Entwined Trees - Midway, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 49° 00.386 W 118° 46.248
11U E 370498 N 5429681
Quick Description: These entwined trees can be found in a little park in Midway. The park is along Haynes Street at 6th Avenue.
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 9/25/2021 1:06:58 PM
Waymark Code: WM1516R
Views: 0

Long Description:
PIC In the years 1857-1861 the International Boundary Line was being surveyed between Canada and the U.S., one result being that the local indigenous people would be separated by the boundary. Henceforth, they would not be able to cross back and forth between the two countries, some being forced onto a reservation at Colville, Washington, while others were settled on reservations in Canada, in what would, in 1871, become the Province of British Columbia. As the people of the First Nations Band were being separated one of the First Nations entwined two sapling lodgepole pines, saying: 'Though divided we are united still, we are one.'

Over the years the two trees grew together, becoming one tall tree. The tree has been treated with reverence and respect ever since.

When the 2010 Olympic Torch Relay carried the Olympic flame 45,000 kilometres to 1,000 communities in every corner of the country it made a stop at the little village of Midway. More specifically, it made a stop at the Entwined Trees, complete with a photo opportunity there.

Text from the Entwined Trees historical marker at the north edge of the park is reproduced further below.

Opened in Entwined Trees Park in 2015, the Gateway Learning Circle was created by renowned native artist David Seven Deers of Greenwood, BC. The Gateway Learning Circle consists of twenty stone seating blocks, each with an animal motif carved into its top. Each block appears to consist of pure white quartz, a type of stone somewhat common in the area, but seldom of such fine quality.

One enters the Gateway Learning Circle under a Stonehenge-like structure at least eight feet in height then passes a polished andesite sculpture of a raven, entitled Heelah – Mother Raven. The gateway is comprised of three rectangular pieces of andesite, each weighing more than three tons. The stone seating is arrayed in a circle, with the entrance structure at its head and Heelah – Mother Raven just inside.

The Gateway Learning Circle is fashioned after the traditional native Talking Circle, a very old way of bringing native people of all ages together in a quiet, respectful manner for the purposes of teaching, listening, learning and sharing. A very effective way to remove barriers and to allow people to express themselves with complete freedom, it is becoming more and more popular in mainstream society.

The Entwined Trees
When the International Boundary Line was being surveyed in 1857-1861, the major portion of the large Indian (First Nations) Band then living in this area moved to the reservation in Colville, Washington. One of the Indians (First Nations) entwined two sapling pines, saying: 'Though divided we are united still, we are one.' This tree symbolizes the spirit of friendship existing between Canada and the United States.

This is the story of the Entwined Trees and the Olympic Torch Relay as told by Vidar Eilertsen. "I started working for VANOC in June 2007, and we did a research route hard drive from Golden to Kelowna in October 2007. We had fantastic fall weather with spectacular colors in the forest, and white snow on top of the mountains. Canada and BC showed the best of its beauty to us. It was our Route Manager, Rozanne Pitbeam (from Melbourne, Australia) who found on the internet background material for all the communities. The story about the Entwined Pine trees in Midway was very interesting and we planned the route in your community around a stop and photo opportunity there. The text on the plaque and the spirit of the message is just great: 'Though divided we are united still - we are one'.

This tree symbolizes the spirit of friendship existing between Canada and the United States. I remember we got "goose bumps" when reading it. The message of the Olympic Flame and the spirit of the Torch Relay are about Friendship, so we thought this would be a good place for the stop when the Olympic Flame visited Midway. Aboriginal participation and culture was also a key factor in our route plan, and although we did not have an aboriginal ceremony around the stop, it still highlighted the culture and message
From the Historical Marker at the Park
Photo goes Here
Type of Marker: Cultural

Type of Sign: Historic Site or Building Marker

Describe the parking that is available nearby: Parking is available along the north side of the park

What Agency placed the marker?: Village of Midway

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