Ni’n na L’nu Honoured
Jesse Francis and I, co-authors of Ni’n na L’nu: The Mi’kmaq of Prince Edward Island, are touched by the honors bestowed on our slim book. At the Atlantic Book Awards on May 21 it was selected as the “best Atlantic-published book” and as the winner of the best PEI non-fiction book. Back in February the book (and exhibit of the same name) received an award from the PEI Museum and Heritage Foundation. A French translation of the book is in the works. It is to be available in October 2014.
The exhibit is on display all summer long at the Parks Canada interpretation center at Greenwich, PEI. From October 10, 2014 until February 2015 it will be at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, QC (across the river from Ottawa).
I’d like to say a little about where the content of the book comes from. Back in the 1990s I was fortunate enough to be given a three-year, cross-country, Parks Canada assignment to visit nearly every national historic site and many national parks and offer my thoughts on how Parks might do a better job of interpreting Aboriginal history at those sites and parks. My eyes were opened all along the way. Two particular people who influenced me were the late Noel Doucette (then the Chief of the Chapel Island First Nation) and Peter Christmas. The report I wrote for Parks Canada I called “Toward a New Past”. In the years that followed I became involved in many smaller (but equally important) projects among the Mi’kmaq on Cape Breton Island, on mainland Nova Scotia and on Prince Edward Island. The particular details of Jesse Francis’ story are different, yet essentially the same. There is a long list of specific people Jesse and I thank at the end of the book.