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An Act for the gradual enfranchisement of Indians, the better management of Indian affairs, and to extend the provisions of the Act 31st Victoria, Chapter 42.
[Assented to 22nd June, 1869.]
|Preamble.||HER Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the
Senate and House of Commons of Canada enacts as follows:
|What shall be deemed lawful possession of lands by
||1. In Townships or other tracts of land set
apart or reserved for Indians in Canada, and subdivided by survey into
lots, no Indian or person claiming to be of Indian blood, or
intermarried with an Indian family, shall be deemed to be lawfully in
possession of any land in such Townships or tracts, unless he or she has
been or shall be located for the same by the order of the Superintendent
General of Indian affairs; and any such person or persons, assuming
possession of any lands of that description, shall be dealt with as
illegally in possession, and be liable to be summarily ejected
therefrom, unless that within six months from the passing of this Act, a
location title be granted to such person or persons by the said
Superintendent General of Indian affairs or such officer or person as he
may thereunto depute and authorize; but the conferring of any such
location title shall not have the effect of rendering the land covered
thereby transferable or subject to seizure under legal process.
|Proceedings to eject parties not lawfully in possession.||2. Any person liable to be summarily ejected,
under the next preceding section, may be removed from the land of which
he may have assumed possession, in the manner provided by the eighteenth
section of the Act passed in the thirty-first year of Her Majesty's
reign, chapter forty-two, with respect to persons other than Indians or
those intermarried with Indians settling on the lands therein referred
to without license of the Secretary of State; and the said section and
the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first sections of the said Act, are
hereby extended to and shall apply to persons liable to be summarily
ejected under this Act, as fully in all respects as to persons liable to
be removed from lands under the said Act.
|Penalty on persons selling intoxicating liquors to
Imprisonment in default of payment.
|3. Any person who shall sell, barter, exchange
or give to any Indian man, woman, or child, any kind of spirituous or
other intoxicating liquors, or cause or procure the same to be done, or
open and keep or cause to be opened and kept, on any land set apart or
reserved for Indians a tavern, house or building where spirituous or
intoxicating liquors are sold or disposed of, shall, upon conviction in
the manner provided by section twelve of the said Act thirty-first
Victoria, chapter forty-two, be subject to the fine therein mentioned;
and in default of payment such fine, or of any fine imposed by the above
mentioned twelfth section of the said Act, any person so offending may
be committed to prison by the Justice of the Peace before whom the
conviction shall take place, for a period not more than three months, or
until such fine be paid; and the commander of any steamer or other
vessel, or boat, from on board or on board of which, any spirituous or
other intoxicating liquor shall have been, or may be sold or disposed of
to any Indian man, woman, or child, shall be liable to a similar
|Division of annuity money, &c.
||4. In the division among the members of any
tribe, band, or body of Indians, of any annuity money, interest money or
rents, no person of less than one fourth Indian blood, born after the
passing of this Act, shall be deemed entitled to share in any annuity,
interest or rents, after a certificate to that effect is given by the
Chief or Chiefs of the band or tribe in Council, and sanctioned by the
Superintendent General of Indian affairs.
|Indians convicted of crime excluded.
How costs may be paid.
|5. Any Indian or person of Indian blood who
shall be convicted of any crime punishable by imprisonment in any
Penitentiary or other place of confinement, shall, during such
imprisonment, be excluded from participating in the annuities, interest
money, or rents payable to the Indian tribe, band, or body, of which he
or she is a member; and whenever any Indian shall be convicted of any
crime punishable by imprisonment in a Penitentiary, or other place of
confinement, the legal costs incurred in procuring such conviction, and
in carrying out the various sentences recorded, may be defrayed by the
Superintendent General of Indian Affairs, and paid out of any annuity or
interests coming to such Indian, or to the band or tribe, as the case
|Proviso added to 31 V., c.4, s.15.
Indian women marrying other than Indians, not to be Indians within this Act.
|6. The fifteenth section of the thirty-first
Victoria, Chapter forty-two, is amended by adding to it the following
"Provided always that any Indian woman marrying any other than an Indian, shall cease to be an Indian within the meaning of this Act, nor shall the children issue of such marriage be considered as Indians within the meaning of this Act; Provided also, that any Indian woman marrying an Indian of any other tribe, band or body shall cease to be a member of the tribe, band or body to which she formerly belonged, and become a member of the tribe, band or body of which her husband is a member, and the children, issue of this marriage, shall belong to their father's tribe only."
|Power of Superintendent General in cases of desertion||7. The Superintendent General of Indian affairs
shall have power to stop the payment of the annuity and interest money
of any person of Indian blood who may be proved to the satisfaction of
the Superintendent General of Indian affairs to have been guilty of
deserting his wife or child, and the said Superintendent may apply the
same towards the support of any woman or child so deserted.
|Aid to sick or destitute persons.
||8. The Superintendent General of Indian Affairs
in cases where sick or disabled, or aged and destitute persons are not
provided for by the tribe, band or body of Indians of which they are
members, may furnish sufficient aid from the funds of each tribe, band
or body, for the relief of such sick, disabled, aged or destitute
|Property of Indians to descend to their children, for their lives only.||9. Upon the death of any Indian holding under
location title any lot or parcel of land, the right and interest therein
of such deceased Indian shall, together with his goods and chattels,
devolve upon his children, on condition of their providing for the
maintenance of their mother, if living; and such children shall have a
life estate only in such land which shall not be transferable or subject
to seizure under legal process, but should such Indian die without
issue, such lot or parcel of land and goods and chattels shall be vested
in the Crown for the benefit of the tribe, band or body of Indians,
after providing for the support of the widow (if any) of such deceased
|Election of chiefs.
Proviso as to life chiefs.
|10. The Governor may order that the Chiefs of
any tribe, band or body of Indians shall be elected by the male members
of each Indian Settlement of the full age of twenty-one years at such
time and place, and in such manner, as the Superintendent General of
Indian Affairs may direct, and they shall in such case be elected for a
period of three years, unless deposed by the Governor for dishonesty,
intemperance, or immorality, and they shall be in the proportion of one
Chief and two Second Chiefs for every two hundred people; but any such
band composed of thirty people may have one Chief ; Provided always that
all life Chiefs now living shall continue as such until death or
resignation, or until their removal by the Governor for dishonesty,
intemperance or immorality.
|Duties of chiefs with respect to roads, &c.||11. The Chief or Chiefs of any tribe, band or
body of Indians shall be bound to cause the roads, bridges, ditches and
fences within their Reserve to be put and maintained in proper order, in
accordance with the instructions received from time to time from the
Superintendent General of Indian Affairs; and whenever in the opinion of
the Superintendent General of Indian Affairs the same are not so put or
maintained in order, he may cause the work to be performed at the cost
of the said tribe, band or body of Indians, or of the particular Indian
in default, as the case may be either out of their annual allowances, or
|Chiefs to frame rules for certain purposes.||12. The Chief or Chiefs of any Tribe in Council
may frame, subject to confirmation by the Governor in Council, rules and
regulations for the following subjects, viz :
|Life estates in lands may be granted in certain cases.||13. The Governor General in Council may on the
report of the Superintendent General of Indian Affairs order the issue
of Letters Patent granting to any Indian who from the degree of
civilization to which he has attained, and the character for integrity
and sobriety which he bears, appears to be a safe and suitable person
for becoming a proprietor of land, a life estate in the land which has
been or may be allotted to him within the Reserve belonging to the tribe
band or body of which he is a member; and in such case such Indian shall
have power to dispose of the same by will, to any of his children, and
if he dies intestate as to any such lands, the same shall descend to his
children according to the laws of that portion of the Dominion of Canada
in which such lands are situate, and the said children to whom such land
is so devised or descends shall have the fee simple thereof.
|Descent of lands in case of death of an enfranchised Indian.||14. If any enfranchised Indian owning land by
virtue of the thirteenth and sixteenth sections of this Act, dies
without leaving any children, such land shall escheat to the Crown for
the benefit of the tribe, band, or body of Indians to which he, or his
father, or mother (as the case may be) belonged; but if he leaves a
widow, she shall, instead of Dower to which she shall not be entitled,
have the said land for life or until her re-marriage, and upon her death
or re-marriage it shall escheat to the Crown for the benefit of the
tribe, band or body of Indians to which he, or his father, or mother (as
the case may be) belonged.
|Provision for widows and unmarried daughters.
||15. The wife or unmarried daughters of any
deceased Indian who may, in consequence of the operation of the
thirteenth and sixteenth sections of this Act be deprived of all benefit
from their husband's or father's land, shall in the periodical division
of the annuity and interest money or other revenues of their husband's
or father's tribe or band, and so long as she or they continue to reside
upon the reserve belonging to the tribe or band, and remain in widowhood
or unmarried, be entitled to and receive two shares instead of one share
of such annuity and interest money.
|Duties of Indians with respect to enfranchisement.
Effect of en- franchisement.
|16. Every such Indian shall, before the issue of
the letters patent mentioned in the thirteenth section of this Act,
declare to the Superintendent General of Indian Affairs, the name and
surname by which he wishes to be enfranchised and thereafter known, and
on his receiving such letters patent, in such name and surname, he shall
be held to be also enfranchised, and he shall thereafter be known by
such name and surname, and his wife and minor unmarried children, shall
be held to be enfranchised; and from the date of such letters patent,
the provisions of any Act or law making any distinction between the
legal rights and liabilities of Indians and those of Her Majesty's other
subjects shall cease to apply to any Indian, his wife or minor children
as aforesaid, so declared to be enfranchised, who shall no longer be
deemed Indians within the meaning of the laws relating to Indians,
except in so far as their right to participate in the annuities and
interest money and rents, of the tribe, band, or body of Indians to
which they belonged is concerned; except that the twelfth, thirteenth,
and fourteenth sections of the Act thirty-first Victoria, chapter
forty-two, and the eleventh section of this Act, shall apply to such
Indian, his wife and children.
|Allotment of locations.||17. In the allotting of locations, and in the
issue of Letters Patent to Indians for land, the quantity of land
located or to be located or passed into Patent, shall, except in special
cases to be reported upon to the Governor in Council, bear (as nearly
as may be) the same proportion to the total quantity of land in the
Reserve, as the number of persons to whom such lands are located or
patented bears to the total number of heads of families of the tribe,
band or body of Indians and male members thereof not being heads of
families, but being above the age of fourteen years, in such reserve.
|Appointment of tutor to minor children of enfranchised Indians.||18. If any Indian enfranchised under this Act
dies leaving any child under the age of twenty-one years, the
Superintendent General of Indian Affairs shall appoint some person to be
the tutor or guardian as the case may be of such child as to property
and rights until it attains the age of twenty-one years; and the widow
of such Indian, being also the mother of any such child, shall receive
its share of the proceeds of the estate of such Indian during the
minority of the child, and shall be entitled to reside on the land left
by such Indian, so long as in the opinion of the Superintendent General
she lives respectably.
|Indians falsely declaring themselves enfranchised.||19. Any Indian falsely representing himself as
enfranchised under this Act when he is not so, shall be liable, on
conviction before any one Justice of the Peace, to imprisonment for any
period not exceeding three months.
|Lands of enfranchised Indians exempt from seizure.||20. Such lands in any Indian Reserve as may be
conveyed to any enfranchised Indian by Letters Patent, shall not, as
long as the life estate of such Indian continues, be subject to seizure
under legal process, or be mortgaged, hypothecated, sold, exchanged,
transferred, leased, or otherwise disposed of.
|Legal remedies of Indians.
||21. Indians not enfranchised shall have the
right to sue for debt due to them, or for any wrong inflicted upon them,
or to compel the performance of obligations made with them.
|Duty of Under Secretary of State.
||22. The Under Secretary of State shall be
charged, under the Secretary of State of Canada, with the performance of
the Departmental duties of the Secretary of State under the said Act,
and with the control and management of the officers, clerks, and servants of
the Department, and with such other powers and duties as may be assigned
to him by the Governor in Council.
|Con. Stat. Can., cap. 9 repealed.
||23. Chapter nine of the Consolidated Statutes
of Canada is hereby repealed.
|31 Vic. c. 32.||24. This Act shall be construed as one Act with
the Act thirty-first Victoria, chapter forty-two.
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