Riel became involved in armed insurrections and led two rebellions against the government of Canada and its first post-Confederation prime minister, John A. Macdonald, currently, the position is holding Justin Trudeau. Riel aimed to preserve Métis culture and rights at a time when their lands were coming under Canadian domain.
He carried out his first act of resistance during the Red River Rebellion, 1869–1870. This led to an agreement between Riel and the government of Canada and helped negotiate the terms for the formation of the modern province of Manitoba. Later, Riel ordered the execution of a person named Thomas Scott and fled to the US to escape prosecution.
While still living the life of a fugitive, he was elected thrice to the House of Commons in Canada. He never assumed his seat, though. During his years in America, he was frustrated by the fact that he could not lead his people to freedom.
Despite this, Riel is frequently referred to as the Father of Manitoba. In 1884, when called upon by the Métis leaders in Saskatchewan to talk to the Canadian government about their grievances, Riel led a military resistance instead.
This is known in history as the North-West Rebellion of 1885. The escalation saw the Canadian government use newly made rail lines to send thousands of soldiers. It ended after Riel's arrest. He was subsequently convicted of high treason.
Rejecting the popular appeal, Prime Minister MacDonald decided to hang him. His execution not only polarized the country into two separate linguistic blocs but also had a lasting impact. It led to the Prairie provinces being controlled by the Anglophones, not Francophones.
Similarly, Riel's portrayal also oscillates between the extremes. While some see him as a grand historical figure who fought for his people, others argue that he is nothing but a half-insane religious bigot.
Riel was a Candian by nationality and belongs to mixed ethnicity of Cree, French Canadian, Ojibwa, Scottish, Saulteaux, and English. He married his long-term girlfriend Marguerite Monet in 1881, in Montana, the United States. The couple was blessed with three Children. Riel died on 16, November in 1885.
Despite being a great politician, Riel never lived a life of luxury. He spent many years in exile facing scarcity and struggling even to fulfill his basic needs so the details of his net worth and salary are not available. Though we can say with certainty that it was a life of economic deprivation.