Chief Cadmus Delorme of the Cowessess First Nation announced on June 24 that 751 unmarked graves have been found at a cemetery near the former Marieval Indian Residential School. The Residential School operated from 1899 to 1997 in the area where Cowessess First Nation is now located. The colonial state and Catholic Church forced Indigenous children from across Saskatchewan and Manitoba to stay at the school. The RCMP and other police powers threatened Indigenous families with imprisonment if they did not hand over their children.
Chief Cadmus Delorme at a press conference said, “This is not a mass grave site. These are unmarked graves.” He said that some of the remains previously had markers but the priest in charge of the cemetery ordered them removed in the 1960s prior to the Cowessess First Nation taking control of the site. Chief Delorme said oral stories from local Truth-keepers speak of both children and adults being there. [More]