The Story & Meaning of Kabapikotawangag - AKRC
"Kabapikotawangag" means "the lake of the sand dunes and sand bars".
It is the traditional Anishinaabe name for the Lake of Woods. The lake was, and continues to be, the traditional and cultural centre for the Anishinaabe way of life; that includes hunting, fishing, trapping and harvesting as well as spiritual ceremonies and healing and, in contemporary times, recreation.
One Elder relates that during the time of inter-tribal conflict as late as the mid 1800's one raiding party was turned back from the sight of these mounds of sand that from a distance resembled a large concentration of Ojibway wigwams at the mouth of the Rainy River.
While most of the sand dunes and sandbars were located at the mouth of the river, others could be found throughout the lake, primarily within the open waters of the Big Traverse. However, after the treaty making process that was concluded in October of 1873 at the Northwest Angle of Kabapikotawangag, European settlement, progress and development raised the water levels that these sacred structures were effectively sunk.
In the spirit of respect for the lake and all that is represents to the Anishinaabeg, including language retention and cultural survival, the Chiefs have revived the designation under the corporate name for the Anishinaabeg of Kabapikotawangag Resource Council.