Matsqui

Feature Type:Urban Community - A separately named area within the limits of an incorporated municipality
Status:
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: In Abbotsford (City), New Westminster Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 49°06'30''N, 122°17'30''W at the approximate population centre of this feature.
Datum: NAD27
NTS Map: 92G/1

Origin Notes and History:

Matsqui (Post Office and Railway Station) adopted 12 December 1939. Form of name changed to Matsqui (Urban Community) 18 September 1995 on 92 G/1.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

Named after a tribe of the Halkomaylem division, of the Cowichan group of the Salish stock, dwelling on the lower Fraser River and Sumas Lake. There were two villages: Ma'mak'ume on the south side of the Fraser opposite to the Matsqui reserve, and Kokoae'uk, situated on the south-west point of Sumas Lake near to the Fraser River. Population was 40 in 1911. The Matsqui Village map was deposited 26 September 1904 by John Maclure. "The name Matsqui is still pronounced by the few remaining Indians "Mats-whey". My father was the first white settler on Matsqui prairie in 1867 at a point called by the Indians "Saw-aqum" meaning "wild celery" which grew there. Later he called it Hazel Brae which sounded better in our ears and there were hazel nuts on the hill. Thomas Yorke was the first to come to Sumas, and our first and nearest neighbour, 1869-70." (4 July 1924 letter from J.C. Maclure to Nelson).

Source: Nelson, Denys; Place Names of the Delta of the Fraser River; 1927, unpublished manuscript held in the Provincial Archives

Ma'cQui. (See: "Indian Tribes of the Lower Fraser River" by Franz Boaz, published in the 64th Report of the British Association for the Advancement of Science for 1890, pp 454-463.)

Source: included with note