Community Name: Fort Providence
Traditional Name: Zhahti Koe (mission house)
Land Claim Area: Deh Cho
Electoral District: Deh Cho
Member of the Legislative Assembly: Michael M. Nadli
Member of Parliament: Dennis Bevington
Senator: Nick G. Sibbeston
Her Worship Mayor Tina Gargan
Hamlet of Fort Providence
Fort Providence, NT X0E 0L0
Location Fort Providence is located on the north-east bank of the Mackenzie River, 233 air km south-west of Yellowknife at 61'216 N latitude, 117'396 W longitude. The Hamlet is 72.4 air km from the west reaches of Great Slave Lake.
Population 759 (NWT Bureau of Statistics, 2010)
Languages South Slavey, Michif, English
Access The community is accessible by road year-round except during break-up and freeze-up. Regularly scheduled bus service is also available from both northern and southern points. The Department of Transportation operates the ferry service (no charge) over the Mackenzie River in the summer and maintains the ice road in the winter.
History The Yellowknife Chipewyan established a post following the arrival of Alexander Mackenzie however it was abandoned once Franklin went to the Coppermine (now Kugluktuk) area in the 1920s. The Roman Catholic Mission opened in 1861 and the set up of a Hudson Bay Company Post shortly afterward attracted the Slavey Dene into the area and a settlement was established. Agriculture was once a staple of life in the area with cattle ranching and farming being important aspects of the life. A school opened in 1896 and the construction of the Mackenzie Highway and the ferry crossing near the community marked a change in the economy.
Today the economy is based on the Mackenzie Highway traffic, the ferry crossing and provision of services to local residents and travelers. Tourism is also a key element with the sale of handicrafts such as moosehair tuftings, porcupine quill embroidery and beadwork being especially popular. In the winter trapping remains an important part of the economy and forest firefighting in the summer.