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Nunavut Territory

Total Population of Nunavut: 28,000 

Inuit Population of Nunavut: 24,000 

Land Mass: 1,900,000 square km

Population per square kilometer: 0.01

Languages spoken: Inuktitut, Inuinnaqtun, English, French


Nunavut Flag -- click here to draw

When the Northwest Territories (NWT) was formed in 1870, it made up about two-thirds of Canada. The Provinces of Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan as well as the Yukon Territories were all created from its land.  The remaining region was cut roughly in half leaving the Northwest Territories and forming Nunavut out of NWT's eastern half.  In Inuktitut, the Inuit native language, Nunavut means "our land."

The arctic is one of the world's harshest livable environments.  It was most likely the last part of the world that humans were able to colonize.  The original in habitants of northern Canada were nomads, people who moved from place to place several times a year to take advantage of the food, water, game, or other resources only available in a particular place during a particular season.   Today, the native people of the Canadian arctic call themselves Inuit (INN-yoo-it), which means the people.  Theirs is a culture closely tied to the rhythms of nature. 

Nunavut Territorial Motto 
"Nunavut Sanginivut"

Inuktitut, means
  "Nunavut, our strength."

 

Territotial Flower: Purple Saxifrage

The Inuit have struggled desperately to retain hold on to their identity despite countless sufferings.  Many historical documents show the well adapted Inuit helping many ill prepared Europeans.  In return, the Inuit were exploited and mistreated; forgotten and abused.  Much of their unique culture was plagued by poor economic conditions, epidemics, and shortages of wildlife by the mid 1900's.  During the post World War II era, villages and families were uprooted and moved. 

The following decades brought a series of official grievances presented by the native Inuit against the Canadian government.  The idea of self-government became a possibility as negotiations with legislators gained momentum.  Outcomes from vital court cases also provided a future of hope.  On April 1, 1999, the map of Canada was forever changed when the Nunavut Territory (an area three times larger than Texas) emerged in the eastern arctic.  The long struggle for recognition had ended and a new era of modern government coupled with traditional Inuit values begun.  Today, Nunavut stands poised as role model, ready to lead.

Appearing to the outsider as a bleak and frozen landscape, the land of Nunavut is hardly empty.  Quite the opposite, it is an area teeming with wildlife.  This unique ecosystem is home to caribou, polar bears, seals, whales, some of the world's greatest fishers, and much more.  The vast expanse of land and water in Nunavut encompasses thousands of square miles; however amazingly enough, few people know about this fascinating, environmentally significant place.  

Territorial Bird: Rock Ptarmigan

Inuktitut Alphabet

 

Territorial License Plate

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