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No. 86

MHS Summer
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Historic Sites
of Manitoba

Memorable Manitobans: Keeseekoowenin, a.k.a. Moses Burns (1818-1906)

Native leader.

Born in the Bow River region of what is now Alberta, he moved with his family and band to the Riding Mountain region of present-day Manitoba in 1822. In 1871 the band signed Treaty Two with the federal government, and, as a result, they moved their reserve to a place near Elphinstone in 1875. Keeseekoowenin was regarded by the government as chief. The band had accepted the mission of Presbyterian George Flett, and the chief was baptized as Moses Burns, although a remote branch of the band at Clear Lake remained Catholic. Keeseekoowenin successfully blended Christian values with Native beliefs and traditional rituals. He died near Elphinstone.

More information:

Keeseekoowenin, Dictionary of Canadian Biography XIII, 537-38.


Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by J. M. Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

Page revised: 21 March 2008

Memorable Manitobans

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