Monday, 20 May 2013

The incredible moment George VI met Canadian Indians who presented him with their favourite picture of 'Big White Mother' Queen Victoria

In celebration or remembrance of Queen Victoria Day in Canada. I invite you to see this article from the Mail about King George VI who met some First Nations in Canada on his first trip as King to Canada in 1939. The photo is dated May 26. He was shown a picture of Queen Victoria (his Kokoum-grandmother). The two chiefs greeting the King are also wearing treaty medals as well as one is wearing a treaty uniform given to chief who had signed treaty.

There are many things to reflect on this day concerning the history of this day and it importance to the relations between the Aboriginal peoples of Canada and settlers societies.

The Mail from England calls the Indigenous peoples Indians and not First Nations, it is their term not mine. So Happy Victoria Day.


  1. Often a day I give very little thought to, other than a day off, Victoria Day is a federal Canadian public holiday celebrated on the last Monday before May 25, in honor of Queen Victoria’s birthday. The date is also, simultaneously, that on which the current reigning Canadian sovereign’s official birthday is recognized. The holiday has been observed since before Canada was formed, originally failing on the sovereign’s actual birthday, and continues to be celebrated in various fashions across the country (Alan, 2012). This blog posting and the link applied to it made me reflect on this day and the importance it holds.
    An astonishing photograph the subject of discussion, the photograph shows King George VI and Queen Elizabeth meeting native Indians who are showing the couple their own portrait of Queen Victoria. To answer the obvious first question, why did the Indians have a photograph of Queen Victoria, well he was told, it was a sign of affection because they had previously signed a treaty with her. Some interesting thoughts that stem from this article and photograph are, first, the term Indian is now viewed as socially inacceptable in various circles as many Indians now prefer the term First-Nations, or Aboriginal. Second, the Aboriginals in the picture look so majestic; it reminds me of how the Euro-Americans have ruined their lifestyle.
    I think the most powerful part of this blog posting is captured on the faces within the photograph. Every single expression is an excited/pleased expression. There are while people and brown people together and in this moment there seems to be absolute amity. Queen Elizabeth holding the hand of a little Aboriginal girl many others look on with smiles and happiness in their eyes. What a powerful image. Summarizing it wonderfully Elizabeth said, “I shall always look back upon that visit with feelings of affection and happiness. I think I lost my heart to Canada and Canadians, and my feelings have not changed with the passage of time” (Elizabeth 1985).