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Tionontati Indians of Canada

Tionontati, Signifying according to Hewitt (in Hodge, 1910), "there the mountain stands". Also called:

Gens du Petun, French name, meaning "tobacco nation," first used by Champlain (1616), on account of their
  agricultural activities.
Quieunontati, a slightly different form of Tionontati, meaning "where the mountain stands," used by some early
Tobacco Indians, Tobacco Nation, popular English name.

Connections. The Tionontati belonged to the Iroquoian linguistic stock, being most closely connected probably with the Huron whose designation was sometimes extended over them.

Location. In the highland south of Nottawasaga Bay, in Grey and Simcoe Counties, Ontario. (See also Wisconsin.)


Ehouae (mission of St. Pierre and St. Paul), Ekarenniondi (St. Matthieu), Etarita (St. Jean), St. Andre, St. Barthelemy, St. Jacques, St. Jacques et St. Philippe, St. Simon et St. Jude, St. Thomas.

History. The Tionontati were first visited by Europeans, the French, in 1616, and in 1640 the Jesuits established a mission among them. When the Huron villages were destroyed by the Iroquois in 1648-49, many Hurons took refuge with this tribe, in consequence of which the Iroquois turned against them, and attacked Etarita in December 1649, during the absence of the warriors, destroying the mission and many of the inhabitants. In consequence the Tionontati abandoned their country and followed the fortunes of the Huron, with whom they subsequently became amalgamated. Hewitt believed that they are represented to a greater extent in the Wyandot of Ohio than were the Huron proper. (See Wyandot under Ohio.)

Population. Mooney (1928) estimates that in 1600 the Tionontati had a population of 8,000. They are no longer separable from the Huron.

Connection in which they have become noted. The Tionontati were noted solely for the extent to which they cultivated tobacco.

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

Canadian Indians

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