Collection 2002.15 - Department of Indian and Northern Affairs (Prince George Office) collection

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Department of Indian and Northern Affairs (Prince George Office) collection

General material designation

  • Textual record
  • Graphic material

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Collection

Reference code

2002.15

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • 1973-1995 (Creation)
    Creator
    Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

Physical description area

Physical description

  • 24 cm of textual records
  • 106 photographs

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1966-)

Administrative history

In 1755, the British Crown established the British Indian Department, and responsibility for Indian Affairs rested on the Superintendents of Indian Affairs from 1755 to 1841. After 1843, the Governors General held control of Indian Affairs, but usually delegated much of their responsibility to a series of Civil Secretaries. In 1860, the responsibility for Indian affairs was transferred from the government of Great Britain to the Province of Canada and the responsibility for Indian Affairs was given to the Crown Lands Department Commissions Responsible for Indian Affairs.

The federal government's legislative responsibilities for Indians and Inuit derive from section 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867 and responsibility was given to the Secretary of State for the Provinces Responsible for Indian Affairs. In 1876, the Indian Act, which remains the major expression of federal jurisdiction in this area, was passed and a series of treaties were concluded between Canada and the various Indian bands across the country. The responsibility for Indian Affairs and Northern Development rested with various government departments between 1873 and 1966. The Minister of the Interior also held the position of Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs after the Indian Affairs Department was established in 1880. In 1939, federal jurisdiction for Indian peoples was interpreted by the courts to apply to the Inuit. A revised Indian Act was passed in 1951.

From 1950 to 1965, the Indian Affairs portfolio was carried by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration. On October 1, 1966, the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development was created as a result of the Government Organization Act, 1966. Effective June 13, 2011, the department was renamed the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada.

The Northern Development part of the department has its origins in the Department of the Interior, a body created by then Prime Minister John A. Macdonald for the purpose of administering the Dominion Lands Act of 1872. When the Department of the Interior dissolved in 1936 (with the Natural Resources Acts transferring control over natural resources to the Prairie provinces), Indian Affairs fell under the purview of the Department of Mines and Resources. However, the need for social and health-care services in the North led to the establishment of the Northern Administration and Lands branch in 1951, which led to the creation of the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources in 1953. This became the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development in 1966 and then the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development in 2011.

Scope and content

Collection consists of documents and a photograph album from the Department of Indian Affairs including publications, working papers, and reports related to First Nations affairs and administration.

Notes area

Arrangement

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

No restrictions.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Personal or academic use of materials is welcomed under the standard fair use and educational use clauses of Canadian Copyright Law. Commercial use is, however, forbidden without the express permission of the copyright holder. For information on obtaining written permission from the copyright holder, please contact the Northern B.C. Archives and Special Collections.

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