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Lower Similkameen First Nation

The population has been estimated to be between 800 – 1000 people who had a good water supply, had good look-out points, and was easily defended. Non-Natives in the Similkameen included the Hudson’s Bay Trading Company, various Missionaries, and Gold Rush prospectors.

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The population of this encampment has been estimated to be between 800 – 1000 people. This encampment had a good water supply, had good look-out points, and was easily defended. There was another encampment located nearby, at what is now the Rocking Chair Ranch. This encampment had an estimated 500 people living there. They had a fresh-water spring, that provided an excellent source of water. Also at this location, was a plentiful supply of reeds and tulies.

Before and upon Contact with Non-Natives, the Dwellings that the Similkameen people stayed in consisted of Pit Houses, Tulie Shelters, Ntamlken Lodges, and Winter Kickwillies. Pit Houses were made of wood and hemp. Tulie Shelters were made of reeds, wood and hemp. Ntamlken Lodges were made with reeds, wood and hemp rope. Summer Lodges were made of poles and fir boughs. Winter Kickwillies were made of poles, grass, bark, tulies, and skins of animals.
The coming of Non-Natives to the Similkameen can be mainly attributed to the expansion of the Hudson’s Bay Trading Company, not to mention Missionaries that were sent to live amongst the native population. Sometime after this, more Non-Natives settled in the Similkameen area during the Gold Rush.