Naming Ayamdagoot Campus

The late highly respected Tagish elder Angela Sidney named the new campus of Yukon College Ayamdagoot when it opened in 1988. In an interview with Lisa Tremblay, published December 1988 in The Optimst, Mrs. Sidney speaks about the origin of the name.

Q. What was the name you gave to the new Yukon College?

Mrs. Sidney: Ayamdagoot. It means, "it took off from the place where it was". At the beginning I understand it was going to be built in the riverside. Well, I had a name, a name for the riverside too. But since they move it, I gave it a name: my niece's Indian name, Shirley Lindstrom. She passed away about two months ago I guess. That was her Indian name.

My father's people, Dahkl'awèdí, Wolf people, they build a killer whale house across the river there. And then they move it further back because they found it was too close to the edge of the bank. And when they were having potlatch for the house, they name the child Adax.Ayamdagoot. It means "it took off from there", "it moved", "it walked away".

That's why I gave it that name. And I didn't say the full name. I just said, Ayamdagoot. It means, "it moved", "it walked away".

And so I asked her sisters if it was O.K. and they said it was O.K. They liked it. They'd be proud of it. They'd be glad. It's going to be just like she's living yet! They hear the name, see. That's what I tell them and that's the way I feel about it too.