Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Mission of St. Ignace II National Historic Site of Canada is located near Georgian Bay in the Township of Tay, Ontario. The region was once Huron-Wendat territory, and the Mission of St. Ignace II speaks to the evacuation of Huronia in the second half of the 17th century. While the specific location of Saint Ignace II remains unclear the designated area consists of abandoned farmland covered by second growth forest surrounding an open meadow. In the meadow, under an open sided shelter, stands a large cobblestone cross erected by the Society of Jesus commemorating the martyrdom of Fathers Breboeuf and Lalement. Official recognition refers to the west half of Lot 6, Concession 9, in the Township of Tay, Ontario.
The Mission of St. Ignace II was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1955 because:
- following the capture of the missionaries Jean de Brebeuf and Gabriel Lalemant at Saint-Louis mission, they were brought back to Saint Ignace II and killed here; and
- the destruction of Saint Ignace II and nearby Saint-Louis, in the same attack by the Iroquois on 16 March 1649, sealed the fate of the Huron-Wendat confederacy, leading to the abandonment of their traditional homeland.
St. Ignace II was one of several Jesuit mission sites in the territory of the Huron-Wendat in the mid-1600s. On 16 March 1649, the Huron-Wendat village and Jesuit mission of St. Ignace II was attacked by the Five Nations Iroquois. Once St. Ignace II was captured, the Iroquois continued west and that same morning attacked the village and mission of St. Louis, capturing the Jesuit missionaries Brebeuf and Lalement. The missionaries were brought back to St. Ignace II and killed there the following day. The raids made clear to the Huron-Wendat that they were not safe from destructive attacks in their homeland, and it initiated a chain of events that led to the abandonment of Huronia in 1650.
Sources: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, May 1955, May 2007.
Key elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include:
- the site’s location near Waubushene, Ontario, in an area that was historic Huronia;
- its geographic relationship with other important Huronia sites, including: Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons Mission, Saint-Louis Mission and Fort Sainte Marie II National Historic Sites of Canada;
- the surrounding landscape views of farmland, wooded areas, and the Sturgeon River;
- the integrity of any surviving or as yet unidentified archaeological remains which may be found within the site in their original placement and extent.
Government of Canada
Historic Sites and Monuments Act
National Historic Site of Canada
1649/01/01 to 1649/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
- Battle Site
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Québec
Cross-Reference to Collection