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Calder Case
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Land and Culture
Early Days
Sir James Douglas
Land Question
Early Native Protests
Unlawful to Protest
1969 White Paper
Calder Case
Coolican Report
Gitskan - Wet'suwet'en
Works Cited

The Calder Case

Coincidental with the release of the White Paper, the Nisga'a Tribal Council brought a law suit against the government of British Columbia (Calder et al v. Attorney General of British Columbia (Cumming)) declaring that their aboriginal rights had not been extinguished. The Nisga'a claim was rejected in the Supreme Court of B.C. and the B.C. Court of Appeals before being heard in the Supreme Court of Canada. Although a split occurred in the Supreme Court of Canada on whether or not title had been extinguished, six out seven judges agreed that aboriginal title existed in Canadian law. Prime Minister Trudeau observed, "Perhaps you had more legal rights than we thought you had when we did the White Paper."