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Indigenous Law / Indigenous Legal Traditions

This guide looks at Indigenous legal traditions created by Indigenous legal orders.


Canadian treaties are agreements between the Crown and Indigenous Peoples.  These treaties can be divided into three groups: 

  • Pre-Confederation/Historic - including the Royal Proclamation of 1763, treaties such as the 1850 Robinson treaties, and the Vancouver Island Treaties (Douglas Treaties) (1850-1854),
  • Numbered - consists of treaties numbers 1 to 11 signed between 1871 and 1921, covering all of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, parts of Ontario, British Columbia and the Yukon. 
  • Modern - consists of Land Claims agreements negotiated according to the Federal Government Comprehensive Land Claims Policy established in 1973.  In British Columbia, since 1992, the British Columbia Treaty Commission oversees treaty negotiations, which with a few exceptions, had not previously been negotiated. 

Below is an overall summary of treaties in Canada. See UBC's Aboriginal Treaty Libguide for a more detailed and in-depth look at treaties.

General Information on Treaties

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