How Squiala First Nation Was Formed
As of today, Squiala First Nation has 170 members. All members can be traced to Sam and Theresa Jimmie. Sam and Theresa were the founders of Squiala First Nation. Together, they had 7 sons and Squiala membership is made up of the descendents from the seven brothers. .
Jim Swevilis was born in 1870 to Charlie Laxelatsa of Squiala and Annie Artese from Tsawassen. Jim married Annie Charles of Whiterock and had 6 children: Annie, Alex, Louisa, Daniel, Martha and Simeon (Samuel). Simeon (Sam) married Theresa James from Skwah Reserve around 1928. They had seven sons; Alexander – 1929, Wilfred – 1932, Samuel – 1932, Charles – 1933, Gordon – 1935, Lawrence – 1938 and Leonard – 1940.
Squiala First Nation Office
The current office for Squiala First Nation was the idea of Theresa Jimmie in 1974. Theresa’s original plan for the building was for it to be a tea house with aboriginal people working on crafts such as Salish weaving, basket making, carving, knitting and beading. Her dream was to use the building as a place to display crafts for sale and provide tourists with the opportunity to see the skills of our First Nations people.
The office is a log building and Theresa’s son Larry felled the trees from Charlie Chung’s timer claim. Charlie then transported the logs to the site for construction. Community members and relatives then skinned the logs to prepare them for use. Theresa then wrote a proposal to Human Resources Development and a contractor was hired who trained some of the community members in log building. In 2002 the building was renovated to repair water damages and to also add on 2 new offices and a larger bathroom.
Squiala is currently building a new community hall that will feature a gymnasium, elders lounge, computer lab, classroom, commercial kitchen, office space and boardrooms. The community hall is scheduled for completion in February, 2012.
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