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Sacred Place Names, their Travels, and Stories
Place names are powerful, and their significance extends far beyond words. Learning and embracing the original Indigenous phrases used to describe the world around us acknowledges the impact of colonization, recognizes First Peoples’ ongoing relationship to the land, and honours their traditional way of being. In Snuneymuxw Mulstimuxw, Traditional Knowledge Keeper and respected Elder Geraldine Manson, C’tasi:a offers an extensive survey of the history and meaning of local Hul’q’umi’num place names and origin stories of the Snuneymuxw First Nation.
Produced through a partnership between Snuneymuxw First Nation, Vancouver Island University, and New Society Publishers, this beautifully illustrated, full colour booklet gathers and shares the rich history of the Snuneymuxw’s living landscape as passed down through generations from time immemorial. From how Xw’ulhquyum (Snake Island) and other sites of significance got their names to ancient stories such as the bringing of fire by Qeyux to the Tle:ltxw people, the cultural history chronicled in these pages provides a unique lens through which to view and understand nearby lands and waters.
In addition to the sacred cultural narratives distilled from the teachings of the Ancestors, Snuneymuxw Mulstimuxw delves into more recent historical events, told from the perspective of those who experienced them firsthand or whose families are still experiencing the intergenerational effects. This invaluable work is complemented by a series of maps integrating traditional Hul’q’umi’num place names into their present day context.
The print book can be purchased through Strong Nations
Geraldine Manson, C’tasi:a is a respected Snuneymuxw Elder and Traditional Knowledge Keeper. She is a Vancouver Island University Elder-in-Residence, and has worked with the Gabriola Historical and Museum Society for over two decades as a knowledge holder and spiritual guide. She is the author of Snuneymuxw History Written in Places and Spaces.
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