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In 1725-6 the British colonial government of Nova Scotia signed a treaty of friendship and peace with the local Mi'kmaq people. This treaty explicitly acknowledged the co-existence of Mi'kmaq and British law - but much of its meaning stemmed from its complex negotiation, which was influenced by the history of aboriginal-European relations in Acadia prior to 1726. William Wicken argues that after 1749 a more forceful British military presence led officials to re-interpret the treaty in the light of its own interests.;From 1994 to 1996, the author was a witness for the defence at the Marshall trial, during which the Supreme Court of Canada integrated aboriginal perspectives on treaty-making into current interpretations. Dr Wicken was one of the historians who gathered and presented the historical evidence to the court.