The People


Louis Riel insisted throughout the Resistance of 1869 to 1870 that “the people” had the right to be considered as — and to be — the ultimate political authority in Assiniboia. Instituting representative and responsible government was viewed as the means of  achieving governance by the people. [See Definitions: Representative and Responsible Government, this site.]

Elections were held in 26 electoral ridings (called ‘parishes’ colloquially) for 28 representatives in the Legislative Assembly of the Provisional Government. The boundaries of the ridings mostly conformed to those of ecclesiastical/ church parishes, or parts of church parishes, within the settlement. The riding of the Town of Winnipeg, which fell within the parish of St. John’s, was given separate representation as the capital of the North-West. The parish of Baie St. Paul was combined with White Horse Plains, which was not an ecclesiastical parish per se but rather a loosley defined, large, and sparsely settled area north of the riverlots along the Assiniboine. Likewise, the boundaries of St. Margaret’s and St. Mary’s were likely extended to include outlying settlements near Lake Manitoba.

parish map with Town of Wpg 1870

Map (click to embiggen) giving a rough indication of the location of parishes from which representatives to the Legislative Assembly of Assiniboia were elected. See also Parishes of Assiniboia, 1870 for a discussion of the map.


Links to constituent families who elected representatives to the Legislative Assembly of Assiniboia, 1870, listed by electoral riding/ parish:


St. Peter’s Parish/ ‘the Indian Settlement’/ Peguis’ Settlement, represented by Hon. John Sinclair.

St. Clement’s Parish/ Mapleton, represented by Hon. Thomas Bunn.

St. Andrew’s/ Pelican Ripple/ The Rapids/ Grand Rapids part 1 and St. Andrew’s part 2 represented by Hon. Thomas Sinclair Jr. and Hon. Edward Henry George Gunter ‘E.H.G.G.’ Hay

St. Paul’s Parish/ Middlechurch/ Image Plain represented by Hon. Dr. Curtis James Bird

Kildonan Parish/ Frog Plain/ la Grenouillière represented by Hon. William Fraser.

St. John’s Parish represented by Hon. Andrew Graham Ballenden Bannatyne.

Town of Winnipeg represented by Hon. Hugh Francis Olone and Hon. Alfred H. Scott.

St. James Parish’ represented by Hon. James McKay.

St. Charles’ Parish represented by Hon. Baptiste/ Jean-Baptiste Beauchemin.

Headingly/ Headingley/ Parish of Holy Trinity represented by Hon. William Auld Tait.

St. Francois-Xavier/ Grantown/ Coteau des festins part 1 and St. Francois-Xavier Parish part 2 represented by Hon. François Dauphinais  and Hon. François Xavier Pagé.

Parish of Baie St. Paul and White Horse Plain represented by Hon. Pierre Poitras.

St. Ann’s Parish/ Poplar Point  represented by Hon. George Gunn.

St. Margaret’s Parish/ High Bluff represented by Hon. John Lazarus Norquay ‘Sr.’

Parish of St. Mary’s Laprairie/ Prairie Portage/ the Portage/ Portage la Prairie represented by Hon. William Garrioch Jr.

St. Boniface Parish part 1 and St. Boniface Parish part 2 represented by Hon. John Bruce, Hon. William Bernard O’Donoghue, and Hon. Louis Schmidt.

St. Vital Parish/ Rogaton represented by Hon. André Beauchemin and Hon. Ambroise-Dydime Lépine.

St. Norbert/ Rivière Sale represented by Hon. Pierre Parenteau and Hon. Jean-Baptiste Tourond.

Pointe Coupée/ Cut Point (St. Adolphe), and Pointe à Grouette (St. Agathe), both sometimes a.k.a St. Norbert represented by Hon. Pierre Delorme and Hon. Louis Lacerte.

Ste.-Anne/ Point des Chêne/ Sainte-Anne-Pointe-des-Chênes/ Ste.-Anne des Chênes/ Oak Point/ St. Alexandre represented by Hon. Auguste Harrison.


Published: 15 May 2013


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