Candace + Ashley

This photoshoot is especially dear to us as we were invited to the unceded traditional territory of the K'omoks First Nation by Candace & Ashley, sisters, and members of the KFN.


Please enjoy this short teaching on the K'omoks First Nation by Ashley Wright


Candace and Ashley standing at the base of totem pole on K'omoks First Nation

K’omoks is unique in that they are located at the boundary of two different cultures and language groups: the Coast Salish and the Kwakwaka’wakw. The language spoken by the K’ómoks (Island Comox dialect of Comox, or Éy7á7juuthem) and the Pentlatch (Pentlatch) belongs to the Coast Salish language family. Many of the cultural practices and traditions of both the K’ómoks and the Pentlatch peoples were closely related to those of the Kwakwaka’wakw, while other practices were clearly Coast Salish in origin.Much of traditional K’ómoks and Pentlatch culture was a blend of both Coast Salish and Kwakwaka’wakw traditions. As in the past, through inter-marriage some K’ómoks people now speak and practice the Kwakwaka’wakw language and traditions, while some K’ómoks people practice the Coast Salish traditions.

The modern KFN has inherited these territories from the K’ómoks tribes (Sathloot, Sasitla, Eiksan), the Pentlatch (or Puntledge), and the Hahamatsees (or Salmon River people). Ancestral village sites of the tribes that comprise the modern K’ómoks First Nations are located around Discovery Passage, Quadra Island, Comox Harbour, Denman Island, and elsewhere. From these settlements, KFN ancestors travelled the breadth of our territory, harvesting resources as they became seasonally abundant. Archaeological evidence, as outlined below, indicates that our ancestors have occupied this territory for more than 12,000 years, and lived in dozens of large villages here for at least the last 3000 years.

 

Ashley and Candace are from the Sasitla tribe who come from the Salmon River area. They grew up singing, dancing, and celebrating their unique K’ómoks culture. They are proud K’ómoks women and hope to carry on their culture and traditions for generations to come.

Photos by Paige Owen Photo

 

You can follow Candace and Ashley here