June 21st is National Indigenous Peoples Day. In light of the recent findings in May 2021 of 215 unmarked burial sites on the former Residential School property in Kamloops, we are sharing some photos in the video above from the Archives at the Musée Héritage Museum.
St. Albert had two Indian Residential Schools: The St. Albert (Youville) Indian Residential School which ran from 1863 to 1948, and the Edmonton Indian Residential School, which operated from 1924 to 1968.
“Residential schools have been a traumatizing institution for the Indigenous Peoples of Canada, not just for those who attended but for their immediate families and generations after them. Written records have not accurately captured the extent to which children died in these schools, there are only estimates. However, there have been oral histories among Indigenous Peoples who have witnessed deaths and burials that happened at these schools, which have not been taken seriously enough. It finally took ground-penetrating radar in order to confirm that these bodies were indeed buried at [the school in Kamloops]. As of this writing, it has been very difficult to obtain written records to verify the names of these children, due to lack of written records and also the avoidance of some record keepers to fully release their records.” Vino Vipulanantharajah, Archivist, Musée Héritage Museum
Please contact Vino the museum’s archivist at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 780-459-1528 for more information on these photos.
Continue to educate yourself on St. Albert’s Indian Residential School history by visiting the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation website at the University of Manitoba:
Look here for a preview of our up-coming exhibitions from the Legacy of Hope Foundation:
If you are a Survivor and need emotional support, a national crisis line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week:
Residential School Survivor Support Line: 1-866-925-4419