This chapter in the Folio Society‘s collection of Historical Trials moves to Canada. As settlers moved into the Northwest, they came into contact with Indian tribes and a group of mixed race hunters. Louis Riel, an unbalanced man who claimed to have a divine mission to lead the natives against the government, took the lead against the government.
The insurgents fought a few skirmishes and were defeated once the government brought its force to bear. Riel and some of the Indian leaders were hanged.
The main impact was political – Riel’s claims that the government was unrepresentative and not acting in the interest of the original residents of the Northwest was more or less true. The fact that Riel was not allowed to have a Catholic juror in the trial because a rallying point for the French-Canadians in Quebec.
Not much of this helped the original residents of the Northwest – the settlers continued to arrive and the old ways were not able to survive for long.
- Notable Historical Trials IV – Whistler vs. Ruskin (kilobooks.wordpress.com)
- Notable Trials IV – President Andrew Johnson (kilobooks.wordpress.com)