A Canadian Family

Natives, French Canadians & Acadians

Chief Poking Fire | Indian Village & Museum | Caughnawaga, Kahnawake

Chief Poking Fire  Caughnawaga (KA_NA_WA_KE) Indian Reserve, Canada.

from: Unpacking Culture: Art and Commodity in Colonial and Postcolonial Worlds

“Beadwork sells much better in a set-up like Poking Fire than through shops where it will just sit on a shelf,” Leo Diabo remarked …..The Poking Fire “set-up” to which he referred was a tourist attraction developed by John McComber, aslo known as Chief Poking Fire, in the village of Kahnawake in the 1930s. Originally known as “Chief Poking Fire Totum [sic] Pole Indian Village, McComber’s enterprise provided visitors with a highly staged representation of Indians as exotic Others … “


ed.  Ruth B. PhillipsChristopher B. Steiner


Related Posts

Index: Chief Poking Fire Museum & Indian Village, Kahnawake, Quebec

Index: First Peoples Genealogy and History

March 3, 2010 - Posted by | . | ,


  1. I LOVE this picture and the story which goes with it. Wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Beth | March 3, 2010 | Reply

  2. I wanted to thank you for your kind words, thoughts and prayers when our darling Crickette’ died.

    Please do come by for a little surprise I made, in celebration of her life–especially for those who have been so loving and supportive.

    Blessings to you, dear one.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Beth | March 4, 2010 | Reply

  3. love this picture proud to be indian! LOuis DIabo my DADDY!

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by alan McMaster | June 15, 2016 | Reply

  4. I was just remembering how as children living in Chateauguay, years ago we loved to visit the Kahnawke Indian Village. Chief Poken Fire was a celebrity.I always had a good connection with Native Americans and they are among my favorite friends today. Went to school with The Mohawks, played music and fellowshiped with them. Still today. Wish Kahnawke would build a new village. Maybe a nice setting would be near the marina. Nice to see kahnawake has several good restaurants. We visit often.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Pointe Claire | November 15, 2017 | Reply

    • I’d love to see a new village too. One of the challenges is that so many artifacts were lost in the fire. Also, to my understanding, the village of it’s time was presenting a Native cultural mix (Not just Iroquois) so I think a new village would look different.
      A few years ago I remember they were building a new longhouse – I would love to visit something like that.
      Thanks for the comment,


      Comment by Evelyn Yvonne Theriault | November 16, 2017 | Reply

      • Thanks for the reply Evelyn. Even something simple with some outside vendors, traditional dancing etc..
        That island is in such a nice spot. Maybe Kahnawake could do more with it,but at the same time not over develop it.
        PS..my moms name was Evelyn
        All the best,
        David maye

        Liked by 1 person

        Comment by Pointe Claire | November 16, 2017 | Reply

  5. I have a picture of when I was age 6, with a headdress on at this village around 1962. I also have a little plastic telescope keychain from that visit, and when you look through it, there’s a picture of Native Americans in native dress, and below them, the word “Caughnawaga”.


    Comment by Yvette Berard Plouffe | February 2, 2018 | Reply

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