Marina Island

Feature Type:Island - Land area surrounded by water or marsh.
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: Off SW side of Cortes Island, at N end Strait of Georgia, Sayward Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 50°03'59"N, 125°03'04"W at the approximate centre of this feature.
Datum: WGS84
NTS Map: 92K/3

Other Recorded Names:

Mary Island

Origin Notes and History:

"Marina Island (not Mary Island)" adopted in the 6th Report of the Geographic Board of Canada, 30 June 1906. Confirmed 6 April 1950 on 92NW.

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

This island was named in 1792 by Spanish explorers Dionisio Alcalá-Galiano and Cayetano Valdés, in association with nearby Cortes Island. Hernán Cortés, Spanish conquistador, acquired Doña Marina (also known as La Malinche or Malintzin) as an Aztec slave and made her his mistress and interpreter. She supposedly bore him a son and played a powerful role in her people’s defeat, acting as an advisor to Cortes and an intermediary between vanquishers and vanquished. Marino remains an icon on both victimization and treachery in her own country’s culture to this day and serves as a conflicted symbolic mother figure to the people of colonial Mexico. Royal Navy surveyors changed Marina Island to Mary Island in 1849, then changed it back again in 1906. (Mary Island continued in use as a local name, though, for many years.) Marino Reef was formerly known as Boulder Reef. A Sliammon First Nation village – Shet-kay-jeh (Shítká’ji), which means “to tie a rope around a tree” – occupied the north end of Marina in the 19th century. A settler community formed in the early 1900s on the east side of the island, where a post office called Chamadaska operated. 1910-23. This word may be an adaption of an old First Nation name meaning “the island that stretches,” referring to the drying reeds at either end.

Source: Scott, Andrew; "The Encyclopedia of Raincoast Place Names"; Harbour Publishing, Madeira Park, 2009, pages 361-362.

Shítká ji, meaning "tie rope around tree", was the name of a large Sliammon village on Marina Island, occupied before 1900. The houses extended from the most northerly point of the island to the most easterly point. This village is said to be the site of a battle with the Lekwiltok Indians a long time ago. (from "Sliammon Life, Sliammon Lands" by Dorothy Kennedy & Randy Bouchard, BCILP; Talonbooks, Vancouver, 1983, p.161.) The preferred modern spelling is Shet kah jeh. (Sliammon Treaty Society, March 2004)

Source: included with note