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The Association des Acadiens-Métis Souriquois (AAMS) of Nova Scotia, Canada, is an Acadiens-Métis organization; therefore, proof of Acadien and Aboriginal ancestry is required of its members. The term, “Souriquois”, means “salt water men” and was commonly used by early French explorers and settlers of our lands to describe the Mi’kmaw People of the Nova Scotia mainland and sea coast – thus distinguishing the Mi'kmaw from other Indian tribes.
As Acadiens-Métis Souriquois we are defined as having a distinct Indigenous identity that comprises the combined ancestries of primarily French and First Nations women and men. Our European ancestors arrived on the East Coast of North America in what is now Nova Scotia in the early 17th century, before these North American lands were under the control of any European nation.
Indigenous women and men freely and willingly intermarried with European settlers. We are, therefore, descendants of two peoples: French (primarily) and First Nations. Our ancestors' Acadiens-Métis lineages and historic presence in l'Acadie during the early 17th century are certainly a matter of historical record, and we honour the early unions that occurred among European and Indigenous peoples. They are the foundation of our Acadiens-Métis Souriquois heritage and culture. Our Acadiens-Métis Souriquois language, traditions, history, surnames, lineages, tight-knit communities, and traits are in fact preserved, honored, accepted, recognized, and celebrated by all who belong to the Association des Acadiens-Métis Souriquois.