Nahane Tribe

Nahane Indians, Nahane People, Nahane First Nation (‘people of the west.’). An Athapascan division occupying the region of British Columbia and Yukon Territory between the Coast range and the Rocky mountains, from the north border of the Sekani, about 57° north, to that of the Kutchin tribes, about 65° north. It comprises the Tahltan and Takutine tribes forming the Taliltan division, the Titshotina and Etagottine tribes forming the Kaska division, and the Esbataottine and Abbatotine (considered by Petitot to be the same tribe), Sazeutina, Ettchaottine, Etagottine, Kraylongottine, Klokegottine, and perhaps Lakuyip and Tsetsant. They correspond with Petitot’s Montagnard group, except that he included also the Sekani. The language of the Nahane however constitutes a dialect by itself, entirely distinct from Sekani, Carrier, or Kutchin. The western divisions have been powerfully influenced by their Tlingit neighbors of Wrangell, and have adopted their clan organization with maternal descent, the potlatch customs of the coast tribes, and many words and expressions of their language. The two principal social divisions or phratries are called Raven and Wolf, and the fact that Sazeutina and Titshotina seem to signify ‘Bear people’ and ‘Grouse people’ respectively, leads Morice to suspect that these groups are really phratries or clans. The eastern Nahane have a loose paternal organization like the Sekani and other Athapascan tribes farther east. According to Morice the Nahane have suffered very heavily as a result of white contact. He estimates the entire population at about 1,000.


Hodge, Frederick Webb, Compiler. The Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Bureau of American Ethnology, Government Printing Office. 1906.

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