People and Organizations

Indigenous Peoples


  • Pre-contact: The Kingston and Frontenac area, known traditionally as Katarokwi, has been occupied by Indigenous peoples dating back to the Paleo-Indian period 11,000 years ago. It is the traditional territory of the Anishinaabek and Haudenosaunee Nations.
  • 1600s: Prior to the 1660s, the Haudenosaunee were confined to their historic homeland south of Lake Ontario. However, by 1670 there were at least 6 villages on the northern shore: Ganestiquiagona, a Seneca settlement; Cayuga settlements at Ganaraské, and Quintéat;  and Ganneious, at the site of present day Napanee, was an Oneida settlement.
  • 1700s: The Mississauga peoples become the main occupants of this area following several decades of Mohawk-French tensions that resulted in their abandonment of the north shore settlements. However, this territory is still recognized as the domain of the Mohawks and in recognition of their loyalty to the British crown, they were granted a tract of land along the Bay of Quinte. In 1784 about 20 Mohawk families resettled there, and since then the community has grown and become the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory reservation, which is the nearest reservation to the Kingston-Frontenac area.
  • 1800s: The Mississuaga were largely displaced from the Katarokwi region and re-established on Grape Island, though some still lived a traditional lifestyle in the Frontenac backwoods. The Algonquin community of Shabot Obaadjiwan was offered a reservation in Bedford Township in 1844, which was declined, and members of Shabot Obaadjiwan chose to remain in the Sharbot Lake area with non-native families. 
  • 1900s: An urban Indigenous community made of people from many First Nations, Metis and Inuit groups formed in Kingston. This prompted the creation of a Friendship Centre as well as centres for Indigenous Students at Queens University and St. Lawrence College.
  • Today, the urban Indigenous community in Katarokwi is still thriving, as are the neighboring communities of Tyendinaga, Shabot Obaadjiwan and Ardoch Algonquin First Nation.

Below, you can access resources from the Kingston Frontenac Public Library that pertain to local Indigenous history. We acknowledge that many of these sources were written by non-Indigenous people, and there may be inaccuracies within them. For the best information about local Indigenous history, we recommend reaching out to community Elders and knowledge keepers. 



Indian Lore of the Bay of Quinte

Robb, Wallace Havelock. "Indian Lore of the Bay of Quinte." Historic Kingston, Vol 2 (1953), pages 40-51.

Also available online via Internet Archive.

Joseph Brant: Kingston’s Founding Father?

Quinn, Kevin. "Joseph Brant: Kingston’s Founding Father?" Historic Kingston, Vol 28  (1980), pages 73-84.         

Kingston, Bedford. Grape Island, Alnwick: The Odyssey of the Kingston Mississauga

Osborne, Brian. "Kingston, Bedford. Grape Island, Alnwick: The Odyssey of the Kingston Mississauga."  Historic Kingston, Vol 43  pp. 84-111.           

Life and education of Joseph Brant

Baxter, Jean Rae. "Life and education of Joseph Brant." Historic Kingston, Vol 64 (2016), pages 94-108.

Includes early life and Molly Brant; education and the establishment of Moor’s Indian Charity School, later to become Dartmouth College.

Molly Brant

Thomas, Earle. "Molly Brant." Historic Kingston, Vol 37 (1989), pp. 141-149     

Molly Brant: Who was she really?

Bazeley, Susan. "Molly Brant: Who was she really?" Historic Kingston, Vol 45 (1997), pages 9-22.

Includes a description of Molly Brant's life in Mohawk valley, her role in the American War, her life in Cataraqui, and the archaeology of Brant properties.

Speech of Donald Maracle, Chief, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, for the Molly Brant Commemoration held Sunday, 25 August 1996.

Maracle, Donald. "Speech of Donald Maracle, Chief, Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, for the Molly Brant Commemoration held Sunday, 25 August 1996." Historic Kingston, vol. 46, 1998, pp. 3-8.                     

The Land and Waters We Share

Brennan, Terri-Lynn. "The Land and Waters We Share." Historic Kingston Vol 70 (2020), page 3.

Brief introduction to Historic Kingston and some of Brennan’s work in the Kingston area to bring the Indigenous history and presence into conversation with settler history.

The North-West Rebellion of 1885

Fleming, Patsy. "The North-West Rebellion of 1885: A View from Kingston Discusses the Kingston troops that were deployed to put down the rebellion." Historic Kingston, Vol 50 (2002), pp. 77-82.    

The Pre-Contact Occupation of the Kingston Area

Adams, Nick. "The Pre-Contact Occupation of the Kingston Area: an Archaeological Consultants View Looks at archeological evidence of Indigenous occupation in the Kingston Frontenac region dating back to the Paleo-Indian period." Historic Kingston, Vol 50 (2002), pages 85-98.


Ganounkouesnot: The Long Island Standing Up

150 Years - 150 Women - 150 Stories

Back of Sunset: a History of Central Frontenac Township

Buckskin To Broadloom: Kingston Grows Up

Stories first appeared in Kingston's Whig-standard.

Count Frontenac

See also the 1906 edition (Makers of Canada series) free online via Internet Archive.

Joseph Brant

Junior biography. Life, exploits and impact of Joseph Brant.

Journey of my Lord Count Frontenac to Lake Ontario

French original by Jean Lechasseur ca. 1633-1713, translated with introduction and notes by James S. Pritchard.

  • Title of original French text: Voyage de Monsieur le comte de Frontenac au Lac Ontario en 1673.
  • Text in French with English translation on opposite pages.
  • Introduction and notes in English.
  • Believed to have been written by Frontenac's secretary, Jean Lechasseur.

Kingston 300: a Social Snapshot, by Kingstonians

Kingston: Building on the Past

See also the new edition of this book (2011)

Royal Fort Frontenac

Texts selected and translated from the French by Richard A. Preston. Edited with introduction and notes by Leopold Lamontagne (1958).) 

The Story of Old Kingston

Also available online via Internet Archive.

Unusual Facts of Canadian History

Wolfe Island: A Legacy in Stone