REGINA -- UPDATED: 751 unmarked burial sites were discovered near the site of the former Marieval Indian Residential School on Cowessess First Nation.

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Warning: This story contains details some readers may find disturbing.

Cowessess First Nation will make an announcement Thursday morning regarding the “horrific and shocking discovery” of hundreds of burial sites on the grounds of the former Marieval Indian Residential School, according the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN).

The event will be held via Zoom at 9 a.m. local time on Thursday. will stream the announcement live.

The FSIN said “the number of unmarked graves will be the most significantly substantial to date in Canada.”


The Marieval Indian Residential School closed in 1997 after operating for nearly 100 years.

According to information available through the University of Regina, the school was run by the Catholic Church until Cowessess First Nation took over operations in 1981.

The federal government had purchased the property in 1926. The school was “controversially demolished” in 1999, two years after it closed, and replaced with a day school.


If you are a former residential school student in distress, or have been affected by the residential school system and need help, you can contact the 24-hour Indian Residential Schools Crisis Line: 1-866-925-4419

Additional mental-health support and resources for Indigenous people are available here.