Shared Traditional Territories
The name Hootalinqua is from the Northern Tutchone word Hudinlin, meaning "runing against the mountains". Hootalinqua was a popular gathering site for trade and visiting between the Tlingit, Southern Tutchone and Northern Tutchone people. Many First Nation Families hunted, fished and trapped in this area. They travelled on the river by watercraft in the summer and by foot and dogteam in the winter. In the early 1900s, First Nation Families living along the Thirty Mile stretch of the Yukon River, and on the Teslin River, prospected and cut wood for the sternwheelers.
A prospector named George Holt found gold nuggets on gravel bars in the Hootalinqua (Teslin) River in the 1870s. The news drew southern prospector to the north long before the world heard of Klondike riches. Some of the early prospectors worked the river bars and shores of the teslin and Yukon rivers and spread word of an easy route into the interior over the Chilkoot Pass. By 1896 there were 100 miners living in the Hootalinqua region. Two significant discoveries of placer gold around Livingstone Creek kept mining interest focused on this area and Hootalinqua became the supply centre.