Inuit migration and the establishment of camps or temporary settlements was an adaptive practice that responded to available resource, hunting, and trade opportunities. An area’s suitability was determined by the size of the population to be supported, as well as the duration and frequency of occupation. The location of settlements varied seasonally and annually, though familiarity with the local geography encouraged repeat visits. Leading up to the 1960s, Inuit settlements on the Belcher Islands tended to fluctuate in population composition, location, and degree of interaction with other settlements. The community divided into north and south camps at opposite ends of the islands, and the two groups’ specialized knowledge of the region determined their settlement preferences.
Left: Settlement Movements, Belcher Islands by Lateral Office.
Right: Building an Igloo, Sanikiluaq, NU, 2014. Photograph by Brad Wutke.
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