• 1 Mission of the Immaculate Conception

    The Mission of the Immaculate Conception was founded in 1849 on the banks of the Kaministiquia River by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) in order to visit and convert First Nations communities along the north shore of Lake Superior in Canada West (Ontario). Competition for furs had depleted resources of the area, which pushed the fur trade further north and west and seriously affected the hunting practises and income of the Ojibwa. In 1849, two Jesuit priests – Father Jean-Pierre Choné (1808-78) and Father Nicholas Frémiot (1818-54) – established the Mission of the Immaculate Conception on the Kaministiquia River. From there, Jesuit missionaries travelled the north shore of Lake Superior, encouraging First Nations groups to settle rather than continue their traditional nomadic lifestyle. The Jesuits also supported Ojibwa demands for compensation for First Nations lands acquired by the Crown in the region. After the site was purchased in 1908 by the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway, the mission was moved to the nearby Fort William First Nation Reserve. In 1972, the last of the mission buildings on the original site were destroyed by fire.

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