Biographies

Biography of Nault, André, 1830-1924

Born on Point Douglas in 1830, André Nault eventually settled on lot 12, Parish of St. Vital where he led a fairly quiet life, farming and hunting to support a large family. He was among the armed Métis who called for the end of the HBC fur-trade monopoly at the Sayer trial in 1849. It was on Nault’s property that Louis Riel and his Métis followers stopped the Dominion government surveyors under J.S. Dennis on October 11, 1869, an event which marked the beginning of the Red River Resistance. A supporter of the Métis’ provisional government, Nault oversaw the construction of a barrier at St. Norbert to prevent Lieutenant-Governor designate William McDougall from entering the territory. After forcing McDougall’s men to return to Pembina on November 1st, he was dispatched with his men to Fort Garry where the Métis seized the fort, and the provisional government took command of the colony. Nault was then sent to Pembina to watch over McDougall’s actions until the latter’s departure for Ottawa at the end of December. Involved in the capture of supporters of the Canadian party, he also presided over the execution of prisoner Thomas Scott on March 4, 1870. In the summer of 1870, a target of Wolseley’s troops because of his role in Scott’s execution, Nault was forced to seek exile in the United States. When he returned to Canada, he was arrested at his home in February 1874 and spent a year in prison before standing trial along with Ambroise Lépine for the murder of Scott. At his trial, the jury was divided, and concerns for his state of health led to his being released on bail, while awaiting the long –promised amnesty. Nault then retired from public life. He died in 1924, at the age of 94. Based on information from La Société historique de Saint-Boniface.

Mentioned in:

records

  1. Déclaration de 1908 d'André Nault, Elzéar Lagimodière et Duncan McDougall concernant les événements de 1869-70, extrait, fo. 353-54
  2. Déclaration de 1908 d'André Nault, Elzéar Lagimodière et Duncan McDougall concernant les événements de 1869-70, extraits, fo. 357-358 et 367
  3. Déclaration de 1908 d'André Nault, Elzéar Lagimodière et Duncan McDougall concernant les événements de 1869-70, extrait, fo. 369
  4. Déclaration de 1908 d'André Nault, Elzéar Lagimodière et Duncan McDougall concernant les événements de 1869-70, extraits, fo. 383-384 et 389-390

diaries

  1. Jean-Baptiste Ladéroute, "Mémoires des troubles du Manitoba 1869-70", extrait, p. 25-30
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