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Subjects: NTA, CFG

Tr'ondk-Klondike inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List

This serial property comprised of eight distinct heritage locations is a living record of a period of profound change and upheaval for Tr'ondk Hwch'in with the onset of colonial expansion

GATINEAU, QC, Sept. 18, 2023 /CNW/ - During yesterday's proceedings at the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tr'ondk-Klondike, located in the homeland of Tr'ondk Hwch'inin northwestern Canada, was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Led by the Tr'ondk Hwch'in Government and the Tr'ondk-Klondike World Heritage Site Advisory Committee, with support from the Government of Yukon, the City of Dawson, the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor), and Parks Canada, Tr'ondk-Klondike tells the story of Tr'ondk Hwch'in's experiences and responses to the startlingly rapid expansion of colonialism in their homeland between 1874 and 1908. Archaeological and historical evidence denotes timelines of both Indigenous and settler occupation of important sites throughout the region and together are a comprehensive record of the events that transformed the Tr'ondk Hwch'in way of life.

Tr'ondk-Klondike World Heritage site is a serial property comprised of eight distinct heritage locations: Fort Reliance; Ch'dhdk (Forty Mile); Ch'dhdk Tth'n K'et (Dnezhu Graveyard); Fort Cudahy and Fort Constantine; Tr'ochk; Dawson City; Jjik Dh Dnezhu Kek'it (Moosehide Village); and Jjik Dh Tthe Zra'y Kek'it (Black City). These sites collectively total 334 hectares of land and encompass component sites along parts of the Yukon River and the Blackstone River.

The unique cultural makeup of the region is the product of the coexistence of Tr'ondk Hwch'in and settlers over the last century and a half. The Tr'ondk Hwch'in experience and adaptation to European settler colonialism marked the landscape with distinct cultural heritage attributes that remain to this day.

With this inscription, Tr'ondk-Klondike joins the expanding list of World Heritage sites in Canada which includes awe-inspiring locations such as Nahanni National Park, Wood Buffalo National Park, Gros Morne National Park, the Historic District of Old Qubec, and the Rideau Canal.


"It's been over a decade since Tr'ondk Hwch'intook on the administration of the Tr'ondk-Klondike World Heritage project and we're happy to receive this news. Tr'ondk-Klondike provides us with another opportunity to tell our story ? the story of Tr'ondk Hwch'inand our continual stewardship of this land since time immemorial. In this nomination we honour our ancestors who stewarded the land before us, and we look to the future, with the knowledge that these special places will be respected by generations to come."

Hhke? Darren Taylor
Chief of Tr'ondk Hwch'in

"Tr'ondk-Klondike is an example of a landscape irrevocably and rapidly changed by colonial expansion in the Yukon. It is only with deep reflection that the impacts that colonial expansion had on the lands, waters and Tr'ondk Hwch'in can be understood. The inscription of Tr'ondk-Klondike to the World Heritage List is a momentous occasion and the result of many years of dedication from everyone involved. Congratulations to the Tr'ondk-Klondike World Heritage Site Advisory Committee and everyone involved in this inscription!"

The Honourable Steven Guilbeault
Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

"My first thought with this inscription, was to remember all the people who contributed, the people who worked so tirelessly to tell the story, to share the story, making sure our history would not continue to be overshadowed by the gold rush narrative. Many of these important contributors are no longer with us. With this inscription, we honourall the elders, staff, and community members who contributed knowledge, time, and enthusiasm to this project. The inscription of Tr'ondk-Klondike as a World Heritage site confirms what we have always known ? that this land is very sacred to us, and it tells a story relevant to the world. The ongoing challenge of colonialism is a system of oppression that has affected many Indigenous peoples, it is important that we are talking about this, and people are learning. Visitors to our lands will benefit from this knowledge."

Debbie Nagano
Director of Heritage for Tr'ondk Hwch'in and Co-Chair of the Tr'ondk-Klondike World Heritage Site (TKWHS) Advisory Committee

"I am proud to see Tr'ondk-Klondike officially inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage site thanks to years of hard work by Tr'ondk Hwch'in. By investing in important work such as this, our government is supporting First Nations in sharing their stories with more Canadians and with people across the world."

The Honourable Dan Vandal
Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister responsible for PrairiesCan and CanNor

"Congratulations to Tr'ondk Hwch'inand to each and every individual who contributed to the inscription of Tr'ondk-Klondike as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The story told through Tr'ondk-Klondike at last provides crucial and often harrowing perspective long missing from the established narrative of the Klondike Gold Rush. The Government of Yukon is proud to have been a partner in this important achievement."

John Streicker
Minister of Tourism and Culture, Government of Yukon

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SOURCE Parks Canada

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