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Algonkin Indians of Canada

Algonkin. Significance uncertain, but Hewitt ( Hodge, 1907) suggests Micmac algoomeaking or algoomaking, "at the place of spearing fish or eels [from the bow of a canoe]." It was applied originally to one band, the Weskarini.

Connections. The Algonkin were the easternmost division of the Chippewa group of the Algonquian linguistic stock.
Location. On Ottawa River but particularly its northern tributaries.


Abitibi, about Lake Abitibi.
Barrière, about Barrière and Kakabong Lakes.
Dumoine, on Dumoine River and Lake, Ontario.
Kichesipirini, on Allumette Island in Ottawa River and hence often called Algonkins of the Island.
Kipawa, on Kipawa River, Maganasibi River, and the north bank of Ottawa River opposite Mattawa.
Lac des Quinze, Lac des Quinze and to the north and east.
Maniwaki or River Desert, from the upper course of the Rivière Lièvre to Black River.
Ononchataronon, between St. Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers and near Montreal.
Sagaiguninini, southwest of Ottawa River in 1640, perhaps not of this group, as nearly all the other bands are on or
                     northeast of the Ottawa River.    
Timiskaming, on and near Lake Timiskaming.    
Weskarini, on the north side of Ottawa River below Allumette Island and on Gatineau River.


Egan, Maniwaki township, Ottawa County, Quebec.
Hartwell, in Ottawa County, Quebec.
Isle aux Tourtes, mission, for Algonkin and Nipissing, probably on Ottawa River but soon removed to Oka.

History. The Algonkin were encountered by the French when that nation first settled Canada and became firmly attached to them. In the war between the French and Iroquois many bands were driven out of their country, some uniting with the Ottawa, while others fled to the north and east and drifted back into their old territories on the cessation of hostilities. They have since continued in the same region though suffering steady modification in culture and manner of life from contact with Europeans.

Population. Mooney (1928) estimated that in 1600 there were 6,000 in the Algonkin and Ottawa bands combined. In 1884, 3,874 were returned from Quebec Province and eastern Ontario. The total population of the bands recognized as Algonkin in 1900, but including a few Iroquois, was 1,536.

Connection in which they have become noted.
The principal claim of these people to notoriety rests on the fact that they, or rather one of their bands, first bore the name Algonkin from which the name of the great Algonquian linguistic stock was derived, as well as a multitude of names of places and terms of various sorts.

The Indian Tribes of North of America, by John Swanton, 1953

Canadian Indians

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