The Meekis Family of Sandy Lake, Ontario
Sandy Lake First Nation is dominated by a few key families,
descendents of the founders who came from the Little Crane and Red Sucker clans.
The five main clans and their surnames are:
the Suckers (Fiddler, Goodman, Harper),
the Pelicans (Meekis),
the Cranes (Kakegamic, Kakepetum),
the Caribou (Linklater, Rae), and the Sturgeon (Mamakeesic)
Violet Meekis Fiddler came to Gatineau in the summer of 1969, invited by Bobbi Graham to become accustomed to life in "the south" before being sent out to high school in southern Ontario. After graduation, she returned to Sandy Lake to marry Morris Fiddler, from the family that produced Sandy Lake's first chief.
In 1975, Bobbi visited Sandy Lake, met Fraser and Adelaide Meekis and the rest of their large family. As a result of the close connection Bobbi & Adelaide developed, Joe Meekis elected to come to Ottawa for high school, as did Paul, a year later. Both lived for a period of time with Bobbi in Gatineau. Bobbi wrote an article about her visit for the Ottawa Citizen, which was also carried in other papers owned by Southam News. She then wrote another article when Joe was going to high school in Ottawa. This was before computers, so we have only print copies of these. But there are a few photos at the bottom of his page of these articles.
Violet obtained a B.A. in Education and teaches grade 7 in Sandy Lake. Joe is the CEO of the Sandy Lake First Nation, and Paul and his wife completed degrees in the Native Language Teachers Program.
Members of the main clans have intermarried, so similar surnames appear frequently in the family tree. Adelaide was a Goodman. The oldest daughter, Georgina, was married to Joshim Kakegamick, a famous artist in the Norval Morrisseau tradition, who died in a tragic snowmobile accident. Other notable artists from Sandy Lake include Carl Ray and Rocky Fiddler.
Read an article Bobbi wrote about Sandy Lake HERE
and another about the founding of the Sandy Lake First Nation HERE
MEEKIS FAMILY TREE
Note: names in parentheses are deceased
The Meekis Family (undated)
The family in 2014
Adelaide on her 80th birthday, September, 2014:
LEFT: with "the gals": Violet, Charity, NoraJane, Donna, Evelyn, Georgina
RIGHT: with "the boys"
(Fraser) & (Adelaide) Meekis
We're very sad to have to announce the
death of Adelaide Meekis on December 23, 2015.
Some favorite photos of her are at the bottom of this page.
Georgina & (Joshim) Kakegamic:
Violet & Morris Fiddler:
Evelyn & Gordon Tait:
Joe & Emily:
Paul & Mary:
Norris & Nida
Donna Marie Brunton:
(Delilah) & (Roger):
Charlie & Heather:
Elton & Sharon
Another old photo of some of the Meekis kids. I'm guessing this was in the early 1970s, and the kids are, from oldest (right) to youngest, Joe, Paul, Norris, Nora Jane, Delilah, Fraser and Oliver.
Morris & Violet Fiddler, with their first
Joe & Emily at home in Sandy Lake
Joe with Pierre, son of his daughter Jemima.
Paul's graduation photo.
Two of Paul & Mary's grand-daughters:
Fraser and his kids with Adelaide.
Heather & Kaleb, visiting Bobbi in Gatineau in Nov. 2019
Leta & Adelaide, visiting Bobbi in Gatineau in Nov. 2019
Stephanie Charity with Adelaide, 2014
Nora Jane and Scott at his graduation.
Peter in his Pow-Wow regalia
Violet and Peter, spring 2015
Morris & Violet with Peter and Adrian in
On the left, the full page article in the
Here is one of the photos from the Vancouver
At the left, the article from the Ottawa Citizen
Below is a close up of the photo. This article appeared
This is the moosehide vest that Adelaide made for me after I visited Sandy Lake in 1975.
It's hard to see the detail, but everything is hand-stitched, with moosehide laces holding bordering all edges and the fringe.
It's a precious item that I've displayed in my home for many years, rather than storing it when I'm not wearing it.