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Canada 150: Anthropologist chronicled 19th-century First Nations

One of the least recognized but most significant of North America’s anthropologists, James Alexander Teit learned First Nations languages to an astonishing degree of fluency, married a Nlaka’pamux woman, immersed himself totally in tribal culture, and provided famous American anthropologist Franz Boas, who got most of the credit, with a trove of knowledge that might otherwise have been lost forever.

Everyone — First Nations, science, social historians, and today’s politicians — owes him a debt. University of Victoria scholar Wendy Wickwire, who wrote three books with esteemed Okanagan elder Harry Robinson, describes Teit as “one...

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Vancouver's Canada150+ Festivities

Canada150+ festivities this summer will include a weeklong festival in the parking lot across from Queen Elizabeth Theatre, a canoe gathering, and a reconciliation walk through Downtown Vancouver, organizers announced Wednesday.

The festivities mark 150 years since confederation but the ‘+’ symbol acknowledges the thousands of years of Indigenous history and the devastation Aboriginal people experienced at the hands of the Canadian government.

That’s why this summer will take both a...

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Haida language curriculum is now accredited in B.C.

A surprising sound interrupted the Haida Gwaii school board meeting last week woops, cheers,and a round of applause.

Not long before

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The Relationship Between First Nations and Fish Runs in B.C.

The Adams River is running red. Thrashing through the shallows, millions of ruby-coloured Sockeye salmon battle upstream on the final leg of a four-year, 4,000-kilometre round trip that will bring them back uncannily close to their own birthplace by using smell and an internal GPS.

Each female will then lay roughly 4,000 eggs and die; only one of her eggs will manage to return to this very spot in four years as a spawning adult.

That salmon run I experienced as a young teen on vacation with my parents near Shuswap Lake in British Columbia’s...

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Heiltsuk First Nation village among oldest in North America

A Heiltsuk village site on B.C.’s mid-coast is three times as old as the Great Pyramid at Giza and among the oldest human settlements in North America, according to researchers at the Hakai Institute.

The excavation on Triquet Island has already produced extremely rare artifacts, including a wooden projectile-launching device called an atlatl, compound fish hooks and a hand drill used for lighting fires, said Alisha Gauvreau, a PhD student at the University of Victoria. 

The village has been in use for about 14,000 years, based on analysis of charcoal recovered from a hearth...

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