In June, Canadians celebrate National Aboriginal History Month, an opportunity to honour the heritage, contributions and cultures of Aboriginal peoples in Canada.
June has long been a month of celebration and remembrance in Canada, with National Aboriginal Day on the 21st, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day on the 24th, and Multiculturalism Day on the 27th.
In 2009, June was declared National Aboriginal History Month, following the passing of a unanimous motion in the House of Commons.
National Aboriginal History Month provides an opportunity to recognize not only the historic contributions of Aboriginal peoples to the development of Canada, but also the strength of present-day Aboriginal communities and their promise for the future.
Celebrating National Aboriginal History Month in June is an important tribute to the heritage and diversity of First Nation, Inuit and Métis communities across Canada.
The relationship between the Crown and Aboriginal people in Canada has been in near constant evolution since it was first established over 300 years ago. It has been affected by commercial and economic pressures, by shifting alliances and external threats, and by policies of protection and subordination. Read more about the history of Aboriginal people, the history of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, and the treaty relationship.
2013 marks the 250th anniversary of the Royal Proclamation of 1763. The Royal Proclamation is a foundational document in the relationship between First Nations people and the Crown and laid the basis for Canada's territorial evolution.
This commemoration is a unique opportunity to learn more about an important event in Canadian history. Learn more about the Royal Proclamation.
2013 also marks the 100th Anniversary of Canadian Arctic Expedition (CAE), a significant turning point in Canada's Arctic territorial history that helped shape Canada into a nation, strong and free. By asserting Canadian control over thousands of square kilometers and confirming Canada's modern Northern border, the Expedition and its activities laid the foundation for the future of Canada's development in the Arctic. The Expedition also showed that despite its youth, Canada was prepared to vigorously demonstrate its sovereignty over a contested territory. Read more on the first Canadian Arctic Expedition commemoration pages.
In 2012, Canada commemorated the 200th Anniversary of the War of 1812. During this war, First Nations and Métis groups fought alongside the British for the land that was to become Canada. From 2012-2014, celebrate National Aboriginal History Month by learning more about the contributions that Aboriginal peoples made to the War of 1812.
All Canadians are encouraged to make the most of Aboriginal History Month every June. Please visit the links below for more information about Aboriginal history.