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Matachewan Elders Daskwadasing Drum Group

Elders Marie Boucher, Vina Hendrix and Gertie Nolan

Welcome to the Matachewan First Nation website.

Matachewan First Nation is an historic northern First Nation community that has served as the traditional home for many First Nation families.  It is still home to a growing community and the First Nation is actively taking part in partnering and working with the resource development industry in establishing mutually beneficial agreements.  The First Nation also prides itself in being able to work with industry with a focus on protecting the environment and ecology on their traditional lands in northeastern Ontario.

The community is located approximately 30 kilometers southeast of the town of Matachewan and about 60 kilometers west of Kirkland Lake off of Highway 66.

History Of The Community

Michel Batise And Wife 1906

Chief Michel Batise and his wife in Matachewan in 1906

The late Elder Laura Flood explained that her grandfather Michel Batise was the first recognized Chief of Matachewan FN. She noted that originally Chief Batise used the last name Batise-Twain and that at one point, Batise became the family name.

According to the initial Treaty #9 document which was created in 1905 and 1906, the Treaty Commissioners arrived in Matachewan FN on June 19, 1906 after travelling from signing the treaty with the Abitibi First Nation people. They proceeded from Haileybury to Latchford using the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway then north for four days by water craft on the Montreal River to Matachewan FN. A crew from Temagami and several Native people from Matachewan Post including Michel Batise assisted the Treaty Commissioners on their river travel.

On June 20, 1906 a conference was held with the First Nation people of Matachewan and the treaty was signed by several community members and witnessed by the people and others. Michel Batise, Round Eyes, Thomas Fox and Jimmy Pierce signed the treaty with a simple ‘x’ beside their names. It was also signed by Treaty Commissioners Duncan Campbell Scott, Samuel Stewart and Daniel George MacMartin and witnessed by Pelham Edgar, George Monteith and Alex George Meindi, M.D. After the signing, payments were made the next day on June 21 to 79 First Nation members of the community. An election was also held in which Michel Batise was recognized as the first Chief under the new treaty. A feast was later held for everyone and Chief Batise was presented with a flag and a copy of the treaty.

Historic Matachewan FN Photo of a boy and his pets

An historic family photo from Matachewan First Nation showing a young boy and his pets.