Stewart, British Columbia

Stewart, British Columbia

Stewart, British Columbia

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Stewart is a small town, incorporated as a district municipality at the head of the Portland Canal in northwestern British Columbia, Canada. In 2006, its population was about 496.


The Nisga'a, who lived around the Nass River, called the head of Portland Canal Skam-A-Kounst, meaning "safe house" or "strong house", probably because it served them as a retreat from the harassment of the Haida and Tlingit from the outer coast. They travelled in the area seasonally to pick berries and hunt birds. It and the rest of the Portland Canal had been the domain of the Tsetsaut people, also called the Skam-a-Kounst Indians, or Jits'aawit in Nisga'a, an Athapaskan people who became decimated by war and disease and were driven out of the Stewart area by either Haida or Nisga'a in 1856-57. Their remaining population was taken under the protection of the Eagle/Laxsgiiks chief Sim'oogit Sganisim Sim'oogit ("Mountain Chief") in the late 1800s. The former Scamakounst Indian Reserve 19, now named Sgamagunt as a result of the Nisga'a Treaty, is located on the east bank of the Bear River adjacent to the town of Stewart.<!--or in it?--> and is under the jurisdiction of the Kincolith group of the...
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