Missing Patients

Welcome to the Missing Patients Initiative Research Guide by the Manitoba Indigenous Tuberculosis History Project (MITHP). This guide has been developed to assist Indigenous families and communities searching for loved ones who were sent to Indian hospitals and sanatoriums in Manitoba and never returned home again. This Guide is specific to Manitoba tuberculosis hospitals that operated from the 1930s to the 1960s.

Fifty years after the end of the sanatorium system in Manitoba, the burial sites of many patients remain unknown to their families. We extend our heartfelt condolences and support to Indigenous families and communities who continue to grieve these losses. The research for the Guide is led by MITHP Postdoctoral Fellow Dr. Anne Lindsay, a historian and a former archivist for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the National Center for Truth and Reconciliation.

As our research has expanded, our research on burials and missing patients increasingly includes locating the burial sites of missing residential school students who were transferred from residential schools to TB hospitals. As such, the Guide responds to the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and particularly to Calls 74 and 75 relating to Missing Children and Burial Information.

Historical research is meticulous, intensive, and often slow. We will publish updates to the Missing Patients Initiative content as our work progresses. Check back regularly. We thank you for your patience.

Dr. Anne Lindsay, Postdoctoral Fellow and Research Lead for the Guide, provides an introduction to and overview of the Guide

Who is this Guide for?

We have created this Research Guide to assist families and communities who are searching for information about First Nations, Inuit, and Métis patients who attended Indian hospitals and sanatoriums in Manitoba from the 1930s through the 1960s. This Guide is designed to provide support for research into the burial sites of missing Indigenous patients, but many of the resources can also provide information about patients’ time in the hospitals.

Where do I search for my family member’s name?

This site is not a database of names, records, or other information about particular people. You will not find lists of names here. What you will find is information about how to conduct your own research in the many databases and archives that may hold the answers you are seeking.

Cemetery in the winter, showing rows of white crosses marking graves

Anglican Cemetery, Sioux Valley Dakota Nation, February 2022. Between at least 1950 and 1958, patients from the Brandon Indian Sanatorium whose families could not pay for their remains to be returned home were buried in the 'Oak River' Anglican cemetery at Sioux Valley Dakota Nation. This arrangement was made between Indian Health Services and the Oak River (Sioux Valley) Band Council. In 1958, the Oak River Band Council terminated the agreement.