M20855 | Nicholas Vincent Tsawenhohi

 
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Nicholas Vincent Tsawenhohi
Edward Chatfield
1825, 19th century
33.3 x 29 cm
Gift of Mrs. Walter M. Stewart
M20855
© McCord Museum
Description
Keywords:  Ethnology (606) , Native people (373) , Print (10661)
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Keys to History

Nicolas Vincent Tsawenhohi (1769-1844), born in Wendake (Jeune-Lorette) near Quebec City, was one of the last hereditary Huron-Wendat chiefs. He was a highly respected diplomat who devoted much of his life to a judicial battle aimed at re-establishing the Huron-Wendat Nation's title of ownership of the seigneury of Sillery. In 1825, he travelled to London with three other Huron-Wendat chiefs and made representations to King George IV, an event commemorated in this lithograph. Period accounts describe Grand Chief Vincent as an eloquent orator with a sharp mind, an acute sense of responsibility and great personal dignity.

Grand Chief Nicolas Vincent Tsawenhohi is depicted holding the wampum belt he displayed before King George IV in London in 1825. Wampum belts are also called truth belts by the Huron-Wendat nation. According to Huron-Wendat oral tradition, this belt may have originally been made to mark the conclusion of a peace treaty at the time of the Conquest of Canada by the British in 1760.

  • What

    This lithograph depicts the Huron-Wendat chief Nicolas Vincent Tsawenhohi (1769-1844) in 1825. The image was engraved in London by Charles Joseph Hullmandel after a painting by Edward Chatfield.

  • Where

    Chief Nicolas Vincent Tsawenhohi lived in Wendake (Jeune Lorette) near Québec City. This lithograph commemorates a visit he made to the London court of King George IV.

  • When

    The trip to London took place in 1825. This was a period when the Huron-Wendat were rapidly losing both land and rights, as their non-Aboriginal neighbours continued to encroach on their territories.

  • Who

    Nicolas Vincent Tsawenhohi (1769-1844), born in Wendake (Jeune Lorette) near Quebec City, was one of the last hereditary Huron-Wendat chiefs. He was a highly respected diplomat who devoted much of his life to a judicial battle aimed at re-establishing the Huron-Wendat Nation's ownership title to the seigneury of Sillery.