Trochu and District Museum showcases the richness of Cree Language in “The People’s Language” exhibit

ECA Review/Submitted 
Written by ECA Review

Elder John Sinclair and his wife Suzanne at the opening night of the museum exhibit, Cree: The People’s Language, in Trochu on Tues. Aug 1. They are participating in a drum circle and smudging before everyone proceeded to the museum. ECA Review/Submitted 

Trochu and District Museum hosted “Cree: The People’s Language” exhibit from Aug. 1 – 11 in collaboration with the Language Museum of Canada.

The exhibition’s primary goal was to highlight the immense significance of the Cree language, Canada’s most widely spoken Indigenous language.

Visitors had the opportunity to experience and learn about the cultural vibrancy of the Cree language during the event.

“It was over a year ago that we got word of this exhibit. It was sponsored by the Language Museum of Canada and travelled all over the country. And it was going to be in the area, and we inquired about it,” shared Bill Cunningham, president of Trochu and District Historical Society.

What sparked their curiosity even further was the exhibit’s focal point on the theme of reconciliation, a topic resonating deeply in Canada’s socio-cultural landscape.

“It piqued our interest because the subject was the whole reconciliation thing that was going on. We thought it was quite relevant,” said Cunningham.

Another compelling factor was the presence of a revered Cree elder within the Trochu community.

“Another thing that really made it an easy choice for us is we have a Cree elder who is a resident of our community,” said Cunningham. “As soon as I heard about this, I ran it by him and he enthusiastically endorsed it.”

Cunningham explained that Elder John Sinclair is happy to share his culture with people.

On Aug. 1, opening night for the exhibit, Sinclair, Trochu’s Cree elder, started the evening with smudging and a prayer.

Cunningham said approximately 40 people showed up to the event on opening night and he hopes more continue to come to the exhibit.

Guests could tour the exhibit, which was made up of six panels explaining how the Cree language works.

The exhibit was interactive, allowing guests to write their names in the Cree language, speakers that allowed guests to listen to the dialect of the language and children’s books written in Cree with English translation.

“So it’s quite a good learning experience for everyone,” said Cunningham.


Guests participated in a smudging ceremony and drum circle before going to the museum to see the new exhibit.

The panels in the travelling exhibit will be in Trochu until Aug. 11.

Jessica Campbell
ECA Review

About the author

ECA Review