Prince Rupert, British Columbia and cruising

Sep 09, 2017 - National Geographic Quest

After crossing Dixon Entrance during the late hours of the evening, National Geographic Quest entered British Columbia making her way to the port of Prince Rupert. Our morning destination would include clearing Canadian customs and spending our morning in Prince Rupert at the Museum of Northern British Columbia.

Na Xbiisa Lagigyet, means “Treasure Box of the Ancient Ones” in the language of our hosts the Tsimshian people. The museum stands on the traditional lands of this First Nations group and these indigenous words also refer to the knowledge and wisdom of the old people, who continue to pass this way of life to the younger generation. As seafarers, warriors and artisans, led by highly trained chiefs and matriarchs, the Tsimshian people have carried forward a complex interwoven culture reflecting their history. The younger generation like our host Marric have spent years learning these traditions which are generously shared with visitors like ourselves.

There is a strong balance between the modern world and ancient world of First Nations society which remains vibrant today. Through a sophisticated interweaving of oral history, totem poles, regalia, songs, dances and feasts First Nations have kept their history and culture alive for thousands of years.

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About the Author

Sharon Grainger

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Sharon’s degrees in Psychology and Anthropology from Eastern Washington University have given her a good base to pursue her profession as a naturalist and photographer. With five generations of artists behind her, she has developed a portfolio of images covering many interests including indigenous cultures, ethnobotany, natural and cultural history. Photography gives voice and interpretation to her experience of the world. Spending many years with Native peoples has dramatically affected her attitude towards how and what she sees. She recognized, through these experiences, the diversity of peoples around the world. This began a lifelong curiosity about the variety of ways in which different cultures relate to each other and this planet.

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