Siksika Nation

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Siksika Nation
Total population
Regions with significant populations
Canada Canada
(Alberta Alberta)
English, Blackfoot
Christianity, Traditional beliefs
Related ethnic groups
other Blackfoot peoples (Kainai, South Peigan, and Northern Peigan) and Algonquian peoples

The Siksika Nation is a First Nation in southernmost Alberta, Canada. The name Siksiká comes from the Blackfoot words sik (black) and iká (foot), with a connector s between the two words. The plural form of Siksiká is Siksikáwa. The Siksikáwa are the northernmost of the Niitsítapi (Original People), all of whom speak dialects of Blackfoot, an Algonquian language.

When European explorers travelled west, they most likely met the Siksiká first and assumed all Niitsítapi of the Blackfoot Confederacy were Blackfoot, which is incorrect. The four Niitsítapi nations of the Blackfoot Confederacy are the Siksiká, Káínaa (Kainai or Blood), Aapátohsipikáni (Northern Peigan), and Aamsskáápipikani (South Peigan or Montana Blackfoot). The approximate population of the Siksika Nation, as of 2009, is 6,000 people.[1]


The Siksika Nation reserve, Siksika 146 is located one hour's drive east of the city of Calgary, and three kilometres south of the Trans Canada Highway #1. The administrative and business district are strategically located adjacent to the Town of Gleichen to accommodate visitor traffic.

Land claims[edit]

Two members of the Siksika Nation from southern Alberta and a local non-Aboriginal supporter in Ottawa on January 11th 2013 for the Idle No More protest movement

The Siksika Nation has had a longstanding land claim dispute with the Government of Canada over events dating back to 1910. The government sought the cession of approximately 46,621.4 hectares (115,204 acres) of land within the Siksika Indian Reserve for sale by the federal government to incoming settlers. The cession included 5,067.6 hectares (12,522 acres) of reserve lands to be transferred to the Canadian Pacific Railway, for construction of the Bassano Dam. The band members were not adequately informed about this portion and lost the use of the surface rights of the land. The Nation claims the transfer was done illegally. In 1980, the government admitted that no proof existed that Canadian Pacific had acquired the rights to the land for the dam.[2]

The Nation entered into negotiations with the Canadian government to settle the land claim. In 1991, the Siksika nation signed a $4.9m agreement with the government for compensation for mineral rights lost due to construction of the dam. In 2010, the Nation finally reached agreement with the governments of Canada and Alberta to settle the land claims. The band would receive $50 million and new water rights.[2] The money will be put in a trust to benefit the Nation for purposes such as education and welfare.

Notable people[edit]



  1. ^ a b "Oki (Welcome)". Official Website of the Siksika Nation. 2009 (retrieved 12 December 2009)
  2. ^ a b Kelly Clyderman (2010-12-12). "Deal would give native band over $50 million in land dispute". Montreal Gazette. Retrieved 2010-12-24. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 50°48′11″N 112°54′22″W / 50.8030°N 112.9060°W / 50.8030; -112.9060