History

The Haisla people have occupied lands for over 9000 years. For hundreds of years the Haisla people have occupied many village sites throughout their territory.

In 1918, an influenza pandemic dramatically reduced the Haisla population and wiped out the Wolf and Frog clans. The Haisla community recovered and continues to evolve. Today, there are about 1700 Haisla, half of which live in Kitamaat Village.

Though clan distinctions and connections remain today, Haisla culture combines traditional heritage with Canadian culture. The Na’Na’Kila Institute was established in 1998 to help protect and encourage development of Haisla culture, including language.

Na’Na’Kila helped bring about the repatriation of a Haisla totem pole that had been removed in 1929 and was missing for more than 60 years. It was discovered in the Museum of Ethnography in Stockholm in 1991 and, after years of negotiation, it was returned to Kitamaat on July 1, 2006. In exchange for it’s safe return, the Haisla carved a replica pole to gift to the museum in Stockholm.