The Ipperwash Crisis – Part 1

In September 1995, a small group of First Nations protestors in Southwestern Ontario, occupied a provincial park and campground on the shore of Lake Huron.  They claimed Indian agents didn’t represent the Chippewa properly when the land was sold to speculators in the 1920’s and they claimed that Ipperwash Provincial Park contained sacred native burial grounds.

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Ipperwash Provincial Park on the shore of Lake Huron

 

Within days the peaceful protest erupted in violence when heavily armed police officers marched to the park to confront the natives.  Over the next 30 minutes chaos erupted. A native man was beaten unconscious, A school bus and a car were driven into a crowd of police offers and Dudley George a native protester was shot to death. He was the first Canadian Indian killed in a land claims dispute in the 20th century.

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Dudley George was shot and killed by an OPP officer during the protest at Ipperwash Provincial Park

This episode looks  back at the years leading up to the occupation and at the night that George was killed.  Thanks to Peter Edwards who shared his knowledge about this complicated case.  His book about the Ipperwash crisis is called One Dead Indian

 

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