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Native North American Nations in Ontario

Updated on February 27, 2015
Canadian Expeditionary Force: First Nations Elders & Soldiers.
Canadian Expeditionary Force: First Nations Elders & Soldiers. | Source

Ontario Province First Nations

A significantly large segment of the Native North American population in Canada resides in Ontario province, especially in and around Toronto, Ottawa, and Barrie.

Overall, the indigenous peoples of Ontario includely mainly Cree and Ojibwe or Ojibway, with a grouping of Mohawks (many across the border form New York State on a reseerve that crosses country boundaries) and a few other Natigve American nations.

Some fo the nations or tribes in Ontario around major cities are the following, continaed in listings from local telephone and association directories

Southwest Ontario: Walpole Island - St. Clair Region

  • Bkejwanong Community

Barrie, Ontario

  • Barrie Area Native Advisory Circle
  • Barrie Native Friendship Center
  • Huronia Area Aboriginal Management Board
  • Rama and Area Native Women's Assoc.
  • Wiingashk Kwek Women's Group
  • York Region Native Women's Association

Greater Toronto Area

Georgian Bay Native Friendship Centre & Georgian Bay Native Women's Association (Ojibwe)

  • 175 Younge Street; Midland, ON L4R 2A7 -- (705) 526-5589

Union of Ontario Indians

  • 2nd Floor - 27 Queen Street East; Toronto, ON M5C 1R2 -- (416) 366-3527

Native Canadian Centre of Toronto

  • 16 Spadina Rd.; Toronto ON M5R 2S7 -- (416) 964-9087

show route and directions
A markerToronto -
Toronto, ON, Canada
get directions

B markerOttawa -
Ottawa, ON, Canada
get directions

C markerBarrie -
Barrie, ON, Canada
get directions

Six Nations Reserve

A markerSix Nations -
Six Nations, Ohsweken, ON N0A, Canada
get directions

2001 Documentation of Indigenous Peoples in Canada (Green)

The darkest green dots represent the largest numbers of people.
The darkest green dots represent the largest numbers of people.

The Metis People and Ontario

Native North Americans/First Nations cooperated as allies and business partners with Europeans in the founding the nation of Canada, but certain promises were not kept to these Aboriginal peoples.

As allies, they were central to historical events in formation of Canada in that Quebec was recognized as a British French-Indian province. During Quebecker wars with the US, Indians held the balance of power in Canada and were powerful in protecting Canadian borders from encroachments from the USA.

The Metis people created their own Provisional Government under Louis Riel in 1869 and then helped to form Manitoba. The Metis were persistent and vocal in joining Manitoban lands to Canada rather than to the USA.

The Metis people developed in the Canadian Northwest and migrated to the Great Lakes by the end of the 19th century (as far south as Ohio), especially Ontario. They are descendants of French fur traders from the North West Company or Scottish/English fur traders from the Hudson's Bay Company. These traders mated with Cree, Ojibway, and Saulteaux women and their children created a new Native American people, the Metis.

This all occurred in the 1600's through the 1800's, developing a new people fluent in both European and Indian languages and cultures. The Métis were go-betweens in the commercial relationship between Native and other communities. The Métis adapted European technologies to the frontier, developing new boats to transport the fur trade. This tribe increased in number by marrying other Metis and developed a unique Native American Culture, neither European nor Indian, but a hybrid. They have suffered disputes over their land claims to this day, but are active in business and society:

Ontario Metis Aboriginal Association

  • Sault Ste. Marie ON at 1-(800)-423-3361

Federal, Provincial, and Govt-Unrecognized First Nations

The following lists contain many other Ontario-located Native Americans. Although many are listed as members of the larger Cree, Ojibwe and other nations, these groups consider themselves separate entities.

Ontario Nations As Of the mid-2010s

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Harvest Time for cranberries is important among the Mohawks and other area nations.
Harvest Time for cranberries is important among the Mohawks and other area nations. | Source

Pow Wow Etiquette

At Pow Wows all over the Western Hemisphere, all guests, participants and visitors are expected to show proper Pow Wow etiquette and follow all of the rules and protocol that the Pow Wow circuit follows.

  • All Pow Wow Festivals are Alcohol and Drug Free.
  • Powwows have strict rules against alcohol and drug use in the entire area of the powwow, and most prohibit smoking near the arena.
  • Pictures during the Flag, Prayer, Honor Songs and when an individual is honoring a drum through a whistle should not be taken.
  • Guests are asked to stand and remove your hat for certain songs. You do not have to remove your hat if you have an eagle feather in it.
  • Tradition is to respect visiting chiefs and elders by giving them priority for all matters of etiquette.
  • Do not crowd around the drummers.
  • Always ask for permission before making any recordings.
  • Children are welcome to enjoy this event, but cannot play in the Sacred Circle.
  • Participants are asked to respect the arena director, head male dancer and head female dancer.
  • Respect the work of the security committee, because their time is valuable.
  • Heed what the Master of Ceremonies states during the Pow Wow.




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    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 5 years ago from North America

      Hi twana - Congratulations on your discovery and having the written proof. Email the reservation in Ontario and ask them what steps you should take. Visit the major reserve at or the Union of Ontario Indians at and use their email addresses.

    • profile image

      twana 5 years ago

      i just found out my family origins were from the natives in ontario. how do i claim status and is it possible? have proof dated 1700's

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 8 years ago from North America

      Hi Joyce - Among USA federally recognized nations, to my knoweldge from speaking with Ohio nations, status is not lost through marriage to a non-native in US, so denial of status seems unfair -- Canadian federal or provincial or even "tribal" law must be different. One thought that occurs to me is the possibility of denying status until the father's name is revealed, in order for social services and courts to persue child support from him - but this is based on experiences in the US as well. Does yout First Nation have a tribal lawyer you can ask?

      Best to you and your family.

    • profile image

      Joyce McIntee 8 years ago

      I am a First Nation . I married a 'non-native', lost my status, and regain it again in 1985. At this time my two daughters were also given status.

      My daughters would each have one child. One daughter (a single mother)

      has a daughter. Since my daughter was 'single' at the time of my grand daughters birth, I feel this granddaughter should have 'native status'.

      With a father 'unkown', should this child not have status of some sort?

      My two grand children have no recognition as 'native children' although the

      community refers to them as 'Indian'.

      Do comment on this case.

    • profile image

      bestfriend 8 years ago

      the infos are exactly what i need for my papers... oh thanked you

    • profile image

      Brenda 9 years ago

      Hi I just found out a child in my care is or has metis blood. I was wondering where all I can go to teach him about his background. I was wondering is there any upcomming events we could attend in pour area ?

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from North America

      Graceful Guardian, one of my goals is to visit Ontario and some of the tribal grounds and facilities in the province soon. Thank you for encouraging the word to go out.

    • profile image

      Graceful Guardian 9 years ago

      From your Canadian relatives,I thank you!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from North America

      Odarka, try some of these contacts:

      Barrie Area Native Advisory Circle

      29 Victoria Street

      Barrie, Ontario Canada L4N 2H5 (705) 734-1818


      Barrie Native Friendship Center

      175 Bayfield Street,

      Barrie, Ontario L4M 3B4(705) 721-7689 

      Please let us know what you find and how yoru adventures in visiting First Nations progress. :)

    • profile image

      odarka 9 years ago

      I have just moved into the Barrie area and would love to visit a reservation in this area couls you recommend something in and around the area. The more I read the more interest I have:}

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from North America

      Thanks jimmy. It's interesting doing this as well.

    • jimmythejock profile image

      James Paterson 9 years ago from Scotland

      Thanks again Patty, i have learned so much from these 3 hubs, and have enjoyed every word,take care.....jimmy

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from North America

      Thanks Guru-C and Kenny. I'd forgotten for the moment that it's Thanksgiving time.

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile image

      Ashok Rajagopalan 9 years ago from Chennai

      Thanks, Patty, appreciate that effort!

    • Guru-C profile image

      Cory Zacharia 9 years ago

      This is very interesting and truly timely.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from North America

      Kenny - Thanks! I added links now from one page to the other so it's easier - I'll continue to do this. Glad you like them!

      Zsuzsy - I am very glad to know that you went to College there and worked in 'Saint Marie. I think I want to live in Canada for awhile.

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 9 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      Patty what a great collection of info. I was pleasantly surprised that you mentioned my old home town Midland and Barrie where I went to College.

      My second summer job was at 'Saint Marie Amongst the Hurons' as a tour guide showing visitors the old ways with bone-needle and sinew.

      Great HUB

      regards Zsuzsy

    • Kenny Wordsmith profile image

      Ashok Rajagopalan 9 years ago from Chennai

      What a lot of info! Let me go to part 1 that I missed!

      Thanks, Patty!