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The Chilcotin War begins when European Canadians start constructing a roadway through Tsilhqot’in territory without establishing treaties with the locals. In retaliation for attacks on the road crew, five Tsilhqot’in leaders are controversially captured and tried for murder. Conflicted, Matthew Baillie Begbie ultimately sentences them to hanging deaths. Construction on the road never resumes.


It wasn’t right, it wasn’t wrong
Oh, the strength of the headstrong
Kept underfoot, a half decade long
Oh, the faith to prolong

Oh, we were deaf, we were blind to our crimes
Oh, we stood by while the peace took to slide
We will all die in our time
We will all hang for our crimes

Oh, how can I divine
In the dead of night, by my failing sight
For between us is a mountain range
Is an ocean wide, is an ocean

Over my dead hide, the river people taken by night
Over my dead mind, the river people betrayed in plain sight

Oh we’re walking on weak clay
All the people are dying from our malaise
The disease, the contempt and the rape
And the killing, the killing, the killing
How can anyone sufficedly pay?

In the woods we’ve wove inside
Beneath the lichen underside
Over the same rocks we all have climbed
Under our shared northern sky

I know it won’t save my soul
I know it won’t make anyone whole
Theirs is still a place I can never go
Theirs is still a people I can never truly know


from The West Beyond The West, released November 9, 2012



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Great Lonely Wild Vancouver, British Columbia

Original roots and folk music about the 19th Century Pacific Northwest.

The sounds of mandolin, banjo, concertina, violin, guitar and vocal harmonies will expose you to the tales and stories of those who came before us in Canada's West. ... more

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