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COWANS, MARY – Volume XIII (1901-1910)

d. 17 Jan. 1901 in Montreal


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Sir John A. Macdonald

From the Red River Settlement to Manitoba (1812–70)

Sir Wilfrid Laurier

Sir George-Étienne Cartier


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MAKHEABICHTICHIOU (Makhatewebichtichi), sometimes identified as a Montagnais chief; probably b. in the vicinity of Trois-Rivières; d. 1640 or 1641.

Father Paul Le Jeune mentions Makheabichtichiou in 1637. A daughter, Agatha Khisipikiwam, was baptized at the mission of Saint-Joseph (Sillery) according to a register of baptisms for the year 1638–40 and the death of his oldest son is mentioned by Father Le Jeune in the Relation of 1640–1.

Makheabichtichiou is said to have been strong and hardy, a good warrior with a ready tongue. Although he was not the captain or chief of his tribe, he was, nevertheless, usually recognized as the chief of his band. Consequently he often fulfilled the duties of captain or chief and thereby unofficially acquired his title. During the year 1637, having erected a camp near Quebec, Makheabichtichiou sought to gain the goodwill of the governor, Huault de Montmagny by stressing his acquaintance with the Jesuit missionaries. In fact, before leaving Trois-Rivières, Makheabichtichiou asked Father Jacques Buteux for a letter to Father Le Jeune requesting access for him to the residence of the Jesuits at Quebec.

Makheabichtichiou achieved his desire. The governor extended a hearty welcome but made it evident that a close friendship was reserved for those Indians who were instructed in the Christian faith. Makheabichtichiou thereafter manifested a more than ordinary interest in Christian doctine. He frequented the residence of the Jesuits even at night in order, as he declared, to avoid intruding upon the time of the many French who came daily to consult the missionaries. During the year 1637, Makheabichtichiou often conversed with Father Le Jeune about Christianity. He sometimes preached to his fellow Indians but also, on occasion, he exhibited anger towards Father Le Jeune. Father Le Jeune’s Relation for 1637 and 1638 implies that Makheabichtichiou repeatedly protested his belief in Christianity but could not bring himself to give up polygamy. The Christian Indians at Sillery disapproved of Makheabichtichiou, which caused him to remove with his two wives to the land of the Abenakis where, during the winter of 1640–1, he met a violent death, supposedly at the hands of an intoxicated member of that tribe who lived “near the sea.”

Thomas Grassmann

JR (Thwaites), XI, 149–65, 167–83, 225; XIV, 133, 265; XX, 209–11, 309 n.10; XXI, 10, 67, 69.

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Information to be used in other citation formats

Permalink: http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/makheabichtichiou_1E.html
Author of Article:   Thomas Grassmann
Publication Name:   EN:UNDEF:public_citation_publication, vol. 1
Publication Details:   EN:UNDEF:public_citation_publisher, 1966
Year of publication:   1966
Year of revision:   1979
Access Date:   January 17, 2021