This year marks the 225th anniversary of the Canandaigua Treaty, which was signed on November 11, 1794 by the Hodinöhsö:ni' (Six Nations Confederacy) and the infant federal government of the United States. Following the Revolutionary War, the treaty established peace between the nations and between the confederacy and the US, and recognized the sovereignty and territorial rights of the confederacy. But in numerous selfish and dishonest acts over the years, the United States has violated and continues to violate treaties both locally and nationwide. The annual commemoration of the treaty at the site of its signing is held as both a celebration of Indigenous cultural resiliency and sovereignty, as well as a reminder of the peace that the Hodinöhsö:ni' wanted, and still uphold.
This year's commemoration event will feature a Native American art and craft sale at the Canandaigua Primary School Gym (11 a.m. to 6 p.m., 96 West Gibson Street). From noon to 4 p.m., attendees can head to the Ontario County Historical Society (55 North Main Street) to view one of only two original copies of the treaty and related letters. At 1:30 p.m., Hodinöhsö:ni' chiefs will lead a march from the primary school, followed by representatives from their nations and the United States, and the general public, to the Ontario County Courthouse lawn, where Ganondagan State Historic Site Manager Peter Jemison (Seneca) will open the ceremony with the traditional Thanksgiving Address at 2 p.m. And back at the primary school auditorium at 5:30 p.m., Jemison will present this year's keynote speech, shedding light on the significance of the Canandaigua Treaty.
The Canandaigua Treaty Commemoration ceremony and celebration take place Monday, November 11, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. in Canandaigua. Free and open to all. 742-1690; ganondagan.org.