What was the official name for Łutselk’e? Which town used to be called Rae-Edzo?
Ever since the pioneering Arctic explorer Martin Frobisher landed on what he dubbed The Countess of Warwick’s Island 430 years ago, Europeans have littered Canada’s North with ill-fitting toponyms. And for just as long, Aboriginals have reclaimed those names: Inuit immediately called Frobisher’s isle Kodlunarn, or white man’s, island – an immensely more sensible designation, and, today, its official name.
In a similar spirit, during the past half-century numerous communities in the Northwest Territories have shrugged off their Western place-names in favour of traditional monikers. Some have then gone a step further, re-changing the spelling to make it phonetically correct. For instance, the NWT community of Snare Lake became Wekweti in 1998, then, in 2005, Wekweètı̀, to capture the Dene pronunciation: weh-kway-tea.
Think you know what’s what? Match the old and new to find out.
1. Tuktoyaktuk (1950) a. Fort Norman
2. Łutselk’e (1992)b. Rae Lakes
3. Délı̨ne (1993) c. Rae-Edzo
4. Tsiigehtchic (1994)d. Port Brabant
5. Wha Ti (1996)/Whatı̀ (2005)e. Snare Lake
6. Tulit’a (1996) f. Snowdrift
7. Wekweti (1998)/Wekweètı̀ (2005)g. Holman Island
8. Behchokǫ̀ (2005) h. Fort Franklin
9. Gamètı̀ (2005) i. Lac la Martre
10. Ulukhaktok (2006) j. Arctic Red River
Keen to learn more? Discover Aboriginal culture in the Northwest Territories.
1d, 2f, 3h, 4j, 5i, 6a, 7e, 8c, 9b, 10g