New book aiming to keep Indigenous stories alive
Published Friday, May 17, 2019 6:54PM CST
Last Updated Saturday, May 18, 2019 11:54AM CST
A new book launched at the 20th anniversary celebration of the Touchwood Agency Tribal Council is looking to share stories from elders to future generations.
Andrew Miller, a non-Indigenous Professor with the First Nations University of Canada, is a co-author of ‘The Touchwood Hills People: Our Land,’ and said 30 elders shared their experiences for the book.
“Every first nation has their stories every first nation has their history that we should be respectful of,” said Miller. “I didn't have to seek people to interview. The elders were identified within the communities the 4 communities who were known as experts.”
86 pages of the book show photos and stories of historic Indigenous sites. The Daystar, George Gordon, Kawacatoose and Muskowekwan First nations all contributed to the book. Their stories were transcribed to English from several indigenous languages.
Project coordinator Bill Strongarm said it took two years to complete the book, but he hopes the lessons inside can help younger generations.
“When you start to lose speakers and the languages, you start to lose the story behind the places and that's what prompted this project,” said Strongarm. “It will reestablish them. To establish their identity to who they are, to the land and to themselves."
Alvin Campeau, and local elder shared his stories for the book, and he is hopeful his personal stories have an impact.
“The book means a lot to me because now our children and their children can look back and say look here's how we were a long time ago,” said Campeau.
Elders from more communities have yet to share their experiences and are being encouraged to continue to pass on their knowledge, and help keep Indigenous history alive.
With files from CTV News' Kathryn Fraser