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Day Star First Nation

Day Star First Nation is located in the Southeastern segment of Saskatchewan near the town of Punnichy, with land also near Last Mountain Lake.

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Day Star is located in the Southeastern segment of Saskatchewan near the town of Punnichy. The First Nation is 6724 hectares in size with a population of 528, of which 150 live on reserve.

Prior to signing Treaty 4 on September 15, 1874, Chief Day Star (Kii-si-caw-ah-chuck) and his people hunted near the south branch of the Saskatchewan River. A reserve was surveyed in September 1876, with alterations made to the boundary in 1881 and 1888. Day Star remained chief until his death in 1892. Initially, cultivation was done using spades and hoes, and a plot known as the “community garden” was maintained by the whole reserve. The community developed a fine herd of cattle, each farmer keeping his herd until they numbered 10 to 12 animals, then giving half of them to someone else who could then get started. After the band received walking ploughs they began to grow wheat, barley, and oats, and with the arrival of the railway in Lipton in 1905 an outlet was created for the sale of their produce.

In 1946 Chief Kinequon and Willie Buffalo purchased the first tractor, and as more modern equipment appeared, people began to farm as individuals. Social events involved a variety of games including football for men and lacrosse for women, as well as horse racing, rodeos, and powwows; after a hall was built in 1938, dances and bingo parties were also held. In 1953 a hockey team was organized,and bingo parties were held to raise money for equipment. The 6,724-ha reserve is located 16 km north of Punnichy, with land also near Last Mountain Lake.