Skip to main Content Site Map 705.759.0909

First Nation Culture

Who They are


  • Batchewana FN.
  • Garden River FN.
  • Sagamok FN.
  • Serpent River FN
  • Thessalon FN
  • Mississauga FN,
  • Whitefish FN and the other

Two groups that are present in our area : Missanabie Cree, Métis Nations of Ontario.

Language : Ojibway/ Algonquin/ Cree/ Michif

  • Ojibwa, Ottawa and Algonkian are considered a single language with several dialects.
  • The Ojibwe language, with 6,000 verb forms, is highly complex
  • In the 1992 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records, the Ojibwe language was included under“languages most complex” for having the most verb forms.
  • The Ojibwa language is known as Anishinaabemowin or Ojibwemowin.


  • There are currently over 630 recognized First Nations governments or bands spread across Canada.
  • Approximately 120 bands of Native Peoples have occupied the Great Lakes basin over the course of history.
  • Between 2001 and 2006, the Aboriginal population in Sault Ste. Marie grew by 29%. The First Nations population grew by 16%, while the Métis grew by 53%.
  • According to Statistics Canada (2006), in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario the First Nations is the largest Aboriginal group.


  • The people believed in only one Supreme Being, The Creator, whose mighty power governs and directs the beginning and end of all things.
  • Spiritual beliefs and rituals were very important to the Ojibwa because spirits guided them through life.
  • The Ojibwa have a number of spiritual beliefs passed down by oral tradition under the Midewiwin( traditional healers) teachings.
  • Ojibwa considered themselves one element of nature, no greater or less significant than any other living being.

How did they contribute to life in Sault Ste. Marie

  • The contributions of the First Nation peoples were essential to European exploration and the fur trade in the history.
  • First Nations people taught the newcomers how to live comfortably by wearing properly-made skin and fur clothing.
  • The Ojibwa have made a number of significant contributions , they discovered maple sugar and wild rice and invented hammocks, snowshoes, canoeing, and lacrosse.
  • The “know-how” of the First Nations people saved the lives of countless Europeans in those early days of exploration and trade

 Notable First Nation decent in Sault Ste. Marie

  • Adam Beach, actor known for his work in Flags of Our Fathers and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
  • Larry Phillip (Phil) Fontaine, Former National Chief, Assembly of First Nations
  • Robert Houle, artist, critic, and curator.
  • Al Hunter, Anishinaabe writer and poet. Al Hunter is Anishinaabe from Manitou Rapids, Rainy River First Nations.  Al has published his poetry in many journals and anthologies, including, Rampike; Canadian Literature; Boyhood, Growing Up Male: A Multicultural Anthology; Poets Who Haven’t Moved to Minneapolis; North Coast Review; New Breed; and Gatherings.
  • Wilma Pelly, actor
  • Tommy Prince One of Canada’s most decorated First Nations soldiers.
  • Ted Nolan, Nolan led the Greyhounds to the three consecutive Memorial Cup tournament berths, winning the Canadian national junior championship in 1993.NHL coach for the Buffalo Sabres (1995-1997) and New York Islanders (2006-2008), Winner of the the Jack Adams Award (coach of the year) (1996-1997), Head Coach of Latvia men’s national ice hockey team 2011.
  • Mrs Jackie Fletcher Sault Ste. Marie Community leader.
  • Chief Dean Sayers Chief,  Batchewana First Nation.
  • Chief Kim Rainville Chief, Missanabie Cree
  • Chief Lyle Sayers Chief,  Garden River

Video interviews  gallery  click here Missanabie Cree, Missanabie Cree 2, Missanabie Cree 3Batchewana FN

Missanabie Cree Logo
Metis Flag
Northshore Tribal Council
Adam Beach
Robert Houle
Al Hunter
Wilma Pelly
Tommy Prince
Ted Nolan
Jackie Fletcher
Chief Dean Sayers
Jackie Fletcher