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sxʷeŋxʷəŋ təŋəxʷ James Bay Branch2018-11-15T11:27:25+00:00

sxʷeŋxʷəŋ təŋəxʷ JAMES BAY BRANCH

DayOpenClosed
Monday10:00 am6:00 pm
Tuesday10:00 am6:00 pm
Wednesday10:00 am9:00 pm
Thursday10:00 am6:00 pm
Friday10:00 am6:00 pm
Saturday10:00 am6:00 pm
Sunday1:00 pm5:00 pm

385 Menzies Street, Victoria, BC  V8V 0C2

Victoria City Council selected the name of the sxʷeŋxʷəŋ təŋəxʷ James Bay Branch.

Pronounced s-hweng hw-ung tongue-oo-hw, sxʷeŋxʷəŋ təŋəxʷ is the Lekwungen name for James Bay.

Listen to the pronunciation by Songhees Nation Elder Dr. Elmer Seniemten George.

WAV File:

MP3 File:

Here’s three-year-old Zachary showing off his pronunciation on opening day:

To select the branch name, the City of Victoria held a Name That Library campaign, which received more than 600 submissions. The greatest support was for a First Nations name. City Council consulted with the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations on the name.

In addition to naming the branch, City Council also named the two meeting rooms: the Dr. Elmer Seniemten George M.S.M. Community Room (pronounced Sen-eem-ten) and the Mifflin Wistar Gibbs Study Room (pronounced Wis-ter). See More Information below to learn more about these two extraordinary individuals.

Branch Features

  • Special areas reserved for kids and teens
  • Public computers
  • Mobile charging stations
  • Bookable community room and study rooms
  • Touchdown workstation

Branch Information

District Coordinator: Eileen Gillette

Branch Supervisor: Laura Baker

Parking: Street parking by meter and underground parking

Bus Routes: #2  BC Transit

All branches have printing and photocopying available. The cost is $0.25 per black and white page or $0.50 per colour page. Your library card serves as your copy card; you can add funds to it at the branch. If you don’t have a library card, bring a piece of photo ID, and we will be happy to make you one to provide access to printing and copying services.

More Information

Victoria City Council named the branch’s meeting rooms after two extraordinary individuals in the community:

About Dr. Elmer Seniemten George

Dr. Elmer Seniemten George is a Songhees Elder, who is one of the few remaining fluent speakers of Lekwungen, a dialect of the Northern Straits Salish Peoples. He stewards the survival not only of the language, but also of the traditional teachings and culture embedded in the words. In 2016, Elder Elmer Seniemten George received an honorary degree from Royal Roads University. In 2017, he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) from the Governor General of Canada for his work with Elder John Elliott in translating the Douglas Treaties of the mid-1850s into the SENĆOŦEN First Nations languages. This work has shed light on the lack of understanding that existed when the treaties were first signed and has provided a foundation for reconciliation. The Songhees and Esquimalt Nations submitted Dr. Elmer Seniemten George’s name for consideration in the City of Victoria’s Name That Library campaign.

About Mifflin Wistar Gibbs

Mifflin Wistar Gibbs was a James Bay resident and local merchant who served as a Victoria City Councillor from 1866 to 1869. In 2016, the City of Victoria declared November 19 “Mifflin Wistar Gibbs Day” in honour of Gibbs becoming the first black person elected to public office in British Columbia the same day in 1866. The BC Black History Awareness Society and members of the community submitted his name for consideration in the City of Victoria’s Name That Library campaign.

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Peek-a-boo! Here’s a quote to brighten your day:

“When in doubt, go to the library.” – Hermione Granger