Rooted in Treaty (Part One)

During her historic installation address, Mary Simon, Canada’s first Indigenous Governor General, pledged that she would use her new role, “to hold together the tension of the past with the promise of the future, in a wise and thoughtful way.”

The Crown, due to its history in this land, embodies that tension. It is this very tension that makes the Crown not only relevant, but indispensable to the future of Canada. Restored through ceremony by the Sovereign and his representatives and made operational by governments acting in his name, the Honour of the Crown provides a path to reconciliation, but it also holds out the possibility of meaningful relationship through mutually respected symbols, recovered ceremonies and new protocols.

As we begin the reign of Charles III, Canada has an opportunity to restore – decolonize – the role of the Crown in this land, paraphrasing former Assemby of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde, as a caretaker and witness to the immutable relationships that sustain it.

All that it requires is the Government of Canada to allow these relationships to continue to be renewed in wise and thoughtful ways.

Episode One (Part One) of The Crown in Canada Podcast begins an exploration of the Crown’s critical role in the Indigenous-Settler relationships of North America. Focusing on the Silver Covenant Chain, extended into what is now Canada by the Treaty of Niagara (1764), host Nathan Tidridge guides listeners through a history that was nearly forgotten by settlers and asks the question “What roles do the King and his Canadian representatives have in the Crown-Indigenous relationships threaded throughout this land?”



Asch, Michael, ed. Aboriginal and Treaty Rights in Canada: Essays on law, equity, and respect for difference. Vancouver: UBC Press, 1997.

Borrows, John. “Wampum at Niagara: The Royal Proclamation, Canadian Legal History, and Self-Government,” in Aboriginal and Treaty Rights in Canada: Essays on law, equity, and respect for difference, ed. Michael Asch. Vancouver: UBC Press, 1997.

Bagehot, Walter. The English Constitution, and Other Political Essays. New York: D. Appleton & Company, 1877.

Bellegarde, Perry. “Crown-First Nations Treaty Relationships,” in Royal Progress: Canada’s Monarchy in the Age of Disruption, D. Michael Jackson ed. Toronto: Dundurn, 2020.

Hill, Rick W., and Nathan Tidridge. “The Crown, the Chain, and Peacekeeping: Diplomatic Traditions of the Covenant Chain,” in Royal Progress: Canada’s Monarchy in the Age of Disruption, D. Michael Jackson ed. Toronto: Dundurn, 2020.

Jackson, D. Michael, ed. A Resilient Crown: Canada’s Monarchy at the Platinum Jubilee, ed. D. Michael Jackson. Toronto: Dundurn Press, 2022.

Klassen, Pamela. “Spiritual Jurisdictions: Treaty People and the Queen of Canada” in Ekklesia: Three Enquires in Church and State. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2018.

McCreery, Christopher, Jonathan Shanks and David E. Smith. Canada’s Deep Crown: Beyond Elizabeth II, The Crown’s Continuing Canadian Complexion. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2022.

Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: calls to action. Ottawa: The Commission, 2015.

Tidridge, Nathan. “Decolonizing the Crown in Canada: Restoring the Queen at the Council Fire,” in The Canadian Kingdom: 150 Years of Constitutional Monarchy, D. Michael Jackson ed. Toronto: Dundurn, 2018.

———. The Queen at the Council Fire: The Treaty of Niagara, Reconciliation, and the Dignified Crown in Canada. Toronto:

Dundurn, 2015.

——— and John Fraser. “An empowered GG could restore Crown’s role as Treaty partner.” Policy Options, May 15 2020.


Other resources:

Institute for the Study of the Crown in Canada:

Chapels Royal in North America:

Christ Church, His Majesty’s Royal Chapel of the Mohawks (Bay of Quinte): ChristChurchbrochure.pdf (

His Majesty’s Royal Chapel of the Mohawks (Brantford):

Gi-Chi-Twaa Gimaa Nini Mississauga Anishinaabek AName Amik (The King’s Anishinaabek Sacred Place) at Massey College: The Chapel Royal – Massey College


Joseph, Bob. 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act. Indigenous Relations Press, 2018.

Russell, Peter H. Canada’s Odyssey: A Country Based on Incomplete Conquests. University of Toronto Press, 2017.

Music Credits

Titles (Intro & Outro):

The Endless by Kevin MacLeod (

Continuo (in order of appearance):


We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of the Government of Canada, Canadian Heritage Community Projects Program on behalf of the 2022 Platinum Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in creating this podcast.

Nous reconnaissons le généreux soutien du gouvernement du Canada dans la production de ce balado.