Elders Guide Us

The Elders’ Advisory Council has been guiding the project since 2002. Here in 2008, Judy Bernard Julian and Florence Walsh listen to Doug Knockwood talk about the first Debert site, which was discovered 60 years earlier in 1948.

The Mi’kmawey Debert Elders’ Advisory Council uses the concept of Wejisqaliati’k as one way to describe their understanding of the Debert sites. Wejisqaliati’k translates to “we grew up from the earth,” and speaks directly to the first guiding principles of the project, “As Mi’kmaq, we are descended from the people who have come before us in Mi’kma’ki”.

The Elders’ Advisory Council’s commitment to protecting the archaeological sites reflects the universal concern of the Mi’kmaw Nation to protect ancestral sites across Mi’kma’ki. In Debert, site protection has been a complex and long process involving public meetings, land negotiations, and new legislation to protect sites in the Debert area. The EAC continues to advise the project in these efforts.

The site plan for the Mi’kmawey Debert Cultural Centre shows the building’s central location surrounded by the ancestral sites, walking trails and other interpretive aspects. Image courtesy of Lundholm Associates Architects.

The site plan for the Mi’kmawey Debert Cultural Centre shows the building’s central location surrounded by the ancestral sites, walking trails and other interpretive aspects. Image courtesy of Lundholm Associates Architects.

The Centre will be located close to the archaeological sites, in part for interpretation, but also because we believe this is the best way to protect these special places. In December 2008, the Mi’kmawey Debert Elders’ Advisory Council located the Centre on a high knoll overlooking one of the archaeological sites.

3 Responses to Elders Guide Us

  1. Good Morning:
    The site is fabulous!

  2. Susan Dill says:

    What a fabulous site, vision is here, history is here, pride is here and education is here and probably much more! I am excited about this even though I am unaware of any Mi’kmaq ancestry in my family tree. I feel a kinship.

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