Wednesday Word of the Week: Tla’amin

Tla’amin (TLAH-ah-mihn) [Human Geography]
noun. people and culture native to the coast of southwestern Canada.

Tla’amin people say they have lived in British Columbia, Canada, “from time immemorial.” According to their traditions, they have always lived on the land and used its resources. Their place along the northwest coast has made the marine environment an especially important part of their culture. In the late 1800s, however, laws against using fish traps prevented them from fishing in traditional ways. Later developments took away many of the places where they caught fish and gathered clams.

2011-07-26_0000233.JPGToday, the Tla’amin are working to regain access to their traditional resources and harvesting locations. They also are turning to traditional knowledge to learn how to manage their marine environment. One way they are doing this is by asking their elders how Tla’amin people used marine resources in the past. Another way is by teaming up with archaeologists, who can unearth artifacts to supplement the elders’ knowledge. This information provides insight into how the Tla’amin traditionally managed and used the once-abundant marine resources of the region. (National Geographic Education)

2011-11-20_1246761.JPGTo read more about the Tla’amin people of southwestern Canada, check out the Fishing for Answers. For even further exploration and information, refer to the Tla’amin and Simon Fraser University Archeology and Heritage Project. Also, continue to enjoy the celebrations of  Native American Heritage Month with special resources from Thinkfinity!   

Photo Credits: Your Shot, Warren Stowell & Karen Cooper
–Julia from My Wonderful World

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