Thursday, January 01, 2009

Ammunition for the parking lot preservationists?

What happens when it gets out that the vacant lot at The Forks, possibly developed as housing (and certainly developed as a Canadian Museum for Human Rights parkade) is sitting on an Aboriginal burial ground?

Randy R. Rotestki wrote in the Autumn 1977 issue of Manitoba Pageant:
"There is substantial evidence that an Indian burial ground existed in the area bounded by Water and Main to the north and St. Mary's and Fort Street to the south and west. This was formerly a portion of the Hudson's Bay Reserve...

"According to one 1876 account, an old resident stated that burials had taken place in the area as late as 1851. Furthermore, the area seems to have been centered in the space now falling between Water and Wesley Streets. Ham acknowledged this location by citing "tradition" in his book. While the western portion of this burying ground has been built and rebuilt upon with substantial structures, the section known as the East Yards has remained virtually untouched, save for the construction of rail lines since the 1890s. While the Indians had abandoned their burial ground with its shallow graves at the time of the beginnings of the village of Winnipeg, the area known as the "Flats" (now the "Yards") was known as a rather out of the way and disreputable part of the city. This reputation probably stemmed from the latent memory of a cemetery being there, and the area developed accordingly.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

for some reason the first thing that comes to mind after reading that is "Poltergeist"

8:35 PM  

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