Monthly Archives: December 2013

Restoring a sense of place

The late elder Bill Arnouse on a field trip to Momich Lake in the mid-1990s

Chief Atahm School on the Adams Lake Indian Band reserve north of Chase, which is B.C.’s oldest aboriginal immersion school, has undertaken an ambitious project to determine most of this region’s original place names. School principal, Robert Matthew, believes strongly that “the only thing that makes us special is our language and our land.” Consequently, one of the school’s key goals is for its students to develop a strong personal identity that includes first-hand knowledge of the land and its place names.
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This Shuswap town was once a French enclave

             Rams Horn Hotel, circa 1873, photo by C.W. Holliday courtesy                                   of  Okanagan Archive Trust Society

Although the Lumby area is most often considered to be part of the North Okanagan, it is actually in the Shuswap watershed, as Bessette Creek flows through the town before it enters the Shuswap River. The first settlers came from Quebec in the 1870s and named the area White Valley after George LeBlanc who built a four-room cabin in 1874. The first one to pre-empt land was Mr. Bessette, who arrived via the Okanagan Brigade Trail before 1874.
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Cluster Fun Jam