The Snuneymuxw community is again learning the teachings of the Elders as they share their culture and discuss bringing home the objects of their ancestors.
The strength of the Snuneymuxw was once challenged
by people who tried to convince them to turn their backs on their culture. Many of their masks, spindle whorls and the very posts of their houses were moved to museums in Europe, the United States and Canada.
The traditional language of the Snuneymuxw is Island Hul’q’umin’um’.
Their language is a link to the knowledge of their ancestors and Elders. They are teaching their children to speak their own language so that they will understand the strength that is within their community.
The Snuneymuxw are proud to be unique.
They can look to the accomplishments of the teachers, writers, scholars, parents, athletes and artists in their Community Stories. Those who hold the traditional knowledge can explain the complex meaning and the skill required to weave the baskets, carve the house posts and to craft the tools used by their ancestors.
The Snuneymuxw and their ancient ancestors
created the tools needed to gather and hunt for food; the blankets needed for warmth, wealth and ceremony; and the masks they awaken to share their stories. They once made all the tools needed to build their houses and canoes.
– the river, the estuary, the harbour, the islands and the ocean – is the basis of their traditions and the source of the inspiration and the materials for the arts of the Snuneymuxw community.