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Introduction

This website strives to provide a comprehensive understanding of the Mi'gmaq and Maliseet First Nations way of life within the province of New Brunswick required to preserve important values unique to the First Nation people.

First Nation lifestyle in the past was nomadic and covered a broad geographical range. This puts more emphasis on little details from baptism or wedding records (where godparents or witnesses can be found) to research a person's ancestry than on other types of genealogical records. Actual government censuses themselves are deficient but are nevertheless most useful in data verification. Census documents not in the main stream, e.g. parish censuses, are much more useful in establishing any continuity in ancestral lineage. A case in point is the 1851 census, which did not enumerate the Maliseet living within the designated land parcel at Tobique. The early practise of Roman Catholic priests to record a First Nation person only by a designated first name, also complicates matters.

This website aids in planning and conducting First Nation genealogical research, interviewing relatives, composing and writing letters of inquiry, evaluating facts and problem solving, establishing a record keeping system and documenting the information you discover. There are explanations on the nature of genealogical research and discussions on how to identify and use genealogical records found in the home, at archives, libraries, museums and genealogical and historical societies. It is hoped that this website will prove useful to First Nation genealogists, leaders, educators, parents and students and promote an increased awareness of, and an appreciation for the history and culture of the First People and their contributions to New Brunswick society.

First Nation genealogists are reminded that there are a number of very informative books and archival collections dealing with various aspects of Mi'gmaq and Maliseet history, language, culture, land claims, etc. Many of these items, listed within this website, are found in the Harriet Irving Library Archives & Special Collections and the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick (PANB) both located on the University of New Brunswick, Fredericton campus and at the Centre d'études acadiennes Anselme-Chiasson in the Université de Moncton library.