Wayne Plume creates dozens of simple white crosses as grave
markers. These carry the names and dates of the deceased in
the six cemeteries of the Blood people, located on their vast
reserve in southern Alberta. Their culture was centuries old
before the first pioneers arrived and the cemeteries represent but
a few pages of their memory. Many early graves were unmarked due
to the rash of deaths from epidemics during the late 1800s.
Lethbridge Herald writer Garry Allison tells the story of Mr.
Plume and the challenge of keeping the memory of the Blood people
alive in these cemeteries.
In 1986, the Blood Tribe Education Committee founded Red Crow
Community College. Initially an adult education center with
high school and university courses, the College has expanded its
programs to become the first tribal college in Canada.
Located on the grounds of the former St. Mary's Residential School
near Cardston, Red Crow Community College is key to maintaining
the integrity of the Blood people while facing the challenges of
This digital collection was
produced with financial assistance from Canada's Digital
Collections initiative, Industry Canada.