It’s Bread & Cheese, a celebration rooted in nationhood

There isn’t anything more symbolic of nationhood than Six Nations annual Bread and Cheese celebrations. To outsiders, it looks like an odd festival, people lining up for a hunk of cheese and bread but the history that brought the Haudenosaunee to this endearing day is anything but odd…its about nationhood. Bread and Cheese began in the 1800’s when Queen Victoria, who did not want her loyal allies, the Five Nations, or Haudenosaunee, (remember there were no band councils then), to go hungry on her birthday so she provided gifts of bread and cheese. The Haudenosaunee Confederacy oversaw the distribution of the bread and cheese. The day continued to be celebrated with the Crown gifts stopping in 1901 when Queen Victoria died. The day has always marked Six Nations participating, in…

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