Sq’éwlets: A Stó:lō -Coast Salish Community in the Fraser River Valley is both an exhibition and a significant online project that results from a major interdisciplinary, cross-cultural collaboration.
Both the exhibition and the website were developed by Sq’éwlets community members in partnership with collaborators from several disciplines. These projects introduce visitors to an in-depth perspective of what it means to be a Sq’éwlets person and community member today. Both platforms prominently feature the Halq’eméylem language and share Sq’éwlets’ views on self-representation and ownership of cultural heritage.
The project stems from a collaborative relationship formed 25 years ago between Chief Clarence Pennier of Sq’éwlets, Archaeology Professor Michael Blake of UBC, and researchers at Stó:lō Nation. A partnership was formed in 1992 to excavate, examine, understand, and protect the ancestral archaeological resources at one of the Sq’éwlets community’s primary ancestral sites, Qithyil. The Sq’éwlets community has played a central role in collaborative community-based archaeology in BC, and has translated this knowledge into an accessible exhibition and website that address many of the recommendations outlined in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The exhibition is based on the website and was developed by Kate Hennessy, David M. Schaepe, Aynur Kadir, Natasha Lyons, and Colin Pennier with the Sq’ewlets Advisory Group. The website was achieved with funding from the Virtual Museum of Canada’s Virtual Exhibits investment program.
VISIT the website
This initiative is made possible by the Community Fund for Canada’s 150th, a collaboration between Abbotsford Community Foundation, the City of Abbotsford, the Government of Canada, and extraordinary leaders from coast to coast to coast.