The Six Nations of the Grand River Territory is the largest First Nation in Canada, and comprises the six Iroquois nations (Mohawk, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, Seneca and Tuscarora) that make up the Iroquois or Haudenosaunee Confederacy who live in this one territory outside of Brantford, Ontario. The Grand River is one of the cleanest rivers in Ontario and achieved Canadian Heritage River status in 1994. It flows south approximately 300km long through Grand Valley, Elora, Waterloo, Kitchener, Brantford, Six Nations and Cayuga before emptying into the north shore of Lake Erie.
The Great Law of Peace was the founding constitution of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. Established prior to the major waves of European colonialization, the Great Law brought together the then five feuding nations (Mohawk, Onondaga, Oneida, Cayuga and Seneca) into the democratic Iroquois League. Once united, the Iroquios became a mighty force predominantly during the 17th and 18th centuries. The Tuscarora joined the confederacy in 1722.
The Iroquois are a matrilineal society, meaning Clan and Nation ties are passed through the mother to her children. The Henrys and Longboats are two prominent families of carvers of the Onondaga Nation. Ben Henry is a member of the Deer Clan whereas his wife Loreene and sons are members of the Turtle Clan.