Walk the streets of Dawson City and you’ll meet our citizens whose contemporary lifeways are proudly rooted in our heritage. Our citizens continue to follow the timeless traditions of hunting and gathering on the land and teaching our youth valuable subsistence skills and cultural practices. Our homes are built by our progressive housing program. We are engaged in every aspect of community education and well-being.
We have lived around the big rivers of the Yukon interior for thousands of years. Our culture was strong and vibrant and we thrived and survived on our own terms. Newcomers trickled into our lands gradually in the 1800s, then in a massive wave as thirty thousand stampeders arrived in 1897–98.
Our esteemed Chief Isaac lessened the negative impacts of the newcomers by moving our families downriver to Moosehide Village and safeguarding the Hän songs with Alaskan relatives. For the next one hundred years our people and resources suffered many great hardships.
We have worked hard to re-establish a healthy equilibrium and a new economic base for our community. Fittingly, our land claims treaty forged a new way for us in 1998, exactly a century after the gold rush.
Today, Moosehide is our home away from home and our connection to this place remains strong. We gather at Moosehide every second summer to celebrate our culture, rejuvenate our language and replenish our spirits. We welcome visitors to join us for feasts, stories, dancing and drumming in the spirit of friendship and reciprocity.
My name is Angie Joseph–Rear. My parents are Joe and Sthose who travel these lands with us. We share usan Joseph and I grew up at Moosehide Village and in Dawson City. I am a beader and a hunter, a mother and a former Chief, a Hän speaker in training and a residential school survivor. I have worked for Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in, my Nation, all my life. We have a long history of welcoming people into our territory. It is Tr’ëhudè – our traditional law – to care for our skills and knowledge, learn from each other – that is how we move forward and maintain good relationships.Elder Angie Joseph-Rear
Yukon First Nations Culture and Tourism Association
1-1109 Front Street (White Pass Building)
Whitehorse, Yukon Y1A-5G4