An important part of connecting with Ojibwe heritage
Between the age of a few months and a year, a child is traditionally given their traditional “Ojibwe name”.
In finding an Ojibwe name, a respected elder is chosen to do the naming. The elder will sing and sometimes drum or shake a rattle while seeking a suitable name for the child. When successful the elder states the name, picks up the child, and passes him/her around to all adults present. Each person pronounces the new name while holding the child and wishing them good luck and a happy life.
The new name carries no special significance beyond that of being another name that dedicates them as part of the Anishinaabe nation, and they can use their name whenever they want.
In the past the naming ceremony was an opportunity for a feast, usually after a successful fall or spring hunt. Now, it is a way to reconnect to your indigenous roots and to pass on the traditions of our people.
New park commemorates St. Norbert’s Métis history
The legacy of one of Manitoba’s early Métis families has been recognized with a new park in St. Norbert.
On June 16, a newly minted greenspace on the east side of Pembina Highway at Grandmont Boulevard was named Parc Charette Park after the Charette family. The new park commemorates the homestead the Charette family established at that site in the early 1800s that served as a halfway point between the Red River Settlement and the Morris River (formerly Scratching River) and a resting place for travelers making their way to the settlement.
The original half-log home was built by Baptiste Charette, the family’s patriarch and a carpenter with the North West Company, using glass imported from England and metal hardware brought by ox cart from St. Paul, Minn.
The house was considered to be the earliest home built in the Red River Settlement area. The home was condemned following the flood in 1952.
The home was also used as a small store carrying goods from the Hudson Bay Company and at one point was a meeting place for Joseph Charette and a group of Métis who were opposed to Louis Riel’s agenda.
Local historian Philippe Mailhot said the Charette family predated the arrival of the Selkirk Settlers and the naming of the park recognizes St. Norbert’s rich Métis history. "A lot of people don’t realize that there was a significant Métis population in the area before 1812," Mailhot said. "It’s a recognition of the Métis history of the Red River Settlement and St. Norbert in particular and one of the old time Métis families."
Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians
Albert Lee Ferris was born in 1939 on the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation in north-central North Dakota. The oldest of 4 sons born to Samuel Ferris and Dora Charette, he spent his formative years living in a multi-cultural family environment, with strong American Indian and Lebanese cultural influences from his family.
An enrolled member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians, Albert enjoyed hunting and fishing in the woods and lakes of the Reservation. Albert Lee died suddenly of illness in 1986 - cutting short what was a rapidly rising artistic star. His works are highly prized among members of the Little Shell Tribe and among others who experienced his realistic quality and style of his work. One of his many benefactors was former U.S. Senator Quentin Burdick.
American Indian Arts and Crafts Bureau brochure for his showing at Anadarko in 1983