Upbeat, traditional fiddle music plays while multi-colored floral patterns are drawn on a black background.
Text displays: “THE ROCKY MOUNTAIN HOUSE MÉTIS”.
Traditional guitar music plays. Visitors approach an old walled fort. A group of people walk along a pebbled riverbank. A male narrator speaks while standing in a wooded area, in view of several large, white tents.
Text displays: “TRAVIS WEBER, INTERPRETATION COORDINATOR, ROCKY MOUNTAIN HOUSE NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE”.
A montage showing costumed interpreters performing various tasks at a working hunting and trapping camp plays as he speaks.
Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site
was the site along the North Saskatchewan River where the
Hudson’s Bay Company and North West Company established
forts from 1799 to 1876.
They were trading with nine different aboriginal groups,
eight First Nations and the Métis.
You had a huge mixing of cultures,
lots of activity was happening.
People were establishing their campsites, staying overnight,
doing trade ceremonies, trading the next day,
constantly there was an influx of people coming in and out to
do business with the Europeans.
A male narrator speaks from grassy riverbank.
Text displays: “PAT MACDONALD, HISTORIAN AND AUTHOR”.
A woman is shown working near an open fire in front of a teepee as he speaks.
These posts were considered Blackfoot territory.
The Cree were more like the middlemen, the negotiators.
And in between that became the rise of the Métis.
They were great business people.
Supplying the posts with pemmican and supplies and food.
A male narrator speaks while standing on a grassy plain, in beside two teepees.
Text displays: “WARREN FAY, MÉTIS INTERPRETER”.
Costumed interpreters perform traditional tasks in a hunting and trapping camp setting.
Parks Canada in our area in Rocky Mountain House has
been doing a really good job at collaborating with the Métis.
We’ve had a phenomenal amount of visitors to come
and learn about trapping, and learn about the furs,
learn about skinning hides.
A male narrator speaks from the hunting camp.
Text displays: “MARCIEN LEBLANC, MÉTIS TRAPPER”.
He is shown demonstrating his fur trade to visitors.
We explain to the people about the fur trade and the voyageurs,
the way that the Métis used to live,
the way that they would tan hides and about the
traps that they used.
A male narrator speaks from between the shelves of a library.
Text displays: “SCOTT STEPHEN, HISTORIAN, PARKS CANADA”.
A woman performing a traditional dance to live musicians is shown as he speaks.
Rocky Mountain House is one of my favourite examples of
Parks Canada working with community organizations.
It’s a case of people, communities, families,
coming together and each finding significance in a site.
A female narrator speaks while standing in front of a tent.
Text displays: “PAM PICHE LASHMORE, MÉTIS DANCE INSTRUCTOR”.
A small cemetery in a large field is shown as she speaks.
When I walk down on the path here at the park here in
Rocky Mountain House and I go past those old forts,
I kind of ponder the past and were any of my relatives here.
I like the trees, I like the river and I
like the essence of the past.
Costumed interpreters fire muskets and cannons in a large field as visitors look on. A montage shows visitors taking part in various activities on the grounds including: a young girl playing on a swing; visiting a heard of bison and a family walking down a wooded path. A male narrator speaks while standing in the hunting camp and a family is shown carrying their sleeping bags into one of the teepees.
We have lots of activities for the visitors throughout the day.
We have a play fort, a bison herd, about three
kilometres of walking trails throughout the site.
One of our projects here at the site was the heritage camping.
We have trapper’s tents in the woods so we have this
woodland trapper’s village and then on the other side
more of a prairie teepee area where people can camp.
A male narrator speaks from a wooded area.
Text displays: “JOSEPH PIMLOTT, VICE PRESIDENT, REGION 3, MÉTIS NATION OF ALBERTA”.
A montage depicts: visitors actively participating in activities such as, starting fires from scratch; crafting dream catchers; wrapping bannock on a stick; and enjoying a campfire meal as a male narrator speaks.
It’s one of the cool things that I like about this particular
project is that you get to have all the old style pots
and pans and you have to start your fires from scratch.
What makes this site special is not only its natural beauty
but the people who were here.
To understand those people you have to understand
their culture so the purpose of the workshops
is to immerse people in the culture;
one’s a dream catcher workshop, we have a
traditional games workshop, bannock-making workshop.
I think this heritage camping is something dynamic.
And over the years, you’re going to see different experiences and
new projects and each time you come here something
will have changed and there’ll be a new experience.
Children do beaded crafts while seated in a teepee and two elders talk amoungst themselves on a bench outside as the narrator speaks.
Parks Canada has been instrumental in making
sure that cultural component is accurate,
and discussing it with our elders.
They’re just an amazing group of people to work with.
A montage shows visitors actively participating in activities at the site.
We’ve created that template for working with the Métis
and First Nation community members in this area.
And I think we’ve established a good relationship with them to
continue to offer a product that reflects the people
who it should be reflecting, the aboriginal people.
A female narrator speaks while seated near a path in a wooded area.
Text displays: “MARLENE LANZ, PRESIDENT, REGION 3, MÉTIS NATION OF ALBERTA”.
A woman in period costume plays a fiddle outside a white tent.
I’d just like to congratulate the National Historical Site
for recognizing the Métis and helping us
keep the Métis culture alive.
I’m really pleased that this place exists.
Two children play in a large, grounded rowboat. Other children participate in demonstrations of traditional hunting and trapping camp related tasks.
Text displays: “DOREEN BERGUM, ELDER, REGION 3, MÉTIS NATION OF ALBERTA”.
More children actively participate in other traditional tasks.
For the young ones.
For the youth to carry it on.
That’s why it’s so important - sharing our culture,
our music, our dance, our food so they can be proud of
their culture and find the connection and the balance
between past and the present.
A young girl hangs a dream catcher from a tree branch and walks away.