BC Geographical Names

Name Details:

Name: Haida Gwaii
Feature TypeClick here for a list of
Feature Types.
:
Islands - Plural of Island
StatusClick here for an explanation of Status.: Official
Pronounced: hy-dah gWHY
Relative Location: Off NW coast of British Columbia, separated from mainland BC by Hecate Strait, Queen Charlotte Land District
Latitude-LongitudeClick here for an explanation of Position Type.: 53°15'00''N, 132°15'00''W at the approximate centre of this feature.
DatumClick here for an explanation of Datum.: NAD83
NTS MapClick here for an explanation of NTS Map.: 103F/1
Related MapClick here for an explanation of Related Maps.:
102O/14 103B/2 103B/3 103C/16
103C/9 103F/1 103F/10 103F/11
103F/14 103F/15 103F/16 103F/2
103F/7 103F/8 103F/9 103G/12
103G/13 103G/4 103G/5 103J/4
103K/1 103K/2 103K/3 103K/6
  Nearby names within
  

Origin Notes and History:

"Queen Charlotte Islands" adopted 15 October 1920 on Ottawa file OBF 0557, as identified on charts from 1790 onward. "Queen Charlotte Islands" and the approved French form "Îles de la Reine-Charlotte" identified as names of pan-Canadian significance per Treasury Board Circular 1983-58, 23 November 1983. Re-named Haida Gwaii per Bill 18: Haida Gwaii Reconciliation Act, which legislation received Royal Assent 3 June 2010.
Source: BC place name cards, files, correspondence and/or research by BC Chief Geographer/Geographical Names Office.
Xhaaidlagha Gwaayaai is the oldest name, pronounced hy-dah-gah gWHY-eye. The name means "Islands at the Boundary of the World" The spelling is presented as X̱AAYDAG̱A GWAAY.YAAY on the First Peoples Language Map of British Columbia. In the early 1970's the name was restyled as Haida Gwaii ("Islands of the People") by the Haida people.
Source: BC place name cards, files, correspondence and/or research by BC Chief Geographer/Geographical Names Office.
"The natives of the Queen Charlotte Islands were known as Haidas, which means in their language 'people' - this word is pronounced hada-i by the natives of Masset, and by the Skidegates haidai-gai."
Source: Walbran, John T; British Columbia Coast Names, 1592-1906: their origin and history; Ottawa, 1909 (republished for the Vancouver Public Library by J.J. Douglas Ltd, Vancouver, 1971)