Library and Archives Canada

Library and Archives Canada

February 10, 2016 16:49 ET

Hiding in Plain Sight: Discovering the Métis Nation in the Collection of Library and Archives Canada

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 10, 2016) - Library and Archives Canada (LAC), in collaboration with the Métis National Council (MNC), is pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibition about the Métis based on content from its collection.

Hiding in Plain Sight: Discovering the Métis Nation in the Collection of Library and Archives Canada presents reproductions of selected artwork and photographs pertaining to the Métis. It is hoped that the images featured in the exhibition will help foster a better understanding of the history and culture of the Métis Nation, and that many Canadians will be encouraged to research this topic further in LAC's collection.

The exhibition's official public opening will take place on February 11, 2016, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at 395 Wellington Street in Ottawa. Hiding in Plain Sight runs until April 22, 2016

Quick Facts

  • The Métis Nation is the second largest of the three main groups of Aboriginal peoples in Canada.
  • The Métis developed their own language of Michif. A unique mix of French and Plains Cree languages, it is still spoken by many Métis today.
  • LAC holds a great variety of archival materials relating to the Métis Nation, including textual records, photographs, artwork, maps, stamps and sound recordings.


"The collaboration between LAC, the Métis National Council and the Manitoba Metis Federation on this project is a great example of what can be achieved when we work together. This exhibition, showcasing images of the Métis Nation, will help visitors better understand an essential part of Canadian history and society.

Dr. Guy Berthiaume, Librarian and Archivist of Canada

"I have long been fascinated and inspired by the historic photos of the Métis in the collection of Library and Archives Canada. They truly capture the important role we played in the development of western Canada and I am very pleased that the new exhibition will showcase that fact."

Clément Chartier, President of the Métis National Council

"The steps today go hand in hand with our objective to restore the Metis Nation's rightful place in history - from being Canada's Forgotten People to recognition as the Founders of Manitoba and Canada's Negotiating Partners in Confederation, This is consistent with our goals for the Métis National Heritage Centre to be built in the heartland of the Métis Nation. We are pleased to work with Library and Archives Canada to bring back into our collective memory the history and stories of our people before that knowledge vanishes by the passing of our Métis Elders."

David Chartrand, President of the Manitoba Metis Federation

"This exhibit underlines the importance of Métis languages and cultures for Indigenous communities and for all Canadians. I encourage all Canadians to discover the richness of Métis culture which forms an integral part of Canada's identity. We have a clear role to play as a partner in supporting the revitalization, preservation and promotion of Indigenous languages in Canada."

Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage

"I would like to thank Library and Archives Canada for spearheading this wonderful exhibition, and doing so in collaboration with the Manitoba Metis Federation and the Métis National Council. Experiencing Métis art and culture while showcasing talented Métis artists not only enriches our lives but also provides us with the opportunity to experience the world from a new perspective. Métis art and culture is an important part of Canadian history, and I encourage everyone to visit this exhibition for an opportunity to view the newly available content and to learn more about Métis."

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs

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The mandate of Library and Archives Canada is to preserve the documentary heritage of Canada for the benefit of present and future generations, and to be a source of enduring knowledge accessible to all, thereby contributing to the cultural, social and economic advancement of Canada. Library and Archives Canada also facilitates co-operation among communities involved in the acquisition, preservation and diffusion of knowledge, and serves as the continuing memory of the Government of Canada and its institutions.

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