Lillooet is a community located adjacent to the Fraser River, between Lytton and Clinton. The area was named after the local T'it'q'et band, then known as the Lillooet band.1 The area was originally called Cayoosh Flat, likely because the body of a dead Cayuse, a mountain pony,2 was found in the nearby river.3
HBC explorer A. C. Anderson was commissioned to establish a route from Harrison Lake to Cayoosh.4 His route connecting Harrison, Lillooet, Anderson, and Seton Lakes was the first route to the upper Fraser and Cariboo gold fields—Cayoosh received the name Lillooet in 1860 because it was here that the trail from Lillooet Lake reached the Fraser River.5
In 1862, Lillooet became known as “Mile Zero” of the numbered mile-houses along the Cariboo Wagon Road.6 The HBC's short-lived Fort Berens was on the opposite bank of the Fraser from Lillooet.7
  • 1. Anderson Lake, BC Geographical Names Information System, T'it'q'et, Aboriginal Canada Portal.
  • 2. Cayuse Horse, All Horse Breeds.
  • 3. Lillooet, BC Geographical Names Information System.
  • 4. G. P. V. Akrigg and H. B. Akrigg, British Columbia Place Names (Vancouver: UBC Press, 1997), 153.
  • 5. Ibid.
  • 6. Ibid.
  • 7. Ibid.
Mentions of this place in the documents