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To Repatriate The Original Squamish Place Names

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The Squamish Peoples had their own country prior to the arrival of European settlers.

Names of European lords and captains with little to no connection to this beautiful land replaced the original names.

In 2014, the City of Vancouver acknowledged and declared itself on the unceded territory of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh people.

Decades of Residential School shielded Canadians away from the real history of our homelands, and deprived Indigenous peoples of our right to transmit our language & cultures to our families.

It’s time for Municipalities, parks boards, and regional authorities to continue the work of redress and justice for Indigenous cultures by assisting in the reclaiming of the original names.

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Where Do We Reclaim First?

Jericho Beach

JERICHO BEACH

Iy̓ál̓mexw

The Jericho Beach name comes from Jeremiah Rogers, an operator for a logging camp in the area in 1860’s. The name is said to be "either a corruption of "Jerry's Cove" or else as a corruption of his company's name, Jerry & Co.".

Iy̓ál̓mexw was recorded by our elders as once being settlement where Squamish people lived prior to European contact. Ancestors of present-day Musqueam people were said by our southern relatives to also have once be living there as well. The name, pronounced iyál̓məxʷ in Squamish and ʔəy̓ál̓məxʷ in downriver Halkomelem, was said by language speakers of both languages to mean "good land" or "good spring water".

Would you like to learn more about Iy̓ál̓mexw?

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BOWEN ISLAND

Nex̱wlélex̱m

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THE LIONS

Ch’ich’íy̓uy / Elhx̱wín̓

Giuseppe Garibaldi was a famous Italian military and political leader. He also never set foot in Canada or BC. Mount Garibaldi was named by Captain George Henry Richards in 1980.

Nch’ḵáy̓ refers to Mount Garibaldi and the Cheekeye River that flows from it. Sch’eḵ’ is the Squamish word for "dirty" and ay̓ is a suffix refer to "place". Thus Nch’ḵay̓ means "Dirty Place". This sacred mountain is a well known mountain that the Squamish People tied their canoes to during the last Great Flood.

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MOUNT GARIBALDI

Nch’ḵáy̓

Where To Start?

BUY

Khatsalano-Poster-v4

1937 Khatsahlano Place Name Map

Available for order for $35 + shipping. This special 27’’ x 40’’ glossy poster is a re-issuing of the 1937 Squamish Place Name Map done by Vancouver archivist Major Mathews and Squamish historian August Jack Khatsahlano. The map shows places where Squamish language speakers had names for.

VISIT

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OhThePlaces.com

OhThePlaces.com is a interactive place name map showing areas used and remembered by Squamish Language speakers. Place names added show pronunciation by syllable, designation of the area, and interpretations of the names into English.