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Lyackson
The Lyackson have historically lived on Valdes Island. Today, due to difficult access and the lack of infrastructure, the Lyackson villages on Valdes Island are unoccupied and members of the Lyackson First Nation are seeking land to establish a community.

According to information collected by Rozen, the Lyackson once had three permanent winter villages, all on the southwest coast of Valdes Island and another — named t'aat'ka7 — at the mouth of the Cowichan River on Vancouver Island. The Shingle Point site has long been inhabited by Hul'qumi'num peoples, and is now the location of a 32-hectare reserve (Shingle Point No. 4). The Hul'qumi'num name for Shingle Point is laay'ksen, meaning 'Douglas-fir Point', and this name is used to refer generally to members of the Lyackson First Nation. The name of the village here is t'aat'ka7, meaning 'place with many salal berries.' Historically, this was the largest Lyackson village — it was also the second largest (most populous) Hul'qumi'num village on the Gulf Islands (after Penelakut Spit on Kuper Island) — and there were perhaps 10 large houses here at one time (Rozen 1985, 74-79).

There was also a small permanent village (th'xwémksen) located just east of Cayetano Point on the southwest coast of Valdes Island (to the south of Shingle Point). Rozen interviewed Agnes Thorne, who reported that she had been born and had spent her early childhood at this village. She reported that there were only two or three houses remaining there by 1915, but that there may have been five large houses in the area between Cayetano Point and Vernaci Point (i.e., the southern coast of Valdes Island) at one point, with a total population of 100 or 150 people (Rozen 1985, 69-70). This village was abandoned around 1915 and residents moved elsewhere, including to the Shingle Point Reserve, Kuper Island, and various places on Vancouver Island (Rozen 1985, 70-71). Currently there is a small (2 hectare) reserve at this spot (Porlier Pass No. 5).

There was also a permanent winter village at Cardale Point on the southwest coast of Valdes Island (situated between Shingle Point and Cayetano Point). Again, according to Agnes Thorne (whose father was born there), this village once had about five or six large houses, with a total population of approximately 150 people. The Hul'qumi'num name for this place is th'axel (meaning 'gravelly place'). This site had an abundance of marine life, including seals and sea lions (Rozen 1985, 72-73). There is no reserve at this site and there are no Lyackson people living here, though the Porlier Pass area is still significant for harvesting marine resources.


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