Where Spirits Live
In ancient times our ancestors established a village where the Little Southwest and the Northwest Miramichi Rivers meet. The village was called Metepenagiag and, here for nearly 3000 years, generation after generation flourished. The river provided an abundance of fish while the forests offered shelter and many other necessities of life.
Today, we the Mi'kmaq people of Metepenagiag(Red Bank), have not forgotten our ancestors nor our deep bond with the Miramichi River. The words of our Elders, a renewed spirituality and our nationally recognized historic sites (Augustine Mound, Oxbow), have combined to awaken the past, to rekindle cultural pride and to offer hope to future generations.
Our community overlooks the picturesque Little Southwest Miramichi Metepenagiag-tjijagamitj eimootltjig- Where Spirits Live brings you in touch with this unique place and a special people. Come and view our award winning movie, listen to our songs and stories, see the tools used by our distant ancestors or shop for a unique gift hand crafted by our Mi'kmaq artisans.
The exhibit, although closed, can be viewed at the Metepenagiag Conference Center, by appointment. Please call the Outdoor Adventure Lodge to book an appointment, at (506) 836-6128.
Our current exhibit offers a mere glimpse of what our community has to offer. In partnership with various agencies and organizations, we at Red Bank First Nation are planning to develop a Heritage Park. The future Park will be a place where our culture and heritage can be fully experienced and appreciated. For today, everyone is welcome to visit and enjoy our preview exhibit.
The Augustine Mound (Otgotagnoenagamigiq)
In 1972, when reading a magazine about the discovery of an ancient burial ground in Arizona, Joseph Mike Augustine remembered a similar mound nearby. He could remember going there with his father years before and that is when his curiosity was sparked. The next day he took his shovel and went to inspect the mound. His findings were unbeliveable. When he brought them home, his oldest daughter, Madeline thought that her father had found gold because Joe handled the artifacts with such care. He told her what he had remembered the day before and that he had gone today to inspect. So he took her along the next day and together they found the links to the past that were aged more than 2000 years. Later this mound that Joe had remembered, was named after him. "The Augustine Mound" and a nearby hunting ground proved that there was life in this area more than 2000 years ago.
Years of study at the Oxbow village site have provided excellent information concerning the Miramichi Mi'kmaq of the past. The Oxbow archaeology established the Mi'kmaq community of Red Bank as New Brunswick's oldest occupied village. Metepenagiag is truly an ancient place.
Although it was farmed until 40 years ago, the Oxbow site is today covered by a dense growth of hawthorn bushes. Prior to European contact this same land served as a Mi'kmaq fishing village for over 2500 years.
At Oxbow and at the other large ancient Metepenagiag villages the record of settlement is sparce during the 16th and 17th centuries.
In the spring of 1995 "The Village of Thirty Centuries" was released to the public.
This movie, which took three years in the making, is about The thirty century year old community of Metepenagiag.
To purchase this video you may contact :
Metepenagiag Heritage Park
Phone: (506) 836-6118
Metepenegiag - New Brunswick's Oldest Village
The traditional name for the native community of Red Bank on the Northwest Miramichi river is Metepenagiag. Since 1975 over one hundred archaeological sites have been discovered in the Red Bank area. Several ancient campsites and a ceremonial site have been excavated. In recognition of their outstanding contribution to Canadian history both the Oxbow and the Augustine Mound sites have been declared National Historic Sites by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada. Joseph Augustine, the Red Bank resident who first recognized the cultural and historical value of these sites, has been presented with New Brunswick's distinguished Award for Heritage.
The Red Bank archeological research has produced evidence about how the Miramichi Micmac lived in the past. This richly illustrated book offers a glimpse of what life may have been like at Metepenagiag prior to the coming of the Europeans.
Archaeologist Patricia Allen has enjoyed over ten years of research in New Brunswick's Miramichi district. Work at Red Bank's Ancient Oxbow site inspired this publication.
This book may be purchased
Metepenagiag Heritage Park
2156 Micmac Rd., Red Bank, NB
or by contacting us by
phone at 506-836-6118,
via Fax at 506-836-6186,
The price of the book is $12.00 Canadian
We accept Visa or Cheque
*This exhibit is a joint project of the Red
Bank First Nation; the New Brunswick Department of Municipalities,
Culture and Housing; the New Brunswick Regional Development Corporation;
the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development; and the
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency - Canada/New Brunswick Regional
Economic Development Agreement.