Rebellious hereditary chiefs of the Six Nations Reserve near Brantford, Ontario, Mar 5 seized power from the elected council.
LV. The Six Nations Indian's Council house at Oshwegan.
SV. People with placards.
CU. Placard "We Want Chiefs".
LV. People carrying placards.
SV. Man with placard.
SV. The rebels nail proclamation to door.
CU.PAN. Nailing proclamation to door, PAN to man in tribal headgear.
CU. Armband "I.P.".
SV. Man in Indian headdress talking to mountie.
TV. Crowd some wearing tribal headgear.
SV. Mountie talking to man.
CU. Indian reading proclamation.
LV. Crowd applaud.
SV. Chiefs removing hinges from council chamber doors.
CU. Hinges are removed.
LV. Doors are taken off.
SV. Indians enter building.
SV.INT. Indians enter building.
SV.PAN. Chiefs in building.
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Background: Rebellious hereditary chiefs of the Six Nations Reserve near Brantford, Ontario, Mar 5 seized power from the elected council. They then proclaimed themselves a sovereign nation not subject to Canadian laws. Next they sent a cablegram to the Queen, to inform here that the world's newest country had just been born and that they were running it.
Lastly, they wired President Eisenhower, asking for a meeting on March the 19th, to discuss the drawing up of a treaty between the two countries.
Visnews filmed at the Six Nations Indians' council house Oshwegan as one-thousand supporters of the hereditary chiefs stages a bloodless coup. Hastily scribbled homemade placards were hoisted, tribal headgear was donned, harangues were made and an ultimatum given to the half dozen ROMP constables at the scene.
As the rebels nailed a copy of their proclaimed onto the council chamber door, thirteen elected representatives inside quietly left through the back door.
The rebels set up their own Indian Police and told the RCMP -- as they did later to freshly arrived Ontario provincial policemen -- "Don't panic. You have no jurisdiction here."
The Mounties didn't interfere when the chiefs, backed by a crowd of one-thousand supporters, removed the hinges from the council chamber doors and stormed the empty building.
The rebels claim their elected rivals were imposters whose real supporters numbered fewer than six hundred and fifty. All in all, seven-thousand Indians live on the Six-Nations reserve. As far as the new self-elected lawmakers are concerned, the Mounties are now trespassers.
The elective system to which they object was instituted in nineteen twenty-four under the Canadian Indian Act. So far neither the RCMP, nor Ottawa, nor the elected chiefs have reacted to the coup. Neither has President Eisenhower.