Louis Riel's great grand niece: Jean Teillet

Jean Teillet is a constitutional lawyer. She specializes in Aboriginal rights litigation and negotiations, with a particular emphasis on Métis rights. She is also a founding member of the Métis Nation of Ontario. She spoke to us about Métis culture.

Royal Ontario Museum
Jean Teillet

© 2006, Royal Ontario Museum. All Rights Reserved.


It's an old culture. It's the first new North American culture. Like it is an indigenous culture to North America. So that's what I think is the take home point is that this is a culture it's not about blood quantum.

We have this idea that the Métis people either all died with Riel or that they all died when the fur trade disappeared and nothing could be further than the truth. People didn't go anywhere. They are still here. It's 2006, it's the beginning of the 21st century and the Métis people are still here. We only hanged one man. We didn't hang them all. It wasn't a massive holocaust  where we wiped them out. You know we didn't play, we did play in Canada a little bit of cowboys and Indians but not as much as they did in the United States. But our aboriginal people are here and we're not going anywhere.

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