The day Dow came to Hope Ness

Hopeness3Any discussion here of the history of Hope Ness will include respect paid to the fact First Nation people lived here for many thousands of years before European settlers, mainly from the British Isles, started arriving less than 150 years ago

As far as I know, I don’t have any First Nation blood running through my veins. Both my parents were adopted, my mother by her grandparents, my father by unrelated people when he was a newborn baby. He had no interest in delving into the mystery of his biological origins. “let sleeping dogs lie,” he said.

(A young anthropologist I met on a trip out west in the mid-1970s told me, from what he had learned, a lot of Canadians would be much surprised at the extent of the First Nation presence in their family background. I believed him, and I still do.)

At any event, I don’t feel comfortable writing much at all about the traditional First Nation presence in this area others named Hope Ness. It’s presumptuous, and there’s been far too much of that already. Besides, what do I know, anyway?

I will say only this: I understand from what I’ve read of the information gathered by the nearby Chippewas of Nawash First Nation that this area was traditionally regarded as a powerful spiritual place, a place of healing for Aboriginal people who came here from all over the Great Lakes region. And I think that’s wonderful.

I also think that adds more weight to my thought that Hope Ness should never have been considered by anyone as a site for a major industrial development. Continue reading