Native Groups of Netley
The Assiniboine were probably the first inhabitants of the Netley area. They came west from Lake of the Woods, moving with the fur trade. They were centred around Lake Winnipeg and Netley Creek.
The Assiniboine suffered from smallpox late in the 18th century. By 1800, they had vacated this area for the prairie where they subsisted on bison.
In 1800 the Ottawa tribe were seen camped along Netley Creek where they had small gardens of corn and potatoes. Alexander Henry the Younger, visited them in 1805 and left them with seed for their gardens.
The Cree became middlemen in the fur trade after the formation of the Hudson Bay Company in 1670. They moved into the region in late 1600. La Verendrye contacted them along the Red River on his explorations in the 1780s.
At Netley and Muckle Creeks there is evidence of two villages wiped out by smallpox. In 1789 John McDonnell estimated one-third had died as a result of the diseases.
The Saulteux were one of the last tribes to come into the Netley Creek area circa 1780. Also known as Ojibway, the Saulteux came from Saute Ste. Marie area. At the time of the Selkirk Treaty signing in 1817, the Saulteaux controlled most of the area between Lake Winnipeg and the Red/Assiniboine junction.
Source: Panels erected by the Province of Manitoba, Department of Natural Resources