BC Geographical Names

Name Details:

Name: Sikanni Chief 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 NE then N, joining with Fontas 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°17'02''N, 121°45'03''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.:
94G/16 94G/2 94G/3 94G/4
94G/6 94G/7 94G/8 94G/9
94H/13 94I/4 94I/5
  Nearby names within
  

Origin Notes and History:

"Sikanni Chief River (not Sicannie Chief River) adopted in the 5th Report of the Geographic Board of Canada, 30 June 1904.
Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office
Named by Water Moberly, who met the Sikanni Indians at this river. Labelled "Sicannie Chief River" on Jorgensen's 1895 map of BC; elsewhere spelled variously: Sikainni Chief, Sikinni Chief, etc. Sikanni means "dwellers on the rocks." (c1917 notation on BC name card).
Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office
"... 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
An adaption of Tse-Kehne, meaning "people on the rocks" referring to the Rocky Mountains.
Source: Morice, Rev. A.G; Fifty years in western Canada; Toronto, 1930
"Named for a Beaver Indian 'dreamer' or 'prophet', Makenunatane, known to the white men as the Sikanni Chief." elsewhere....."According to Father Morice, the forebears of the Sikanni people originally lived on the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains but were gradually forced westward into the recesses of the Rockies by their enemies, the Beaver Indians, who had acquired firearms from the fur traders. Their name, Sikanni, means 'people on the rocks' - that is, the Rocky Mountains."
Source: Akrigg, Helen B. and Akrigg, G.P.V; British Columbia Place Names; Sono Nis Press, Victoria 1986 /or University of British Columbia Press 1997