Chief Poundmaker (Pitikwahanapiwiyin) signed an adhesion to Treaty 6 on February 22, 1876, at Fort Carlton, and chose a reserve 40 km northwest of North Battleford in 1881. Once a member of Red Pheasant’s band, Poundmaker broke away to create a band of his own. He was a good leader and orator, and is recognized for negotiating the inclusion of the “famine clause” in Treaty 6. He died at Blackfoot Crossing near Gleichen, Alberta, and the band remained without a chief until 1920. His remains were returned to the reserve in 1967 and laid to rest on Cutknife Hill. It was announced in 1998 that 904.4 ha were being purchased and set apart as reserve land for the band under the Saskatchewan Treaty Land Entitlement Framework Agreement, increasing the reserve’s size to 13,181.1 ha. The band’s economic base is agricultural, but also includes businesses such as the Kanatinak Store and Gas Bar. Their infrastructure includes a band office, medical clinic, band hall, school and teacherage. There currently are 1,299 registered band members, with 569 people living on reserve.

Christian Thompson