Prior to the arrival of Europeans, the Tla’amin Nation territory was a vast and heavily populated region. The area had a large number of permanent and seasonal occupation sites and settlements. Between 2016 and 2018, the qathet Historical Museum and Archives partnered with the Tla'amin Nation to document, map, and develop a database of these sites. Traditional place names, their meanings, history of use, and their contemporary place names were recorded.
The Tla’amin Nation is one of several Coast Salish cultures inhabiting the area surrounding the Georgia Strait. Traditional Tla’amin lands include the areas on the Northern Sunshine Coast from Stillwater (Lang Bay), north to the Malaspina Peninsula, and the islands of Cortes, Savary, Hernando, Harwood, and the northern half of Texada.
The qathet Regional District is composed of many diverse communities. Each community has its own unique history. Some of the first European settlements in the region were Texada Island and Lund. In the early 1900s, with the construction of a pulp and paper mill, many also settled in what is now known as the City of Powell River. Prior to amalgamation in 1955, this area consisted of the incorporated villages of Cranberry, Townsite, Wildwood, and Westview.
In the 1890s logging was well underway on the Northern Sunshine Coast. The timber in qathet’s forests is one of the reasons Europeans settled the Powell River area. Various logging companies logged the areas closest to the ocean first and then logged inland.