New Road Name For Muskoka Road 38 Will Be Mohawk People Road


Road names can reveal a lot about a community and how they want their history to be remembered

The first road in Muskoka renamed in honour of local Indigenous history and culture, is one step closer to being realized.

As this pivotal moment draws closer each day, it becomes increasingly clear – the renaming of Muskoka Road 38 represents a critical milestone in recognizing the history, culture and language of the Wahta Mohawks First Nation.

What’s in a name?

With overwhelming community support, the Wahta Mohawks First Nation led the engagement and name-selection process this winter and received numerous member-submitted name options for consideration. These names were reviewed by the Wahta Naming Committee, comprised of Council members, Elders, and Mohawk language speakers, with a final 3 names being selected, and the proposed new name being identified among the final 3.

A Tri-Council meeting was scheduled in late February and brought together members from the Wahta Mohawks First Nation, the Township of Muskoka Lakes, and the District of Muskoka. Peter Koetsier, Mayor of Township of Georgian Bay, chaired the meeting.

From the final 3 selected names, the proposed new name was unanimously supported by the Tri-Council members.

Kanien’kehá:ka Iohatátie

The new road name for Muskoka Road 38 will be in the Mohawk language, Kanien’kehá:ka Iohatátie, which translates to “Mohawk People Road”. Everyone can learn how to pronounce Kanien’kehá:ka Iohatátie by visiting our project website at

 “Recognizing Indigenous culture and history is a collective effort that requires strong partnerships – this process is an example of how collaboration can lead to meaningful change. By working together, we can ensure that the histories, cultures, and languages of Indigenous peoples are recognized and respected in our communities.”

– Jeff Lehman, District Chair – Muskoka District Council


“It has been a pleasure working alongside representatives of the District of Muskoka and the Township of Muskoka Lakes as we continue toward a history-making name change to the road that runs through our community. The new name, Kanien’kehá:ka Iohatátie, recognizes the Wahta Mohawks as a people and the territory where we live. Kanien’kehá:ka Iohatátie is no longer a number on a map (Muskoka Road 38, formerly Highway 660), it now indicates an active community of people who have a unique language, culture, and history in Muskoka.

– Chief Philip Franks, Wahta Mohawks First Nation


“On behalf of Council, we are honoured to be a part of this process. It is steps like the renaming of Muskoka Road 38 that recognize the importance of the languages, culture and history of Indigenous peoples.”

– Peter Kelly, Mayor – Township of Muskoka Lakes  

The new name has been supported by The Council of the Wahta Mohawks and Muskoka District Council, and the decision is planned to be ratified in April during The Township of Muskoka Lakes Council meeting.

Learn more at Audio-visual aids and resources are already available on the project page. More educational resources and opportunities are planned, including celebrating the new name with signage and an onsite renaming ceremony.



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