Dialect: Yellowknife
Language: Hare-Chipewyan
Family: Athapaskan
Stock: Nuclear Na-Dene
Phylum: Na-Dene
Macro-Culture: Rocky Mountains
Speakers A As many as 70% of tribe    
      The Yellowknife were a nomadic hunter tribe of the sub-arctic. They were located on the northern shores and eastern bays of Great Slave Lake having been driven there in war by the Slavey from the Yellowknife River.. Their remote location minimized their contact with Whites. The tribe was known and named for manufacturing knives, axes, and other cutting tools from the ore of a local copper mine. Cheaper and more durable European tools ruined their market. The Cree were their enemies as were the other Inuits and other Athapaskan tribes of the region.
Aboriginal Location
AB among Chipewyan or NT
Present Locations
NT Yellowknife "B", Yellowknife
Year History
1670 Hudson Bay Company chartered
1697 The Cree, having guns received from traders, drove the Chipewyan north and east of their aboriginal territories
1717 Churchill post established
1718 Chipewyan were living on Peace River, but after Cree obtained guns and drove Slaveys tribe from Slave River, the Chipewyan drove off Cree and stayed on Slave River
1730 Approximate date Alberta Indians acquired horses and guns
1769 Visited by Hearne
1784 Smallpox epidemic killed 90% of Chipewyans and Yellowknife
1789 Visited by Mackenzie and Metis Francois Beaulieu II
1820 John Franklin visited tribe and met Chief Akaitcho
1827 Franklins second visit, Yellowknives and Dogribs at war
1835 Yellowknives defeated by the Slavey and driven from the rich area of the Yellowknife River to the barren hills about Great slave lake
1887 The Great Famine
1897 Indian Treaty No. 8 was signed by Alexander Laviolette for the Chipewyan
1920 Spanish Flu
1948 Measles epidemic
Year NT Population   Source
1670 430   Mooney estimate
1700 450   NAHDB calculation
1800 300   NAHDB calculation
1859 219   Census
1900 500   NAHDB calculation
1906 500   Official
2000 12,000   NAHDB calculation
2005 13,011   Indian Life Online
Other speakers of the same language:
Chipewyan, Dogrib, Hare, Mountain, Slavey
Yellowknife Tribe Sites:
Aboriginal History of Northern Canada
Chipewyan/Dene Language
Chipewyan Language
Chipewyan Language
Chipewyan Language
Chipewyan Language Plaque
Chipewyan Linguistic Lineage
Dene History
First Arctic Land Expedition ...
Fort Smith
François Beaulieu, Legend of the Great Slave Métis
Gold Mines Built Yellowknife
Maps of the Arctic Basin ...,+v.+36,+no.++2,+June+1983,*?COMMANDSEARCH
Slave River History
Traditional Tribes of Great Slave
Treaty No. 8
Treaty No. 8
Where Are the Real Yellowknives?
Wolf at the Door
Yellowknife Band
Yellowknife City
Yellowknife, NWT
Yellowknife, NWT
Yellowknife, NWT,_Northwest_Territories

Last updated 11/11/05  Copyright © 2005 by Four Directions Press