Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Musqueam Indian Band is a First Nations government in the Canadian province of British Columbia, and is the only Indian band whose reserve lies within the boundaries of the City of Vancouver.
Their traditional language, now nearly extinct, is h-un-q-uh-mi-n-uhm, a subdialect of the Salishan language Halkomelem, and they are closely related to neighbouring peoples of the lower Fraser River. The nearby Kwantlen and Katzie peoples just upriver share the same Hun'qumi'num' dialect, while the upriver Sto:lo people speak another dialect, Halq'əméyləm. The Straits Salish peoples of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands of the southern Gulf of Georgia speak another dialect, Hul'q̱'umi'num.
The Musqueam are the oldest-known residents of Vancouver. Located near their main residential area is the Musqueam midden, a thousands-year old deposit of shells and other household debris. Formerly there was a second residential area near the current one, Mahlie. The area of the Musqueam Reserve is the closest Hudson's Bay Company explorer Simon Fraser made it to the Strait of Georgia; he was driven back by hostile Musqueam who had had bad experiences with white men on ships just previously. The chief Whattlekainum warned Fraser of an impending attack which is said saved his life.
Though today limited to the Fraser River banks of the city, their territory also once included Burrard Inlet until they were displaced

Musqueam Notes

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