SEPTEMBER 20, 2014


The Heiltsuk and Haida Nations historically had experienced territorial hostilities with the last conflict occurring in 1852, according to oral history. Following a potlatch a few years later near McLoughlin Bay, however, the nations entered into an oral peace treaty in response to an influx of European explorers changing the nature of their relationship. The Nations worked closely together over recent years opposing the Northern Gateway pipeline and, most recently, commercial herring fishing in Heiltsuk waters.  On this date, the Nations initially signed an historic peace treaty at a potlatch in Massett, Haida Gwaii, hosted by Haida Nation chiefs. On June 15, 2015, the Heiltsuk Nation hosted its own potlatch in Bella Bella, where chiefs from the two Nations finalized the treaty document.  The agreement is being coined a “treaty of peace, respect, and responsibility.”

Source:  Ryan Erwin, “Heiltsuk and Haida nations finalize peace treaty,” The Global News, 6/30/2015.  Retrieved 7/13/2019,
Photo:  The Interior, 6/13/2013.  Bella Bella, British Columbia.  Permissive Use.

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