Cree Chief Kees kee hew mus-coo muskwa (Little Black Bear) signed Treaty 4 on September 15, 1874, and settled on the reserve surveyed for his band in the File Hills (4 km south and 4 km west of Goodeve) in 1880. During the early 1800s, members of this Cree-Assiniboine band were nomadic, hunting and camping within in the Cypress Hills area. Like most treaty bands in the province, members of Little Black Bear began farming once settled on reserve, progressing at the rate that technology, climatic conditions, and government policy allowed. This band has its own Band Membership Code, and band by-laws that govern all areas of its administration. Band-owned land in Balcarres holds their Lands Holding Company and Trust Office, while land in Ft. Qu’Appelle remains open for future development. Community infrastructure includes a band office, band hall, and swimming pool. Currently there are a total of 452 band members, 158 of whom live on their 17,006-acre reserve.

Christian Thompson