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Minn. writer Cochrane shares the story of John and Tchi-Ki-Wis Linklater

Headshot of Timothy Cochrane next to the cover of his book "Making the Carry", which shows a portrait of a man and woman next to a photograph of them working near a fire at a camp.
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Forest History Center
Timothy Cochrane is the author of "Making the Carry," a biography of John and Tchi-Ki-Wis Lanklater, a Métis man and Anishinaabe woman.

John and Tchi-Ki-Wis Linklater made a home in northeastern Minnesota in the early 20th century during a time of great changes in the region.

Minnesota writer Timothy Cochrane's new book, Making the Carry: The Lives of John and Tchi-Ki-Wis Linklater, tells us the story of a Métis man and an Anishinaabe woman who lived along the Canadian borderlands in the late 19th century.

Cochrane noted John Linklater was quite popular at the time. Scholars, guides, reporters and the like sought Linklater for his knowledge of the land and people of the region.

Less is known about Tchi-Ki-Wis, however. Cochrane explained it was safer for indigenous women of the time not to talk to whites, even if they knew the English language. As a result, we have fewer stories about them.

But Tchi-Ki-Wis was highly skilled in the craftwork of canoes and moccasins, and was particularly known for her cedar mats.

Making the Carry: The Lives of John and Tchi-Ki-Wis Linklater is published by the University of Minnesota Press.


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Tammy works at Bemidji State University's library, and she hosts "What We're Reading," a show about books and authors.