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Montreal street to be renamed Atateken after Amherst's fall from grace

Last Updated Jun 21, 2019 at 2:51 pm EST

Credit - Emily Campbell - CityNews

MONTREAL — A Montreal street named after the British general Jeffery Amherst is being renamed Atateken Street in honour of the local Indigenous population.

Mayor Valerie Plante, Ghislain Picard, head of the Assembly of First Nations of Quebec and Labrador, and Mohawk leaders were on hand to announce the end of Amherst Street.

Atateken is a Mohawk word that means brother and sister.

The street had long been named for the general who oversaw the capitulation of Montreal on Sept. 8, 1760.

Amherst is accused of using blankets that he knew were contaminated with smallpox to quell Indigenous rebellions. His name appears across the continent and can be seen in such places as the town of Amherst, N.S., and Amherstburg, Ont.

Announcing the change on National Indigenous Peoples Day, Plante said the name is a significant step towards reconciliation. The name will become official at the end of the summer.

The Canadian Press