Ksan | The Canadian Encyclopedia



Ksan (or ‘Ksan) is a historical village, museum and campground, owned and operated by the Gitanmaax Band. It is located at the junction of the Skeena and Bulkley rivers in Hazelton, British Columbia. Ksan was established in 1970 as way to promote and preserve Gitxsan culture and history.

Ksan Village


In 1958, the Hazelton Library Association raised $10,000 and constructed the Skeena Treasure House, a precursor to Ksan. The Skeena Treasure House exhibited ceremonial regalia on loan from many Gitxsan chiefs in the area.

Following the decision of the volunteer planning committee to build a replica of a Gitxsan village of the early 1800s, construction began in 1968, with the combined financial help of the ‘Ksan Association and the provincial and federal governments. Ksan officially opened on 12 August 1970.

Did You Know?
Ksan is the Gitxsan name for the Skeena River, meaning “River of Mists.” (See also Indigenous Names of Rivers and Lakes in Canada and Indigenous Languages in Canada.)

Ksan Today

The Ksan historical village features traditional Gitxsan buildings, modelled on communal houses with painted fronts. (See also Architectural History of Indigenous Peoples in Canada.) Daily tours help guide visitors through the site, describing pre-colonial ways of life.

Ksan also includes a museum with 600 artifacts, ranging from ceremonial to everyday items, and a gift shop for the sale of souvenirs. An on-site campground provides visitors who wish to extend their stay with a place to enjoy and explore the outdoors.