Muchalaht

Muchalaht/Mowachaht and other Aboriginal communities merged as part of the Nuu-chah-nulth First Nation. The Muchalaht are a NOOTKA (Nuu-Chah-Nulth) First Nation on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Their traditional territories include Muchalat Inlet and the Gold River valley. Their main villages were Cheeshish and Ahaminaquus. The Muchalaht, unlike most Nootka, did not have access to the outer coast, and adapted to riverine and inland environments. Rich salmon streams, elk and deer were important for subsistence. After decimation by prolonged warfare they merged with the MOWACHAHT in the 19th century. In the early 20th century, a Muchalaht man inherited the Maquinna title of first chief of the Mowachaht, and the remaining Muchalaht moved to the Mowachaht village of Yuquot. In the 1950s the Muchalaht Band formally amalgamated with the Mowachaht (then Nootka) Band. The combined population of the two bands in 2001 was less than 180 people.