BC Geographical Names

Name Details:

Name: Fontas River
Feature TypeClick here for a list of
Feature Types.
:
River - Watercourse of variable size, which has tributaries and flows into a body of water or a larger watercourse
StatusClick here for an explanation of Status.: Official
Relative Location: Flows NW across BC-Alberta boundary then W, joining with Sikanni Chief River to become the Fort Nelson River, SE of Fort Nelson, Peace River Land District
Latitude-LongitudeClick here for an explanation of Position Type.: 58°17'03''N, 121°44'55''W at the approximate mouth of this feature.
DatumClick here for an explanation of Datum.: NAD83
NTS MapClick here for an explanation of NTS Map.: 94I/5
Related MapClick here for an explanation of Related Maps.: 94I/16
94I/5
94I/6
94I/7
94I/8
  Nearby names within
  

Origin Notes and History:

Adoped 27 December 1944 on 94/NE, as identified in 1914 surveyor's reports, and as labelled on BC Lands' map 1H, 1917.
Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office
Labelled East Branch Nelson River on Jorgensen's 1895 map of BC. Fontas is spelled "Fantasque" on other early maps or documents (titles/dates not cited)
Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office
"The only name which the Indians recognize. The custom apparently is for a separate band of the Sikanni Indians to hunt on [one and only one] of these rivers, and the rivers receive the names of the leaders in each band.....thus Musquah's River, Prophet's River, Sikanni Chief's River and Fantasque's River." (from report of Maj. E.B. Hart, who participated in 1912 Department of Lands' survey of the Liard River.) [notation on BC card indicates that Hart's report was published in 1913-14, with above-text relayed in a letter received 3 January 1914, file 6952-S]
Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office
"Fontas River...drains a large extent of country, roughly 3600 square miles. Its water, mainly derived from surface water and swamps, is dark in colour, and at its mouth forms a deep contrast to the white silty water of the Sikanni Chief.... The Fort Nelson River is formed by the junction of the Sikanni Chief and Fontas Rivers, at which point it is from 400 to 500 feet wide...." (extracts from the report of G.B. Milligan, surveyor, 14 December 1914)
Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office
Headwaters in Alta. at approx. 57 45-119 46 on 84 E/13. (A.B.17/01/89)
Source: Canadian Geographical Names Database, Ottawa