OTD: Frobisher Bay renamed ‘Iqaluit’

On today’s date in 1987, Frobisher Bay was officially renamed Iqaluit, reverting to its original Inuktitut name meaning “the place of many fish.”

The decision followed a poll of the community as well as an official decision of the executive council of the Government of the Northwest Territories.

In 2007, the Royal Canadian Mint featured 16th-century English explorer Martin Frobisher – the namesake of Frobisher Bay – on a $20 Proof silver coin. It was issued to mark the 125th anniversary of the First International Polar Year, the first of several multinational expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic.

Designed by Laurie McGraw, the reverse prominently features Frobisher, who made the first to attempt to discover the Northwest Passage aboard the Gabriel in 1576. A ship also appears alongside a 16th-century compass and an Inuit paddling a traditional kayak.

The coin has a weight of 27.78 grams, a diameter of 40 millimetres and a mintage of 15,000 pieces.

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