In 1864, the Tsilhqot’in killed 17 settlers over artificial smallpox epidemics. Advertising a peace conference, B.C. ambushed the Tsilhqot’in delegates and hanged five.
The Premier’s exoneration statement is republished here to assist in keeping this expression of sorrow current and in making it more widely available.
Poole arrived in the Nuxalk Ancestors’ territory in the first week of June 1862. On his own various accounts of where his party bore responsibility, or from the newspapers, smallpox carriers from his party knowingly left the disease at: Nanaimo, Fort Rupert (north Vancouver Island), a Heiltsuk community on the approach to Bella Coola, “tribes in the neighbourhood” of Bentinck Arm, South Bentinck Arm, Q’umk’uts’ and Soonochlim (collectively known as Bella Coola, population estimated by Poole at 4000), Nautlieff and Chilcotin Lake.