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Government from Afar


The Canadian government was slow to take responsibility for this remote area of the country until it became apparent that many of the newcomers were staying on after the initial rush.  While the federal and territorial governments failed to formally recognize our ancestors, many of their actions affected our lives in profound ways.


New regulations limited access to traditional hunting, fishing and trapping grounds and regularly put a closed season on certain animals. We were cut off from our Alaskan family members by the creation of the international boundary.  In 1914, Reverend John Hawksley became the Yukon’s first Indian Agent in 1914. He had no real mandate as there were no treaties with the Yukon First Nations. The federal government worked with the churches to impose disastrous educational policies on our people. We were forced to compete for jobs and resources in an economic, social and political system that discriminated against us. 

The Territorial Administration Building, seat of the government in the Yukon. 

University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections

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