Lac La Croix

16mm film, 1988, 57 minutes.
Produced and directed by Judith Doyle. Cinematography by Steven Deme. Edited by David McIntosh. Assistant Director : Greg Woodbury. Narration and Original Music by members of the Lac La Croix community. In English with Ojibway translated by family members.

Lac La Croix First Nation is a small community of 240 people in the late 1980s, about 400 now in 2015. Located on the Canada-US boundary waters, it is surrounded by thousands of square miles of wilderness parkland - Quetico Park in Ontario and Superior National Forest in upstate Minnesota. The film is a beautiful and rare self-portrait of a Northwestern Ontario First Nation, its daily life and struggle for existence. When the parks were formed, ancestors were removed from their traditional lands within Quetico Park, enduring terrible hardships and upheaval. Elders speak of these treaty violations. Members of the Lac La Croix Guides Association use small motorboats to guide sports fishermen on a few isolated lakes; this is resisted by advocates for an uninterrupted canoe-only wilderness park experience for tourists. The ironies are not lost on the guides, Elders and community members who tell Lac La Croix's story with grace, wit and lots of original music.

The film includes first-person accounts of the residential school system, the fight against welfare dependancy, and daily life experience. Lac La Croix was made with the full cooperation of the Lac La Croix community. In the film many speak about their lives and their current political struggles including treaty rights, the environment, and the culture and history of the Lac La Croix Ojibway peoples of northwestern Ontario. This is a film about Native community fighting successfully for survival, blending the old and the new.

TE BWE WIN (Truth) : Stories by an Ojibway Healer

By Ron Geyshick with Judith Doyle, 1989, 174 pp. ISBN 0-920197-85-X

Link to full .pdf copy of the book - all rights reserved.

Te Bwe Win (Truth) is a pioneering work of Ojibway literature. By turns haunting, humourous, fantastic and powerful, the stories in this collection explore the traditional spiritual world of the Ojibway, as experienced by Ron Geyshick, a healer and guide from the Lac La Croix reserve in a remote part of Northern Ontario.
Part of the extraordinary charm of these tales comes from the ease with which Ron Geyshick moves between the world of snowmobiles, outboard motors and All-Star Wrestling on the VCR, and the mysterious and eternal natural symbols that inhabit his people's spiritual heritage. TE BWE WIN (Truth) is quite simply, a beautifully written introduction to a world we've barely known.

Judith Doyle, a frequent visitor at Lac La Croix, has added several stories of her own, to illustrate daily life on the reserve and provide additional context for the spiritual concerns that dominate the collection.

Several of Ron Geyshick's stories from Te Bwe Win are included in An Anthology of Canadian Native Literature in English, edited by Daniel David Moses, Terry Goldie and Armand Garnet Ruffo, 1990. ISBN 13: 9780195443530.

Link to Ron Geyshick's handwritten first draft of several stories in Te Bwe Win - all rights reserved

Ron Geyshick's handwritten first draft of several stories in Te Bwe Win (Truth).
(a .pdf copy - all rights reserved)

Link to Transcripts of interviews with community members - all rights reserved

For the film Lac La Croix, Judith Doyle conducted interviews in 1987 with Elders and community members. Here is a link to transcripts of interviews with the following people : Steve Jourdain, Ron Geyshick, Steve Jourdain Sr., Mary Jourdain and Mary Labot, Steve Jourdain Jr. and Stacey Boshey, Amelia Burnside, Debbie and Robert Atatise, Jay Hamberg, Leon Jourdain, Art Ottertain and Gord Jourdain.