Eskimo Indian Aleut


AFOGNAK .................................………………………………………… 1

ALITAK .................................……………………………………………. 3

ANVIK ..................................…………………………………………….. 4

ATTU ...................................……………………………………………... 6


BARROW .................................………………………………………….. 7

BEAVER ................................... ………………………………………… 12

BETHEL .................................…………………………………………… 13

CANTWELL ...............................………………………………………… 14

CHIGNIK ................................…………………………………………… 15

CIRCLE .................................……………………………………………. 16


DIOMEDE .................................. ………………………………………… 18


EAGLE ..................................…………………………………………….. 20

EGEGIK .................................……………………………………………. 21

ELIM .................................……………………………………………….. 22


FLAT ..................................………………………………………………. 23

FORTUNA LEDGE (MARSHALL) ...............…………………………… 24

FORT YUKON ............................………………………………………... 26


GALENA ..............................……………………………………………... 31


HAYCOCK ...............................…………………………………………... 32

KARLUK..................................……………………………………………. 35

KENAI ..................................……………………………………………… 34

KING COVE ........................….....…………………………………………36

KIVALINA ...............................…………………………………………… 37

KOKRINES ...............................……………………………………………40

KOTZEBUE ...............................………………………………………….. 41

KOYUK ..................................…………………………………………….. 42

KOYUKUK .............................……………………………………………..43


LONG BEACH…………………………………………………………….. 44


MANLEY HOT SPRINGS ..................……………………………………. 45

METLAKATLA .............................……………………………………….. 46


NASH HARBOR ....…...................………………………………………… 48

NEELIK .................................…………………………………………….. 49

NOATAC .................................…………………………………………… 51

NOME..................................... …………………………………………….53

NOORVIK ................................……………………………………………54

NULATO................................…………………………………………….. 56

NUNAPITCHUK ............................………………………………………. 58


PERRYVILLE ...........................………………………………………….. 60

PILOT POINT ............................………………………………………….. 61

PILOT STATION ...........................……………………………………… 63

POINT HOPE ...............................………………………………………… 64

POINT LAY .............................…………………………………………… 65


RAMPART ................................………………………………………….. 68

RUBY .....................................……………………………………………. 75

SELAWIK ................................…………………………………………… 76

SHISHMAREF .............................………………………………………… 79

SNAG POINT ..............................………………………………………… 80

STEVENS VILLAGE ........................……………………………………... 81

ST. MARK'S MISSION .....................……………………………………... 82


TANANA .................................…………………………………………… 85

TATITLEK ................................. …………………………………………. 85

TELLER .................................…………………………………………….. 86


UNALAKLEET .............................……………………………………….. 87

UNALASKA ...............................…………………………………………. 88


WAINRIGHT .............................………………………………………….. 90

WHITE MOUNTAIN .........................……………………………………. 91

WISEMAN ................................……………………………………………94


YAKUTAT .................................………………………………………….. 95





My home is located among the first islands on the Aleutian chain,
on Afognak Island, near Kodiak. It is on the coast so that means there
are lots of boats that travel back and forth, some from outside and
others from almost all parts of Alaska from Seward to Unalaska. Our only
way of travel is by boats.

The climate is quite favorable: hot in summers and with very
mild winters.

There are about 300 people in the village of which one-third is white.

For a living the men fish in the summer and hunt in the winter.
During the three summer months they do a lot of fishing of all sorts and
for all sorts of fish. They then sell the fish to a cannery and after
the summer months are over they go out and get fish for their own use,
for instance they dry fish, salt, and smoke them. That is for their
own winter use. Besides these things they grow all kinds of vegetables
which are very useful to the people.

In the winter they go hunting foxes for their fur and some
ducks for their food. Of course there is some other meat they can get,
 like bears, elk and rabbit. They sell the fur that they get. Some are
lucky but still others don't get as much as the ones who are the most
experienced hunters. There are two or three fox farms, but they are
all owned by the white people.

For recreation they have dances which is one of the best hobbies
of the younger generation especially. Then there is baseball, basketball
and other games which the white people have brought in with them. They
have parties and school programs quite often and so that helps us natives
to be sociable.

The village is governed by the principal of the school and it
helps the people a lot.

Quite a few of the people have been outside and have got some of
their friends from the States interested in the village. Some persuaded
them to come and see for themselves. Then, too, there are a lot of
boats traveling and tourists who are on board come ashore and look over
the place.

There are now more boats than there used to be and they come
oftener. It seems as thought whenever the people go to a place like Sew-
ard or Kodiak that they come back with something new to do every time.

Page 1

And they are always willing to show their fellow men the things they
have learned.

Most everyone who can afford to buy a radio has one. Of course
they are not electric like we have here at school, but they are battery
radios instead.

Some people who can really afford electric lights have a little
motor which we call a Delco. It is kept in the basement and is a great
help and some younger boys are having lessons on how they work.

They used to have silent moving pictures before but now they
have talkies which the Coast Guard cutters have helped the villagers to

Since we have a new schoolhouse they have had nice, worthwhile
books which all the students enjoy reading in our little school li-

They have improved the hospital down in Kodiak for
the use of the natives from the nearby villages like Ouzinkie and Afognak. They
also have a new and well-experienced doctor.

The homes of the people in the village are becoming more and
more attractive slowly but surely and the people are very hospitable.

Marie Malutin

Page 2






My home is 550 miles from Anchorage, on the southwestern cor-
ner of Kodiak Island. There is a population of only 95.

We fish for the canneries and work there, too. The price of
work there is seventy-five cents an hour. We fish two months and five
days, then get paid off according to how many fish we caught and sold
to the cannery. In a good season we make lots of money, but sometimes
it isn't so good. After we get paid off we buy our winter supplies of
food and clothes.

We have dances and play ball and go skating for amusement;

some people go to Kodiak in the fall and others go to Karluk. To go to

Kodiak we have to go by water, but we can walk to Karluk overland. It

It takes four days hiking to make it, but there are cabins along the way

where we can stop overnight.


Alitak is governed by the government school teachers. In the

summer there are fish wardens around to see that the fishermen obey the

fishing laws, and the game warden comes around once in awhile, too.

Herman Andrewvitch

Page 3





My home is a small village called Anvik,

located in the interior of Alaska; the Anvik River

flows into the Yukon and the village is at the mouth

of the Anvik. There are hills surrounding the place

and mountains in the distance so that most people who

come to see Anvik admire the beautiful sunsets we

have, and the pretty scenery.


The climate is very changeable in the win-

ter; sometimes the thermometer will drop to 60

below zero, sometimes it is mild all winter and rains

quite a bit. The first part of the summers are quite

warm but in August and September it rains quite a bit

and gets cooler.


There are about ninety people in the vil-

lage. Ten years ago Anvik was a larger village with

a population of about 200, but in the spring of 1927

all the people had the flu and pneumonia, and the

result was that most of the older people and some of

the young folks died at that time.


Most of the people leave the village in the

summer, scattering around the Yukon to do their fish-

ing, since the kings and silver salmon do not go up

the Anvik River. Some of them catch whitefish as

well as the king, silver and dog salmon; they salt

some of them, putting them in kegs for future use,

can some of them, make up salmon strips and use the

rest for dog feed. Most of the people stop their
fishwheels on Sundays and spend the day in Anvik.
The 4th of July is always spent in the village. Most
of the villagers raise good garden vegetables.

Some of the people cut cord wood during
the winter and then sell it to the SS Nenana during
the summer. Some of the men work at the sawmill in
summer; the men bring in a raft of logs and the
Mission sawmill cuts it for them—in payment they
give half the logs to the Mission. Others work for
the mission during the summer. In the fall the men
leave home for their winter camps but the women stay
in the village so their children can go to school.
The men trap for foxes, wolverine, mink, otter,
weasels, marten, beaver when the season is open, but
come home about once a month and on all the holidays.
The women, in the meantime, make and sell beaded
moccasins, mittens, cushions, gloves, scissor cases,
and picture frames, fur boots, caps, parkas,
and fur mittens.

Page 4


The people all like to dance at home so they

have them quite often, celebrating every holiday with

dancing. We skate, ski and, drive dogs and have par-

ties. The days we enjoy the most are Hallowe’en, Christ-

nes, Valentine's Day, Easter and the 4th of July. They

have card parties quite often, too. Picnics are also

one of the main recreations.


Most of the people have outboard motors,

or larger gasboats. Those who don't own one of them

are able to borrow from their neighbors when they

have to travel from place to place. But if they are

going longer distances, they travel on the "Nenana".

In the winter they use their dog teams, but in emer-

gencies they often go by plane.


There is an. Episcopal Mission at Anvik and

the one in charge looks after the village. The U. S.

Marshal passes thru once during the summer and the

head of the Mission gives him a report about the



About five families have radios, and there

is a lot of visiting around at nights to hear the

news from KFQD. The ones who have short wave listen

in the day time to amateurs and their friends go in

to listen, usually saying, "Well, I came to hear the



The "Nenana" comes every two weeks in the

summer, bringing our mail and freight for four months.

during October while it is freezing up we do not get

any mail at all. The first of November the mail

plane cones with mail every two weeks for six months.

During May while we are waiting for the ice to go,

we get no mail till the boat starts running.


The people who are most ambitious raise

good gardens in the summer; lettuce, cabbage, tur-

nips, rutabagas, beets, carrots, radishes, onions,

spinach, potatoes, peas and cauliflower. The mission

has its own hothouse where they raise tomatoes, cu-

cumbers and green peppers: they sell some of these

things to the villagers.


[signed] Alberta Fisher




Page 5




Attu? Some people lift an eyebrow, shrug

or shiver. They wonder how anyone could live out there

and be contented. Yet to my ideas of happiness, I don't

believe I have ever seen a happier community!

It is the last island of the Aleutian

chain and is rather large in size, but the village it-

self has a population of only 45.


In the summer, the climate is very warm,

But gets very cold in the winter time, tthe temperature

often reaching 30°.


All the men fish for cod to be shipped to

the states, to say nothing or halibut and salmon that

is caught for their own use in the way of food. Another

food considered very delicious is fresh seal meat.

Having eaten it myself, I know it is much more tender

than beef but of course tastes differ.


Ways of recreation vary in this small vil-

lage. People amuse themselves in any way possible.

During the year there are only three boats. Of course

they do have their dances quite often. In short, they

have few means of recreation.


Every Sunday, the entire village attends

church, but are not in any manner foolishly religious.

They have their own religion and they have established

a new church by themselves.


The only means of travel is by boat. They

own their own power boats and do all their yearly seal

hunting by boat. Every fall the men with their fam-

ilies leave for the fox islands to trap and remain un-

til Spring.


The village is practically self-governed.

Of course they have a chief to care for all the money



The people have little or no contact with

the outside. This is due to the fact that the island

is so far out of the way.


Improvements may be made by more frequent

boats calling at the village. Radios, doctors and a

nurse would, help, but what they would want for their own

happiness is hard to say.


[signed] Stephainta Tarkauoff



Page 6






Barrow is located on the northern-most part of Alaska. It is

on the shores of the Arctic Ocean. The place is a low country; there are

no mountains and no trees. It is just bare tundra. The climate is al-

ways extremely cold in winter. The temperature goes down to 45° below

zero and sometimes more. In summer the weather is quite warm. The hot-

test part is usually in July. The sun never goes down in the months of

June, July and the first part of August. There are no nights during

those months. The place starts freezing up in September and the ocean

freezes up in the month of November. The sun disappears in December and

reappears on the twenty-first of January.


The population of Barrow is from 400 to 600. When the people

all gather together at Christmas time it is usually 600.


In the 18th Century Barrow used to be a whaling place. Many

sailing vessels would come for whaling from the United States. They

would return home with ship loads of blubber and whale bones. Sometimes

three or four ships would winter in Barrow and also east of Barrow. Quite

a number of ships were wrecked at Barrow in those days. The remains of

these wrecks can still be seen, things such as big tanks and heavy boilers.


The chief occupation of Barrow people is hunting game. In win-

ter there is fox trapping, wolf hunting, seal hunting, hunting for polar

bear, and also the fishing in the interior. Trappers sell their skins

in exchange for white man's food and stuff. In wolf hunting they get a

bounty for the skins they get. They can also sell the skins at the stores.

Wolf is used for parka ruffs. The legs are used for high boots, which are

very useful in winter.


The seals are also very useful. The meat is used for food and

the blubber is put in seal pokes and conserved for winter use. The skin

is used in many ways. It is used for fines, seal nets, and waterproof .

boots and for soles. The Ugrood skins are also used for boot soles, for

heavy lines and oomiak [umiak] covering and for kyaks [kayaks].


There is also a reindeer company owned by the natives. Almost

a whole village owns reindeer. They butcher reindeer in fall and summer.

The meat is used for food while the skin is used for parkas, fur pants and

for fur socks and mittens. The meat is sometimes sold to the whites at

eight cents a pound.


In the month of April there is whaling. This is the most import-

ant of all hunting. When one whale is caught everyone in the village

gets his share. Sometimes when the whalers are fortunate enough they would

catch nine or ten whales in a spring. The skin boots are used in whal-

ing for they are easier to handle in case of danger from the ice breaking.

Once in a while the whale boats are used for whaling. The meat and muk-

tuk are stored in the ice cellars and the peoples houses, enough for the

whole winter.


Page 7


After the ice breaks away, usually in July, they start walrus

hunting. The walrus hunting is the most exciting tine I've ever had in

my life. When you get into a big herd like a hundred or two hundred on

a big cake of ice it's a thrilling time. The walrus hunters just right

into them and shoot about at a distance of twelve or twenty feet way

from the herd. Sometimes the men would get up on the ice and shoot. From

a herd like this they can get anywhere from ten to twenty walrus. Some-

times they don't dare to shoot when there are too many because they are

dangerous when they are many. They can punch holes in boats with their

tusks. The meat is used for dog feed in the winter and the tusks are sold

to the stores.


To make money a few people work for the whites and in the sum-

mer they haul freight for the traders and the whites and make a little

money. In the fall they cut ice for the stores and earn more money.

There is also the whalebone basket making, which which increasing. Good

baskets are solf for fifteen to thirty dollars each. An expert basket

maker can finish one basket in less than a week.


For fuel we use pitch instead of coal. Driftwood is also used

a great deal. There is a pitch lake about 65 miles from Barrow. In

summer we use launches and dories for hauling pitch.


There are three stores in Barrow; two owned by whites and one

a native cooperative. The latter is getting bigger and better every year.


For recreation we skate in the fall; play fall; football and

volleyball, and celbrate the Fourth of July. On Christmas we play lots

of games and dance. After the whaling season is over we celebrate the

catching of the whales with "Nalookatuk". We have blanket tossing from

morning until evening.


Our traveling in winter if by dogteam; in summer by skinboats,

or launches. The mail carrier comes by dogteam three or four tines dur-

ing the winter; we get occasionally by plane and in summer our mail comes

by ship. We have a radio stationoperated by the Signal Corps.


For government we have a U. S. Commissioner and also a village



Harold Kaveolook

 Page 8




Barrow is located on the farthest north tip of the Terri-

tory of Alaska. It is all tundra where no trees grow and no vegetables

can be grown. It is about one thousand miles north of Eklutna.


The temperature at Barrow goes about 50 degrees above zero

during the summer, and in winter it has been as cold as 45 degrees be-

low zero, tho it is usually not so cold as that.


The population is about 700.


The people of Barrow work as longshoremen, janitors, car-

penters, carving ivory, making whale-bone baskets, sewing skins and

making mukluks and parkas.


The people live on whale meat, seals, polar bears, walrus,

and many foods of the white men, which may be bought from the stores.


There are many things which keep the people of Barrow busy.

The women make parkas, boots, gun-cases, sleeping bags for men in the

winter, parka-covers and many other things. The men work at repairing

equipment, making iron stoves and building their small houses.


In the winter the boys and young men often play football.

Sometimes we go for dogteam rides just with three to five dogs, for

pleasure. We often play volley ball for recreation.


On the 4th of July everyone gathers for a big celebration

when they play all the Eskimo and white man games and have big feasts.


The village is governed by the commissioner and the native

village council, which is advised and directed by the school teachers.


[signed] Stephen Ahvakana

Page 9




Barrrow is located on the northernmost part of

Alaska. Just because it is located there, most of the

people think it gets very cold, but Fairbanks, which

is quite a way south of Barrow gets just as cold as Bar- r

row or colder in the winter. The temperature is about

40 to 50 below zero in the winter and this summer the e

wamest we had was 50° above, which was too warm for most

of the people. The population is approximately 300.


Mostof the people make their living by hun-

ting all kinds of animals, foxes in winter, whales in n

Spring, walrus in Summer, and some of the people go u p

inland just before the freeze up and fish on some of the

creeks. So a fellow is kept very busy during the year

if he does all these things.


In spite of all the things that the people

have to do to make a living, they find time for recre-

atin. Holidays like Christmas and the 4th of July are

enjoyed by the people. Games are played which they like.

This summer the favorite ones were baseball and foot-

ball, Eskimo style. Five years ago just before I left

home I remember that on the 4th of July that every-

body played football. Men and women, boys and girls,

young and old played football and that was the only time

I have ever seen that happen. Nowadays just the young

people play the game.


Practically all the traveling where I come

from is done by dogteam. We have long winters up there

and during that time we use dogs for traveling. You

can't do much traveling in the winter if you don't have

dogs, so in order to have dogs you have to have feed

for them. My dad is always anxious to go out walrus

hunting so he can have lots of dog feed during the win-

ter. Without the dogs he can't have the job of carrying

the mail, which pays pretty well. Summer they use laun-

ches, whaleboats and canoes, getting from one place to

another. Airplanes are used rarely, and the wireless

operator up there has a snowmobile that he uses when he

goes on a trip once in a while.


The village is governed by the commissioner

and the council men. The commissioner hasn't much to

do unless something comes up like a man's stealing. The

council men do most of the governing but the commission-

er sometimes gets after the council men if they don't

see that the people clean up.


Page 10


During the winter months we get our mail

four times a year by dog team. Summer we get mail by

boats that come up, and the airplanes sometimes go up

and bring mail. Like last summer, quite a few planes

came up and each one of them brought mail except the

Russian plane. All the whites up there have radios

and also some of the natives, so we get all the news,

and the wireless station is the place where we get the

news. The operator broadcasts twice a week, so the

people of the outside world knows what is going on wa y

up there.

[signed] Henry Panigeo


Page 11





My home is located near the Arctic

Circle on the Yukon River. Thiss small town has

a population of about 150 people. There are

no hills near the river at that place, and the

nearest ones are about 14 miles back of the

town. These are low hills, however, with a

great many lakes.


The climate is cold in winter, the

temperature ranging from zero to 45 below. It

gets very warm in the summer, especially dur-

ing July and August.


The people at Beaver depend for

their living mostly upon trapping, altho some

engage in mining for gold or prospecting for

other minerals. The trappers sell their fur

to the fur buyers who come through Beaver or

to the store keeper in return for food and

clothing. Those who trap in the winters usu-

spend their summers in fishing--they sell some

of their fish, but most of it they keep for

themselves and their dogs.


For recreation the people read,

have dances, hike, ski, skate, take dog rides,

visit each other. In summer the boys swim

a good deal, but very few of the girls know



We travel by dog teams in the win-

ter; in summer with motor boats. Some of us

are able to travel by airplane winter or sum-



The only government we have is the

United States marshal. Contacts are made

with other people by travel, radio, news-

papers and magazines, and mail between vil-


[signed] Katherine McGuire

Page 12





My home is located on mission ground--where

the first missionarys made their homes; later they

called, it Bethel. Now the people from below the town

are moving up to Bethel because they may receive

mail and supplies there by boat or air. The pop-

ulation now is about 300.


In the winter it gets very cold; January is

the coldest month, when the temperature stays around.

10° below zero. When one travels from place to

place by dogteam one feels the cold most.


The people fish starting in June or July

and either dry or salt, smoke or can the salmon.

In the winter there is some fishing for pikes,

with hooks, thru the ice. To earn money many of

the people work for the traders or do freighting

down the river or up the river as far as McGrath.

The Eskimos there trap or hunt fur-bearing animals

such as foxes of all kinds, mink, muskrat, beaver,

and land otter.


Recreations are Eskimo dances and games,

or moving pictures provided by the Northern Commer-

cial Company.


There are three schools in and near Bethel.

Two are in town and one is about 18 miles above

the village. One in Bethel is a government native

school, to the eightth grade. The territorial

school has classes to the l2th grade. The mission

school has classes to the 8th grade.


Travel is done mostly by dogteam in the win-

ter; by boats and airplanes in the summer. There is

a telegraph station in Bethel, and. many of the people

own their own radios.


Bethel is governed by a U. S. Commissioner

and a U. S. Marshal. The Eskimos have to have a

permit to kill the reindeer for their families. In

the fall and winter, they kill reindeer and save

the meat, and make parkas, mukluks and mitts from

the skins.

[signed] Ivan Jordan


Page 13





Cantwell, Alaska is the name of my hone town. It's a big name

for such a small place. It's just a small village on the Alaska Railroad

located near Mt. McKinley National Park.


How many people live in Cantwell; only between 20 and 30. Most

of the men work in gold mines nearby or just go out and hunt for a living.

Cantwell is a good hunting ground, most people travel around by dogteam

altho some use caterpillar tractors and. others use planes to go to the



Many of the people go outside from Cantwell after the freezeup

while the ones that are left usually go out trapping.


Most all of the houses have radios; radio is about the only

thing the people have to enjoy here besides the busting and fishing and



The snow gets very deep in the wintertime and sometimes the

ice covers the railroad tracks.


There are lots of brown bears and lots of blueberries around

the village. We stay clear of the bears and eat the berries.


Some people like Cantwell but it's too small for me.


Sam Pedro

Page 14





Chignik is located on the lower side of the Alaska Peninsula.

The climate there in the winter is rather cold. It snows a lot and blows

hard enough to shake the houses. In the sunnier it is sunny most of the

time, raining mostly in the months of March and April.

There are four canneries at Chignik but only one is operating,

and that one is owned by Captain Crosby. Before when the Alaska Packers

cannery was operating, Cp. Crosby used to take in only natives from

Perryville and most of the Chignik natives for help.


We fish in the summer, for all kinds of fish. The natives buy

most of their food supply from Crosby's store because the prices aren't

so high as they are in the Packers or PAF stores. And they also put

up fish to smoke, dry and salt. In the winter the natives go up to the

lakes and trap and hunt for fur and caribou. Some of the white people

go out to their islands and trap foxes.


There are three stores and a liquor store which is owned by

a Mr. and Mrs. Anderson. We do not have a marshal there. But if some-

one does not obey the law they just send for Mr. Peterson, the marshal

at Unga. The population is about 210.

There were two schools; one government and one territorial.

When the boys and girls are thru with grade school they can either go

to the Jessie Lee Home at Seward or the Kodiak Mission for more school-

ing. Some of the boys and girls that are old enough to work in the

cannery go outside for a trip or go to high school, which many of them

have done in the past.

Irene Osbekoff


Page 15






Circle is my home town, and is located near the Arctic

Circle; at one time, in the early days it was thought our village

was on the circle, hence its name; later it was found to be somewhat



In the early days there were five or six thousand people

living in the town of Circle, but times have changed and now there

are between one hundred and one hundred and fifty. I do not know much

of the history of the town except that the gold rush caused the place

to grow very rapidly, and the lack of gold has made it shrink.


During the winter, most of the people hunt and trap out in

the surrounding country. Some go to wood camps where they cut wood for

people who remain in the village. In the summer, most of the people

go to their fish camps where they catch and dry fish for winter use. 


Winter is the time for many parties, dances, and all the

outdoor winter sports of sliding, coasting, skiing, skating and racing.

During the summer, there are usually parties only when the boats come

in and tie up on their trip from Whitehorse and Dawson. 


We receive our mail every week during the winter; it comes

to us both by plane and by dogteam. In the summer, buses carry the

mail on the Steese Highway from Fairbanks, and the mail boats on the

Yukon bring mail from both up-and down-river. 


In Circle we have a telephone system, tho there are very

few telephones. Many families have their own radios. 


Florence Boyle 


 Page 16




Circle is up along the Yukon River;

it isn't a very big town, with a population of

about 100 people. In the winter the weather is

so cold that the thermometer sometimes goes

down as far as 70 below or more. In the summer

it doesn't get so very hot—only once in a

while. It rains and blows a good deal in the



The people go trapping and hunting

in the winter. In the summer they make fish

wheels, and work in the stores or on the Steam-

boats. Those are the only ways of making money.

The men and boys go hunting and dry the meat

or fish and the women and girls pick berries

or make beaded mocassins or other things to

sell to tourists.


Circle has a church and a place to

dance. They dance on holidays only, and have

Church every Sunday. The women and men some-

times play cards or tell stories, while the

kids play with balls, go swimming or have pic-

nics. In the winter they go outdoors and

play with snowballs, go coasting, skating or



The people can travel by cars,

boats, and steamboats in the summer and in

winter they can go by dogteams, horses, or

by plane. There is a store in Circle, where

we get the mail. They have a radio station

in the N. C. Co. store and telephone in the

store and some other telephones in places

around town.


There is a road from Circle to Fair-

banks and on thru to Valdez. We get most of

our supplies from Fairbanks or Valdez. Even in

the winter we can travel to Fairbanks—it is

162 miles to Fairbanks and about 520 to Valdez. 


[signed] Lois Peters 






My home is located in the Bering Sea, one hundred and eighty

miles northwest of Nome. The name of the island is Diomede. The

village is located on the west side of the island.

The climate of Diomede is much warmer than the mainland in the

winter time. The termperature ranges from twenty to thirty-five below

zero in the winter. In order to protect ourselves from cold, we use

mukluks and parkas. The parkas are made from reindeer and squirrel

skins. She mukluks are made from either reindeer legs or seal skins.

In the summer we wear lighter clothing. In the first part of July, we

have warm days until the last part of August. We have very little rain,

but in the winter the snow fall is rather heavy.

The approximate number of people on the island is one hundred and


The people at hone make their living by hunting and carving

ivory. Fishing is not so common. The fish they catch are bullheads,

tomcods, bluecods, etc. There is also some crabbing in the winter time.

The people over on big Diomede Island do more trapping than we do for

the reason that the island is much larger than our little Diomede and it

belongs to the Russian government. The Russians do not allow any Amer-

ican to trap foxes in their territory or get any kind of fur. About

eight or ten years ago we used to get most of our furs from Siberia,

such as reindeer, wolverine, wolf, and white fox. In April we start to

hunt for whales, seals and walrus.

Recreations at home are skating, snowshoeing, hand ball, foot-

ball and Eskimo dancing. Since there are no movies, the people spend the

rest of the evenings by telling jokes and old-time stories.

There is no traveling in winter time at Diomede, except going

to big Diomede. The distance is about five miles, and in the winter the

ice doesn't freeze up between the island usually. In the summer we

travel in skin boats equipped with outboard motors. They either go to

Siberia or Wales. In July half of the population goes to Nome to spend

the summer for trading. Most of our carving and skin sewing is sold at

Nome. They we return home on the MS North Star in October.

The village is run or governed by the village council. These

councilmen serve three year terms. A long time ago the village was run

by a chief whose name was Kosinga. The old Russian name of the two is-

lands was "Krusenstern". That was when the village was run by a chief.

I don't know why the name was changed to "Diomedes".





There is no wireless communication on the island, except the

radio receiving sets. No airplane comes to Diomede except for some

very special reason, during the winter. The MS North Star brings

groceries for the people on the island from Nome. At the same time

she unloads freight for the school teachers. The Coast Guard cutter

Northland comes in twice during the summer to look after the natives.

In order to improve the village there should be a doctor and

a nurse, and a hospital for the village. They should have a wireless

station and more radios, so the people on the island could have better

contacts with other places and from Outside. In order to have more

recreation there should be a gymnasium and a moving-picture show. There

are lots of other things needed on the island in order to improve the


Arthur Ahkinga (deceased- 1942)


Note: Married Kate Brower, of Barrow, now teaching arts and crafts

at Pt. Lay, for the Office of Indian Affairs; two children.






My real home is at Eagle, which is about seventeen miles from the

Canadian boundary line. The climate there is very different during the

summers and the winters. The fomer are nice and warm, but the winters

are always brisk and cold. 


There are just about two hundred people living in Eagle, counting

both whites and natives. 


To earn their livings, the Indians often dry and sell fish to the

traders for money and food. In the winter some of them trap wild fur-

bearing animals. The rest of us cut wood for the steamers which travel

back and forth between Dawson and Nenana in the summertime. 


For recreation our people play games like running races, boxing.

On the Fourth of July prizes are given to the winners. On every holi-

day we have big dances. 


We travel by dogteams and steamers or on our own boats if we own



The village and town are governed by a U. S. Marshal and some

Councilmen. The Indians have their council, which was formed to help

each other in their government. 


If we want to hear from our neighbors or friends in other towns

and places we often visit them or write to them in order to keep in

contact with them and learn how they are getting along. Letters and

packages are carried by planes, boats, and dog teams, depending on the

time of year. 


If my people wanted to make more money in different ways, they

could put up a salmon cannery some place along the Yukon River and

make plenty of money for themselves and their families. There are lots

of ways they could make more money—putting in movies, starting fur

farms, a library; but what we need most is a good hospital because we

have none in Eagle now. 


Clifford Thompson







Egegik is in Bristol Bay. It isn't a very big place—there's

about 95 people in the winter, but in the summer there are lots more

from other places, who come looking for work. There are two canneries

and they are now building a new one. There is a restaurant which is

run only in the summertime when there are lots of fishermen and cannery

workers around the village. 


We also have a building in the village called the poolroom,

where the men and boys can go to pass away the time playing pool. We

also have lots of dances and show. 


People in Egegik make their living by fishing for the canneries,

working in the canneries, and by trapping in the winter. We travel by

both airplane and boats. 


I don't think Egegik is a very pretty place; there are no trees

around the village although there are just a few way out in the hills.

We all have wooden houses and have almost all the things that the white

people have. There are two stores, one owned by Mr. Evans and the other

a cannery store owned by the Alaska Packers. 


Maggie Strom







Elim is located on Norton Sound, on the coast. Every Spring and

Fall one of the Coast Guard cutters stops there. Each time they bring

a doctor and dentist with them, who examine people. The town is just 100

miles east of Nome. 


Elim is surrounded by trees and mountains. The trees there are

pretty. In the springtime when we go out walking we pick wild flowers

and play games and go any place that we want to go. 


There are about 100 people in Elim. In the summer we go out

to fish in our fish camps. During the fishing season only two or three

families remain in the village. We stay away for two and one-half months.

Of course, some of us go back to the Elim to visit. When we are through

fishing we go berry picking for the winter. We put the berries into big

barrels and into seal pokes. 


Transportation is mainly by dogteams, boats with outboard motors,

and sometimes by plane. 


Most of the people fish for a living, but some go to other

places to work and some sell or trade furs to the stores there. But

most of them send their furs to Sears, Roebuck and Co. 


The people at Elim are going to have a cooperative store soon.

We all hope it works out all right. 


We live in log houses and get our water from the creek nearby

or from the spring which is less than a quarter of a mile away. The

school buildings are at the west end of the village and made up of the

schoolhouse, machine shop, woodshed, and teacher's house. 


The mail boat comes only twice a month in the summer, but there

is no regular mail in the winter. 


Norma Charles

Benjamin Daniels







Flat is located in a long flat valley with

high mountains around it. It is about 300 miles

inland from the Yukon river and eight miles from

the Iditarod river which flows into the Yukon. 


The population in the summer is about 335,

but only 125 in the winter; most of the people go

Outside during the winter and come back in the.

spring. The climate is very hot during the summer;

the temperature in the sun has been known to go up

to 108°; the winter months are much like those at



Most of the people work for wages-- some on

the dredges; some on the draglines, or bulldozers,

pumping stations, hydraulic lines or driving trucks. 


The only recreations they have at Flat are

dancing the year around and skating, skiing and

dogriding in the winter. 


Most of the people travel by plane. In the

summer, when the weather is fine planes come almost

every day, carrying passengers to and from Flat. 


[signed] Keith Housler







Fortuna Ledge, or Marshal [Marshall], as it is gen-

erally called, is located on the Yukon River about one

hundred miles from the mouth or this mighty river. 


The climate is satisfactory for raising

home vegetables in the summer. The average temperature

in the summer months is approximately 60 degrees above,

whereas in the winter the thermometer reaches 20 to thirty



The population varies a great deal due to

the fact that the native people of Marshal have to leave

town to do their hunting and fishing. In summer, prac-

tically all of the native inhabitants settle temporarily

along the Yukon and spend three months of fishing. Some

native men are fortunate enough to get jobs on the Willow

Creek gold mine which is nearly ten miles from Marshal.

Other men and boys cut wood for the steamer "Nenana"

that carries freight and mail from Nenana to the different

towms along the Yukon. In winter, mail is carried by



The three chief sports are: dancing,

skating, and mushing dogs. Swimming is not very common

at this place as there are no ponds or lakes in which to

do so. However, some of the younger residents take the

chance of swimming in the river. 


Traveling is done by boat, dogteam or air-

plane. The latter is used mostly for long distance trav-

eling in winter. The dogs play a great part in carrying

our mail from St. Michael after the Yukon has frozen.


The town is governed by a deputy-marshal

and a commissioner. The marshal takes care of the "bad

people" as far north as Nome and up the river as far as

.Holy Cross, When cases are brought for a trial the com-

missioner takes the judges seat. I am glad to say that

residents from Marshal are seldom brought to jail. 


Close contacts from the outlying districts

are obtained by telegraph, telephone and mail. The daily

news from the states and Foreign countries as brought to

us by radio. 


There are various ways in which the com-

munity could be improved but it would rely upon the in-

dividual families to make these improvements, For in-



stance, the proper disposal of garbage, the proper means

of isolation for contagious diseases and better means

of obtaining sanitary water rather than from the river.

There is one underground water supply but looking at it

from a scientific basis it would not be fit for drink-


[signed] Emery Hunter








Fort Yukon is located, at the widest part

of the Yukon River. It is about 5 miles above the

Arctic Circle. The climate there differs very much in

the winter and summer. The coldest I have known it to

be was 78° below zero. In the summer it goes as high

as 98° in the shade. The average number of people at

Fort Yukon in the summer is about 300 or more, but in

the winter there are only about 150 left as most of the

people are out on traplines.


During the summer the people go to fish

camps. Salmon is the most valuable fish up there.

Some of it is dried in strips and others sliced. The

stores buy a lot of dog salmon from their traders. In

the winter people go trapping. Lynx, marten, beaver,

muskrat and a few other animals are caught. In May

most of the trappers come in and sell their furs. 


Every week we have a dance and a movie.

In the Fall every one is enjoying skating and the first

fall of snow. On the holidays there is always a big

time. A certain group of people give what is known as

a "potlatch". 


People travel from one place to another by

boats in the summer and by planes and dog teams in the



The village is governed by a deputy marshal

and a judge. If anything goes wrong the marshal takes

it up and they go to the judge. If it is too ser-

ious they have court and it is usually taken to Fair-



We hear from people from other villages

by mail which is carried from one place to another by

boats in the summer and in the winter we have planes

or dog teams to carry it. Most of the white people

have radios and some of the natives. 


Some ways that the village could be im-

proved are to build a small salmon cannery. The homes

in the village could be improved a lot. The children

should have places to stay while they're going to

school and their parents go on traplines. I think a few

of these changes could be made and we would have a nice








The small rather thickly populated town

of Ft. Yukon is situated on the Yukon River. It faces

the river and is flat and unprotected from wind due to

the mountainless scenery. The winter is extremely dry

and cold but undaunted the majority of the male pop-

ulace goes ahead with the fur trapping, hunting, wood-

cutting and hauling. The young people in the meantime

attend school. 


When Spring comes most of the womenfolk

go out on ratting trips and after a large, catch the

rats are skinned, the skin treated and sold and, this

brings in a good sum or money or else traded for food

and such supplies. The skins are bought by white men. 


Only recently have gardens been developed

and these thrive nicely during the hot summers. The

products from these are used by the household. Flowers

have not been considered quite as much yet. 


Fall finds the younger people going to

school and the jamority of the older people at the

fish camps There fish are caught and dried. Bales of

fish are brought to town and sold or kept for dogs dur-

ing the winter season. 


Every weekend rain or shine finds the

people enjoying a show or a dance. The other diversions

Include swimming, berry picking and boat riding during,

the summer. Winter and fall skating, snow shoeing and

hunting predominate. 


Many families own a motor boat, canoes and

dogs. It is in these that they travel about as they

please can often carry letters and messages which are

very helpful to out of the way places. Airplanes are

not uncommon in transportation. The weekly steamer dur-

ing the summer season gives access to the outside. 


Whatever trouble that may arise in town is

attended to by the marshal and the judge.


Recently radios have been installed in a

few places and are quite a subject of interest. I know

our place could be improved by constructing walks and

larger sized houses.










Fort Yukon is located on the Yukon

River, eight miles above the Arctic Circle and has

a population or about three hundred people. 


In winter it gets very cold. One winter

it got as cold as 70 below zero, but in summer it

gets very warm at times. 


In the winter the people go out trapping

for lynx, marten, foxes, and beaver. Early in the

spring they make their fish wheels, then about the

first of June they all leave for their fish camps.

The kind of fish they catch the most of is salmon. 


They have a show house where the people

can go any night to see a show. A big dance hall and a

large ball field and a place where we play basketball

are also there. 


The people travel mostly by small

boats or by canoes in summer. A river steamer comes

down the river once a week and goes back the next

week. In winter all their traveling is done by dog



The village is governed by the Chief or

Council, and they help the people in a lot of their

troubles. Also they have a marshal so he keeps peace

among the people and they also have a commissioner. 


In winter the mail is brought once a week

by dog team from Circle to Fort Yukon and from Fair-

banks to Fort Yukon by plane. In summer the steamer

Yukon makes weekly trips from Dawson to Nenana. 


Some of the ways we could change our

community are having or making better places to

dispose of our garbage, and making our homes more at-

tractive, and having a library.







Fort Yukon is situated on the northern-

most point of the Yukon River, where the Porcupine River

meets the Yukon. The River is supposed to be about 10

miles across but we can only see to the next island

which is about 5 miles. The country surrounding the

town is flat, with not even a hill in sight for miles. 


The climate is extreme in the winter and the

summers are very mild. Thethermometer sometimes reaches

78°. But every one is bundled up so in parkas, boots on

and fur mittens in the winter that they don't mind the

cold at all. Everybody enjoys swimming almost every

day in summer, it is so warm. 


There is a great variety in the kinds of

people that make up the population of the town. The

Indians make up the larger portion of it. There are

also many whites, and a few Eskimos. Then there is the

mixture of white and Indian blood, the half breeds and

the quarter-breeds. All in all the population amounts

to about 500. In summer of course there are more

people due to the fact that Fort Yukon is the place

where all trapper’s and traders from the outlying

villages and towns come with their furs to be either

sold or shipped outside. 


Trapping is the main way of making a

living. In the fall of the year the trappers take

with them enough supplies for the winter, and leave

the town not to return until spring unless necessary

supplies are needed. Both the whites and natives of

the town make a living by trapping. During the summer

enough fish are caught for a family for winter. This

fish is dried, of course. September is the month when

the men get together and go on their annual caribou

Hunt. The caribou that they get are usually given to

the older folks who can't go out and hunt, and also

used for their own families. All the trading stores are

owned by the whites. Fort Yukon also boasts a very good

hospital, with 4 nurses and a doctor, a sanatarium for

TB patients and everything else a good-sized hospital

has. This hospital also serves the surrounding country

as far up the river as Eagle, and as far down the river

as Rampart. The Northern Commercial Company owns the

wireless station, where the daily weather reports are

sent and messages received from Fairbanks.


Dancing is the favorite sport of all the

younger people of the village and. for the old folks, too.





The older folks have their old-fashioned jigs and square

dances. Every week there is a movie shown. These

movies Were all silent until recently a talking machine

has been installed. There are many other sports that

are enjoyed such as skating, swimming, and dog team

riding. During holidays or after a caribou hunt we

sometimes have a big potlatch, to which everyone comes

and eats their fill. It is during Christmas and New

Years that this feasting is carried on for about two

weeks. To get to the nearest us village, one can go in

launches or canoes or in the winter by dog-teams. In

the summer, there are the weekly river steamers that

make traveling easier. Planes come over quite often

from Fairbanks with mail and passengers or tourists. 


Our town doesn't seen to be complete with-

out our marshall and jail, not meaning of course that

our people are rough and rowdy but for other pur-

poses too. When a native has done something wrong the

village Council usually takes it up first and then turns

him over to the judge to settle. The natives have also

a chief who is at the head of the Council. 


Most of the town's homes that can afford

a radio, have one. This is one way of keeping up

with the outside. During the winter we get weekly

mail by dog-teams and also by plane. In summer the

riv er steamers bring mail, freight and passengers.

Just about all summer long there is heavy tourist traf-

fic because of the many tourist that want to get to

Fort Yukon to see the midnight sun. Of course one can

see the sun at other points along the river but Ft.

Yukon is about 7 or 8 miles above the Arctic Circle

and that makes it more exciting for the tourists. Other

attractions are the church and it's old graveyards, where

the dead, of the Hudson Bay expedition,. Which first

discovered the town, are buried. 


We also have at Ft. Yukon, a mission, which

is supported by the churches. This happened to be the

place where I lived a while before I came here. 


One way in which I think our village could

be improved is by building more attractive homes, altho

the people seem to be quite satisfied with their small

log cabins even if some are not attractive. A better

means of disposing of garbage and a better water supply

are truly improvements that should be had. Everyone

dumps their garbage into the river and everyone gets

his water from the river, too. Maybe a couple of wells

built in the village would help. 

[signed] Martha Carlo






My home is on the Yukon Fiver. It's not such a very big place-

only about seventeen houses and a little less than a hundred people there. 


In the winter time we usually fish with nets under the ice, but

in the summer we fish with fishwheels. Of course we go out trapping for

furs and go hunting for game. 


Galena just looks like a fish camp to most people, but just the

same we have lots of fun; dances of course whenever people cone from a-

nother place to celebrate. We have lots of visitors from Nulato and from

Koyukuk. Of course we have no cars or trucks, so they come by boat in

the summer or by dogteam in the winter. We do not have any cows, horses,

pigs or chickens.


We play baseball and handball, but the thing I like best to do

is go dogteam riding in the wintertimes. Sometimes we go out riding with

a dogteam, boys and girls mixed; then sometimes the boys would throw

the girls in the snow; the girls would get cold so we'd wrap them all up

in blankets. 


We have no real government at Galena, but there is a Deputy

U. S. Marshal not far away in case anything serious happens. 


Mary Nollner







Haycock is a small town of less than one hun-

dred people. It is located near the Koyuk River

on Dime Creek, a tributary. It is built on the

side of a hill. Dime Creek runs thru the place

where the dredge works; and, of course, there are

trees all around. In the winter it sometimes

gets over forty degrees below zero. 


For amusements we ski, skate, swim, coast,

dance, play baseball, lap ball and other outdoor

and indoor amusements. 


For a living most or the people mine and a

few trap. Some cut wood for the miners, the

school and for some other people. W get mail

by planes, dogteams and boats. The planes land

at Landing, a small place seven miles from Hay-

cock, where the boats come in the summer time.

From Landing the mail is carried to Haycock by

dogteam. In the summer it is carried by the

tractors. People travel by dogteams, boats and

planes. Two fellows even came from Nome last

winter on skis. 


There is a radio station at Koyuk, fourteen

miles from Landing where people can send mes-

sages in cases of emergency.

[signed] Harry Beltz






My home which is located on Kodiak Island has a

population of about 200. The climate is quite favorable down there

and in the summertime the weather is quite warm while the winters are

very mild. 


In the summertime the men go fishing and sell the fish

to some cannery. After the summer season is over they go fishing for

their own use for winter. They dry, smoke, or salt the fish for their

own use for their families. In the winter time they hunt for fox and

ermine for their fur, for which they get quite a reasonable price when

they sell them. 


They do not have much in the way of recreation; they

have dances and silent pictures, of course, and the little children a-

muse themselves by playing games out doors and also some indoor games.

All the traveling is done by boats. 


The village is governed by the teacher there; he also

has to take care of the people that are sick. 


Some people who can afford to have radios have them

which helps the people to come in contact with other towns, villages,

and outside. Mail also helps to hear from other people. 








My home is just a little town and the houses are scattered here

and there. There are three stores which aren't very big, but big enough

for Kenai. 


Kenai is located at the mouth of the river of the same name.

On one side of the river is our fish cannery and on the other side is the

little town. The population is about 350, and it is about 100 miles from



Sometimes in the middle of the summer there are very hot days,

but most of the time it just rains. Once in a while we have terrible

thunder storms. 


For recreation in the summer the people dance, swim and listen

to their radios. In. winter we go skating, dancing and have parties at

our homes. 


Most of the men go fishing in the summer. Some make over nine

hundred dollars fishing, but some don't make that much. In the winter

they go hunting and trapping and sell their furs to the stores. That's

the way most of the people make their living. 


On Christmas the people usually celebrate all day. The night.

before Christmas the school children give a program and then after that

there's a bundle of presents for everyone. Then we have a big dance.

We celebrate New Year's Eve by shooting off guns at midnight, and on the

Fourth of July we shoot off firecrackers all day. 


Kenai is governed by a deputy Marshal. Every once in a while

a game warden comes around to check up on us, too. 


Helen Dolchok






My home is in Kenai, Alaska. In Kenai I live in a three room

house; there are two rooms downstairs, and one bedroom upstairs. The

village is located hair way up Cook Inlet on the southeastern side. The

population is about 350. 


A long time ago there was a little village up the Kenai River

quite a way called Skitook where the people used to live before and later

they moved down the river towards the mouth and named the place Kenai. 


In the summer most of the people go fishing. There is law

that you're not supposed to fish in any river or creek in which fish go

to spawn. There is a limit from the river to the location of the fish-

ing grounds. The fishermen get 21’ for good fish and 4½’ for poor fish.

Fishing is a good trade for some people make as much as $2000 in one

season fishing. 


For recreation in Kenai the people dance or they go on hunting

trips up the Kenai River. The methods of travel are by boat and plane

in the summer and by plane and dogteam in the winter. 


We have regular mail service and also have a radio telephone in

the village for communication with other places. 


The place is governed by a U. S. Deputy Marshal. 


Emil Dolchok






King Cove is a small town located on a long

piece of level land with water on three sides and

two main channels; one on the South and the other

on the East. The climate is very poor since it

rains practically every day. In winter it gets

only as cold as 10 or 12 above zero. In summer

it often gets up around 60 or 70 above. 


There are about 80 people in King Cove in the

winter, but in the summer a crew of 100 whites

and 100 Chinamen come up to work in the fish

cannery. Most of the people work, and most of

them have little boats with which to travel

from place to place. 


There is no government in the place. There

are only bosses for the cannery and the people

who work there. Of course, if things get too

bad, we have to send for a marshal from a neigh-

boring village. 


There are about 20 radio sets in the village-

almost one for every house; and a few of the

people have telephones. We receive our mail

only once a month from the steamer which connects

at Seward with the steamer from Outside. 


Well, King Cove may be a good place for some

people but I certainly don't like it.

[signed] Edward Mack






Kivalina is located on a little is-

land surround, by the ocean and a lake. The

climate is very cold in the winter—down to

60 below in the winter around January; it

never seems to get so warm there as it does

at Eklutna. 


In the fall there are about 150

people in the village but in the spring only

about 30, for that is the time when the

people scatter along the coast to hunt seals.

We do not bother about fishing except in the

Fall when we catch trout; fishing for them lasts

about a month. 


Trapping is the most important way

of earning a living: in the winter they trap

red and white foxes and a little for wolves.

No other fur-bearing animals are seen except

weasels. The fox skins are usually sold to the

local traders. 


The recreations of the Eskimos are

native dancing, dogteam racing, foot races,

snow shoe races, wrestling, playing tricks on

each other. These tricks are really ways of

showing skill in athletics and stunts. 


Travel is mostly done by dogteam

in the winter and boats in the summer. In

summer when the men are inland where they are

rounding up the reindeer, they have to walk

on foot for miles. 


The village is governed by the

Civic Club and the councilmen; they are doing

their best to keep everything in good shape. 


The natives are always trying hard

to make their living and they seldom think of

buying a radio, but we do have one in the

village. The village is growing and there

may be more radios in the next few years.

[signed] Adolph Jones






Our village is located on kind of an island; it has

a lagoon right back of it which is about 13 miles long, and our vil-

lage has rivers on each end. 


In winter time, the climate is very very cold. The

people all use fur clothes and the temperature goes down to 40° to

60° below zero. But in summertime the weather is warm, too, and the

temperature goes up quite high. 


The number of people at our village is approximately



In summertime our people fish with nets and also seine

with long line of net in the rivers. In winter they hook fish from the

ice. In the first place, they make a hole in the ice and then they

put their hook in and wait until they have some luck and get a bite. 


We trap only in the wintertime because the fur is so

good then. They also hunt seals and butcher reindeer. Otherwise in

summertime they go to Kotzebue or further South for work of different

kinds in order to make their living. 


The recreations they have at home are Eskimo games and

dancing in both the Eskimo and American ways. 


In the summer they travel in summer mostly by umiaks

or skin boats while in the winter they travel mostly by dogteams. 


Our village is governed by councilmen; they vote one

person to be chief and the councilmen meet at certain times when any-

thing comes up to attend to. 


Up North the mail comes by dog team from other villages

The Outside mail comes by ships or on mail boats. They go up as far as

Kotzebue. At our village the airplanes don't come very often. The

most of the planes come 10 our village from Kotzebue or further South.

There are not many boats in our village. 


I think there's only one radio in our village and that

belongs to the school teachers and that is the only way we get our

news from other places. 


At our village the houses are mostly made of sod framed

with driftwood. There are a few lumber houses, of course, but very



There’s not even one truck or car and no large boats and but few gas or motor boats.



Our village has the largest herd of reindeer and the

largest reindeer company in Alaska even tho it is so small. And the

people are as happy as other places and really very smart. 

[signed] James Smith






My home is far up north about seventy-five miles above

Kotzebue and is on the coast of the Bering Sea about forty-five miles

below Cape Thompson. 


The population of Kivalina consists of about 150

people. It gets very cold in the winter but it is warm in the summer.

It gets so cold in the winter that the people wear fur parkas and fur



The people do most of their fishing in the fall. The

village is very small but it owns quite a lot of reindeer. Toward fall

the reindeer herders go out in the mountains and round up the herds

of reindeer and corral them. They then mark them and chase them back

in the mountains. When the Motor Ship North Star goes by they round up

some of the herds and butcher some and send them to Seattle. The last

year before I came to school they butchered 1,070 reindeer to send

South to Seattle. The people start trapping on the first of November

and quit at the end of April. 


For recreation the people at home skate, play ball,

dance, and other things of the sort. They travel mostly by dogteams

and by boats. The village is governed by seven councilmen.

The people of the village are in contact with other

villages by mail. This place is really a little island with the lagoon

in the back and the sea in front with one inlet from the sea and one

outlet from the lagoon. 


I think if the people had a cannery for reindeer meat,

it would be better for the village.

[signed] Walter Wilson









If you were looking for Kokrines you would look between Ruby

and Tanana. There are hills almost all around it. The town itself is

built on a big hill. It is about 402 miles from Eklutna. 


The temperature is sometimes very hot, but if it is there is

always a little breeze from the hills to cool it off. Sometimes in the

winter the temperature goes way down to 60° below or lower, but not very

often. The winds blow very hard in March and the first partoof April.

The ice starts running about the middle of September, and freezes in Oc-

tober. Around, the last part of October there is no danger of falling

thru the ice but before then it isn't vary safe to travel at night. The

snow gets very high and thick and takes a long time to melt. 


There are about 98 people in Kokrines. They cut wood for the

steamboats, traders, school , and Northern Commercial Company down at

Ruby. They sell dried fish, meat, all kinds of berries, moccasins, boots,

and many other things to earn money. 


We dance, have parties, play ball, play cards, and have plays

given by the children. They travel by canoe, motor boats, steamers,

plane and in winter by dogteam. They have one telephone in the store

that is connected with Ruby. 


The village has a chief and some of the men to help him, but

if things get too bad, they can go down to Ruby where there is a U. S.

Deputy Marshal. 


Frances Gonzales







Kotzebue is located above the Arctic Circle

about 125 miles north or Nome. The thermometer rises to

about 60° in summer and in winter it is about 4:0° below.

Snow piles up about 20 feet in drifts. There is a pop-

ulation of about 400 people. In the summer people from

the Noatak and Kobuk Rivers coming down to fish set up

about a mile of tents, increasing the population consider-



One of the chief means of making a living

is fishing; it is also a sport. In winter a hole is

made thru the ice and a line is cast thru it. A large

pile of fish is caught in an hour when a lot of fish are

running. Another way of fishing in winter is casting a

net under the ice. Two holes are made about 30 feet

apart. A net is drawn down one hole and is anchored in

the other. Salmon fishing is common in summer. A lot

of hunting and trapping is done in the winter as soon as

the season is opened, quite a few foxes are caught. A

bunch of men go seal-hunting in the Spring. The meat is

dried and stored in seal oil. 


Baseball is a favorite sport. A lot of

skiing and skating is done. On moonlit nights more than

50 skaters are out. There is a small show house where a

silent picture is shown once a week. Afterwards there is

a dance. 


Dog-teams are the most important means of

travel in winter; boats are in summer. There are a couple

of trucks--one owned by the Ferguson Company, which also

owns a motorcycle and 2 or 3 airplanes. These planes car-

ry mail between Nome and Kotzebue. 


The town is governed by a marshal who takes

care of the tough characters of that town. There is a

small jailhouse in which drunks are kept for about a week. 


There are a few radios by which we hear

news from the outside. Airplanes and dogteams carry mail

to and from the other towns and villages. 


The natives could be more careful about

their garbage. Instead of dumping it behind their houses

or by the street they should take it way out on the ice

where it will be taken away at breakup time. Playgrounds

could be erected.

[signed] Bertha Schaeffer







Koyuk is located near Norton Sound. Part of

the village is located on the side of the hill which

is covered with trees, and part of it is nearer the



Most of the people herd reindeer and fish

for a living. A few of them work for the miners dur-

ing the summer. 


The coldest it ever gets is about sixty below

in winter, but it is usually only between thirty or

forty below. In summer the hottest it ever got in

the sun was 116 above, but it is usually much cooler

than that. 


The population is about 100. Nearly every

family has a dog team. With a team they can travel

almost any place in the winter. In the summer they

do all their travelling in boats.

Koyuk is governed by a Mayor who is elected

by the people of the village. There are also a few

other elected officers who manage affairs of the vil-



There is a dogteam mail-carrier who goes

from place to place with freight and mail. He usu-

ally goes thru Koyuk twice a week. The plane trav-

elling between Fairbanks and Nome also carries mail

and usually lands at Koyuk twice a week. The Pac-

ific Alaska airways has put up a wireless station

in the village to aid their flyers, since that com-

pany has the mail contract.

[signed] Henry Adams






My home is near the middle part of the Yukon and on the mouth

of the Koyukuk River. It is very cold in the winder and moderately

warm in the summer. In the village there are about 150 people. 


Most of the people at home fish in the summer and trap in the

winter. In summer when all the people come from trapping they have

good times every night such as dancing, the native type, parties,

potlatches, etc. In winter there isn't so much recreation as in

summer and fall. 


The most important way of travel at home is by dog teams in win-

ter and steam and gasboats in summer. Every winter there is aman

with a team of about 15 dogs who goes up and down the Yukon river and

carries the mail from all points. It is a very dangerous job. 


In summer time we contact people with mail, telephone, river

boats and in winter with dog teams. There is a Signal Corps station

about 15 miles down river and it is used daily to bring weather re-

ports and messages to Anchorage to broadcast. It was out of order

last spring when the river flooded the whole town.

[signed] Gilbert Andrews







My home town is located on the Kobuk River. In winter time it gets

pretty cold but in summer it is mild. 


The population of our village is approximately three hundred. 


The people fish for grayling, white fish in the summer and about the

month of August they fish for salmon until freeze up. 


In winter time they hunt red, white, blue, cross and silver foxes.


They trap all winter until March, and after March they trap for muskrats.

The native mine for gold also. 


They play baseball, foot ball, skating, skiing, dancing, and a whole

lot of games. They also go to shows once a week. 


They travel by dog team in the winter and by gas boats in the summer.

We get our mail by plane in the winter time and in summer by gas boats. 


They are very friendly with each other. They trade for things they

don’t have. 


My home town people are not very civilized as they should be. I think

there is lot of ways that they can improve. For instance: 


They need more gas boats, build a cannery, more attractive homes,

Doctors and Nurses, fur farms and vetter ways of preparing food for

both winter use and summer. If they can allord to buy radios, I

should think it would be a good thing to do. But the thing is that

they would have a rather difficult time getting electricity. They

also need knowledge of crafts. If they all combine as one I think

they wouldn't have much difficulties in getting there little village

better than the rest. 

[signed] Clarence Aden







Hot Springs is situated on a slough of one

of the tributaries of the Tanana River, above the

settlement of Tanana. The steamers stop at the dock

which is 5 miles out of town; there is only a ware-

house at the dock. 


The climate there is very favorable; it is

warm in the summer, and very cold in the winter. The

population is about 100, which makes it quite crowded

since it is only a small village. 


The people trap foxes, mink, coyotes, weasels,

otter, lynx, and wolverine. They hunt rabbits, moun-

tain sheep, moose, caribou, muskrats, porcupine, ptar-

migan, spruce chickens, ducks, geese, and cranes. 



Fishing is another great industry; they fish

for different kinds of salmon: kings, silvers, and

chums; also whitefish, grayling, and lush. 


Farming is another occupation. One of the

chief occupations of the people is the mining of gold.

The people travel from place to place by dog,

teams in winter and gas boats in summer, horses and

by automobiles. 


The only government of the village is han-

dled by the U. S. Commissioner. 


There is one store at Hot Springs, owned and

operated by the Northern Commercial Company, but there

is also a roadhouse there. 


For recreation the people skate, dance, swim,

ski and go picnicing and for dog team rides. Mail

comes twice a month in the summer by the steamer, and

in winter it is brought by dogteam and airplanes. 


The people live in log cabins, which are very

cosy in the winter time. Almost every family has a



Hot Springs was named and is noted for its

warm water spring and anyone can bring their tubs and

washboards and wash their clothes at the spring. 

[signed] Irene Westerlund






There are about six hundred Indians in

the progressive Alaskan town of Metlakatla,

which has running water in every Indian home,

electric street lights, sewers, a large salmon

cannery, the largest town hall in Alaska, and a

fifty-piece band or orchestra, with new, modern

instruments. The Indians also own and operate

a sawmill and a boatbuilding establishment. The

chief source of income is the salmon industry. 


The Metlakatla colony on Annette Island,

Alaska, possesses a unique history. In 1856

William Duncan, a young Englishman, came to Fort

Simpson, British Columbia, as a boy missionary

of the Established Church of England, Missionary

Society of London. After five years at Fort

Simpson he founded an Indian village near there

which was called Metlakatla, and converted a-

bout one thousand Indians to Christianity. He

taught then self-government, to construct suit-

able log houses, thrift, morality, and the ways

of the white men. 


The community prospered. In the course

of years, however, friction developed between

Mr. Duncan and certain officials of the church

and of the Government. This trouble began about

1880. As a result, Mr. Duncan and the Indians

decided to found another home elsewhere, and fi-

nally chose Annette Island, Alaska, as a desir-

able site for their new colony. 


Mr. Duncan visited Washington, D. C. and

interested Government officials and members of

Congress in this work among the Indians and their

desire to migrate to Alaska. By Act of Congress,

approved March 5, 1891, Annette Islands were

set apart as a reservation for the use of the

Metlakatla Indians and such other Alaska natives

as might join them. 


The colony has prospered. It is a self-

governing community, operating under Rules and

Regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the

Interior, January 28, 1915, with a Town Council 





and town officials elected by popular vote. 


The Office of Indian Affairs conducts a

school at Metlakatla which is its largest day

school in Alaska. The salmon cannery is leased

to a commercial operator, under a contract which

assures a large share of the profits to the In-

dians for community welfare and improvements.

During the last few years this has approximated

$40,000 a year. People who visit Metlakatla for

the first time invariably express surprise at the

advance in civilization which has been made for

these Indians in a comparatively short period of



The Natives of Alaska have retained, tho

in modified form, the essentials of the arts

and crafts of their forefathers. In Southeastern

Alaska the men, through expressive carvings,

sometimes bold, sometimes delicate, in wood,

slate and bone, testify to a sensitive interpre-

tation of the mythology of the Tlingits and

Haidas, rich in totemic symbolism. 


Baskets are likewise produced by many

Eskimo villages. But the Eskimos are better

represented in the art field by carvings in

ivory, executed with fidelity to a style set

centuries ago by a cultural era now passed, a

style often compared with the impressionistic,

palaeolithic drawings of the caves of Southern


D. E. Thomas 


(From Indians at Work---July 1, 1935)







The location of my home is on the north

side of Nunivak Island. It is beside a small river or

lagoon. The weather is not so cold as farther north,

but sometimes it was 20° below zero when it was the

coldest. There are only about 65 people. 


In summer we fish for codfish, salmon, and

some trout. We hunt, too, in the fall, for seals when

our fishing is over. In winter those men and boys who

are not in school hunt and trap foxes. 


The people have Eskimo dances almost every

month. In the winter they play Eskimo football, too.

They travel mostly in kayaks, but sometimes

when they have enough walrus skins they make umiaks

or skinboats. The use dogteams in the winter.

The village has no commissioner or any other

Form of government, so the headman of the village

rules the people with the aid of the teacher. 


We have radios that gives us news as well as

music. In the winter we have no visitors from the

mainland, and we have to wait until the ice melts in

the spring before we can get any mail. The only way

the mail is brought is by Coast Guard cutters and other

boats. The traders travel regularly in the summer,

trading merchandise for baskets, foxes, and ivory car-


[Signed] Arthur Nagozuk





Neelik is a small village about sixty

miles north of Selawik. It is located at the mouth

of a small slough on the Selawik river.

In the summer tine, the temperatures av-

erage from sixty to seventy degrees above zero. Only

in rare instances has it ever reached eighty degrees

above zero. In general, the climate at Neelik is very

moderate. In winter the temperature almost never goes

below sixty degrees below zero and never goes above

twenty above. It usually ranges from thirty to fifty



Unlike most towns, Neelik has more people

in winter than in summer. In winter there are about

15 families at Neelik, but in the Spring most of them

go away to their various fish and muskrat camps and stay

away all summer. In winter the men go out hunting and

trapping foxes, mink, wolves, land otter, and once in

a while some hunter gets a lynx, which they trade to the

fur buyers and traders. In addition to that, they kill

reindeer, rabbits, ptarmigans, geese, etc. Also, in

summer, the people catch fish which they dry for winter



During the latter part of August, all the

women and children go out into the hills to pick blue-

berries, cranberries, salmonberries and currants. They

store these berries away in barrels and seal-skin pokes

for winter use. They also pick wild rhubarb in July,

which they cook and store away in barrels, also for

use during the winter. 


As there is no school at Neelik, the boys

and girls have a lot of time to themselves. So when-

ever there is no work to do, they all hitch up their

dog teams and go out riding, play football or baseball.

If the weather is too stormy to be out of doors, they

all gather at one house and play cards, tell stories,

or dance to the phonograph, the guitar and sometimes

when they happen to meet at our home, to the radio.

There are also two favorite out of door sports that I

almost forgot to mention: skiing and skating.. As there

is a lot of snow up there, almost every boy and girl

has a pair of skiis, which they make out of birch wood. 


As Neelik is only a small settlement,

there is no marshal or even a school teacher there, so,

whenever the natives are in trouble, they go to the

trader and he does whatever he can do for them.




The cheapest and most common means of

travel above the Arctic Circle in winter is by dog

team, and for the more well-to-do, airplanes. In

summer everybody travels by boats, mostly gasboats.

The only way the people at Neelik can

come in contact with people from the outside places,

in winter, is by radio, and thru the mail that an

airplane brings once a month. In summer, however, as

the boats run up and down the river all the time,

you can go down to Kotzebue, about 180 miles away, and

back again in a week. 

Since there are quite a few families with

children that are of school age, I think that there

should be a school there. 





Noatak village is located on the high

banks of the Noatak River in the interior from Kot-

zebue Sound. It is many miles north of the Arctic

Circle. The village itself is encircled, with many

trees and at the back of it there is a great lake. 


In the winter it is quite cold and in

summer it is comfortable. In the coldest days of the

winter the temperature is some around 80Ί below zero.

Thus the parkas and mukluks made of skin are warm. In

summer an ordinary kind of clothes like we have here

now is used.


The population of the village at present

is at least around 200, but I am not sure. 


In summer a lot of fishing for all sorts

of fish is done and they are stored for winter use

mostly while some of it is sold. Of course there are

many different kinds of hunting that the people do,

such as muskrat hunting and selling of the furs, and

also seal hunting. The skins and the oil from the

seals are sold and also the skin is made into clothing.

The meat is kept for food. In winter most people trap

for foxes, wolves, minks, wolverine, ermine, etc. The

foods that are Most used by people are such as rein-

deer meat, fish, caribou meat, all kinds of wild

berries, rabbits, ducks, and once in a while mountain

sheep and goat. There is very little growing of vege-



The people enjoy all sorts of interesting

native games such as native stunts, dances, football,

baseball, and sometimes parties for the school children. 


The traveling in summer is mostly by boats

and in winter by dog teams. 


The village is governed by the school

teachers and village council. When the people need help

they usually go to the teachers for aid. 


To make contact with people from other places : mail

is brought in by either boats in summer or by dog teams

in winter and also by radio. 


Some ways that the village could be im-

proved is by building up more attractive home. Or course

most people are quite satisfied with their log cabins

which are very cozy and loved by the family. One could
also build a fur farm there.




There is a fur farm at the village but it is owned by

the whites. There are many ways that thev village can

be improved although it is a Very small village.

[Signed] Grace Barger (Stevens)






My home is located near the Bering

Sea and has a little river near it called the

Snake River. There are a few hills nearby,

and mountains not far away, with tundra dotted

with lakes and ponds in between. 


The climate there is almost like

Eklutna except that it doesn't rain so much

and is much colder in the winter. The people

who live in Nome wear parkas, jackets, coats,

mukluks and heavy winter clothing. 


In the winter Nome has a population

of about 700, but in the summer there are

1,000 or more. The people fish, trap, hunt,

or mine. They fish in the summer along the

beach and rivers; they mine along the beach;

in the winter they hunt seals and ptarmigan

and trap foxes and rabbits; ducks and geese

are shot both in the spring and the fall; and

both walrus and seals are hunted in the Spring. 


For recreation we have dances and

games. White people have their dances where

they dance in their own way, while we Eskimos

have our own dances for recreation. 


Travel is done by planes, steamers,

motor boats, skin boats, dogteams and skiffs. 


The town is run by a city council

which takes care of most of its government. 


There is a postoffice at Nome; a

landing-field for planes; and a radio sta-

tion. The mail is carried by dogteams and

planes in the winter, by planes and boats in

the summer. 






My home is located on a hill by the Kobuk

Rivor; it is half surrounded by the river and has many

beautiful spruce trees around the village. On its

north side, the mountains are about 19 miles away and

on its south side, about 22 miles. The village has

two streets; the upper one is called Spruce Street and.

the lower is called Birch Street. 


The climate from November until April is

usually cold. In the summer, however, it is hot, from

70 to 90 degrees. In a year the ice in the river freeze s

4 or 5 feet deep and 2 or 3 feet of snow covers the



In the winter the people work and hunt for

a living. The women cook, make mukluks, parkas and

mittens. They use wood for fuel instead of coal. In

the Spring nearly all the people scatter out for their

muskrat camps and hunt for the next three months. In

summer they move to their fishing camps and fish for

smelts, sheafish, white fish, pickerel, mudsharks, trout

and salmon. The most important fish are the salmon and

the whitefish; A bundle of these fish contains 25 sal-

mon and a bundle costs about $4.50. There are 8 white-

fish in one string; one bundle contains 20 strings.

Its cost is now about $6.75. They sell these to the

traders and get what they need in exchange. Most of

the time the women pick berries and store them away for

the winter. 


On Thanksgiving they have a great feast.

Before they eat they have dog races, root races, and a

football game. At 4:00 p.m. they come to the feast

at the Friend's Church and stay until 9 o'clock. Then

the men and big boys go the native store and play

Eskimo games all night. On Christmas they have pro-

grams, feasting, racing and play all kinds of Eskimo

and white games until New Years. 


In the winter time the people travel by dog

teams. Some richer people travel by planes. In the

summer they travel by motor boats and rowboats. In

the fall some of the people travel on their skate s. 


The village is governed by councilmen; they

also have a judge, two marshals, and a secretary. No

gambling or other bad things are done in this village.

Every spring the village must be cleaned up.




Some people have radios in their homes and

they hear the news from other places. In winter time

the planes are used to carry the mail; in summer boats

are used. There is no postoffice in the village so the

mail is handed, out by the teachers: mail usually comes

once a month. 


There is no doctor or nurse in the village

so the teachers see that the people get along. Most of

the people go down to Kotzebue to see the doctor. This h

is 60 miles from Noorvik. The population of the vil-

lage is 185.

[Signed] Louis Kagoona 





Nulato is eighteen miles from the

mouth of the Koyukuk River. The climate is

mild and warn with a little rain in the sum-

mer and extremely cold around the middle of

winter with about 15 inches of rain during

January. There are about 200 people in the



The present village of Nulato is

not in the same place as before the famous

Nulato massacre took place when the Koyukuk

Indians wiped out the village. The old vil-

lage was about a mile below where it is now.

Most of the people were killd and their houses

were burned down; what few were left lived

around the Koyukuk mountain which was their

trapping ground and winter camp ground. They

finally settled ton the present site of Nulato. 


Most of the boys of the village

either work on the river boats or go freigh-

ting to the Koyukuk mine which is turning out

good lately. There is also a sawmill there where

some of the people work. 


Other people of the village chop

cordwood for the three trading posts or fish

during the summer with nets or fishwheels.

They often use fishtraps in the winter. 


During the winter, December 25, is

a day set aside every year by the people for

their dances and the entertainments given by

the school children. March 17th is also a day

of recreation, especially for dog races, snow-

shoe races, and games. The most of the people

between Kaltag and Galena select good runners

and teams and try them out to see who will win.

July 4th is also a day of races, but different

kinds than in the winter; the one-man canoe

races for 2 miles; boat races with 4-6 men in

each boat; footraces; baseball games. Nearly

every Sunday they play baseball, handball, or





Transportation is by gasboats on the

river in the summer and dogteams in the winter.

For communication there is a telephone between

Koyukuk and Unalakleet and also a Signal Corps



The head of the government of the

village is called the Chief and he has a council

to help him talk over matters about dances,

and other things of more importance. A new

chief is elected every four years. 

[Signed] Donald Stickman






My home is at Nunapitchuk, located on the

west side of the Kuskokwim Rive r. It is about 40 or

50 miles from Bethel by the river and about 28 miles

by land. It is on one of the tributaries of the Kus-

kokwim, called Johnson Slough. The place is nothing

but tundra and is very swampy and we can see for miles

around us because there are no trees except willows

about 3 feet high. 


The climate is not very satisfactory during

the fall for it rains continually every week until

about the middle of January. In the winter it does not

get very cold except that it blows and drifts snow. Dur-

ing the summer months the weather is very favorable.

The sun shines almost every day. 


The population of the village is 120 or a

few more. Most of the people live in mud igloos for

there are very few who live in log cabins, it is very

hard to get timber as far as the village; every summer

they go up to the Kuskokwim and cut logs for the win-

ter use and then drift then down stream. 


During the summer the people all go down

to the Kuskokwim and fish for king salmon. Then they

go on up to the tundra in August to put up as many

berries in barrels for winter use as possible. In the

fall they fish for whitefish and black fish with dip

nets and fish traps. During the fur season they trap

for red and white fox, mink, and beaver. 


For recreation in the fall they skate and in

winter they play football and baseball. In the even-

ings, they have their native dances which are very in- n

teresting to see, for even the five-or six-year olds

do the dances just as well as the grownups. 


In the winter they travel by dogteams,

Which they use for going from one place to another and

Get getting their wood. During the summer they go by

rowboats and mostly by kyaks [kayaks]. 


The teacher has just been explaining to the h

men how to organize a council this fall (1937). When

the teacher first got there he found they did not

know the difference between yes and no because they had

never been to school before and they talked nothing but





The mail is very irregular at Nunapitchuk

for the planes do not go there. In the winter they

take the mail up whenever they go to Bethel by dog

team. In the summer they go by boats. Only the

teachers and the traders have radios which help them

a great deal for they can hear the news every even-

ing . 

[Signed] Ruth Anaruk 






The little village where I come from is Perryville and it is

located on the Alaska Peninsula, six to seven hours run by boat from

the Shumagin Islands. It is on the coast and there are lots of hills

and mountains around us.


The summers are sometimes very hot, with cold winters. There

are at least 100 people in all including the school teachers.


Recreations are baseball, basketball, and other sports. Last

year in the spring our boys played a game of baseball with the players

from the cutter Hermes. They won the game bay a schore of 9 to 3.


We have dances at least six or seven times a month in some of

the houses. But they're building a dance hall. The size of it is to be

30' x 50'; pretty good size for such a few people. They are planning to

have games played in it when it is done.


The natives there also have a bluefox farm on Chiachi Island.

That started four years ago. There's a certain family to take care of

it in the winter when the rest go to their trapping grounds and trap for

fur such as fox, mink, wolverine, cross fox, etc. In the summer there

is also someone to care for it and when the summer’s work is over they

pay the ones who took care of it. .Each man gets at least $200 to $250

apiece. But the men who work, kill and help with the skins in the winter

also get paid besides. First they have to catch the foxes and put them

into pens , then they pick out the finest before they do any killing

and let the bad ones go. The men and boys seem to like it and cooperate

together to put up feed during the summer months.


In the summer we put up fish and berries. We salt, smoke and

dry fish for our won use. The men do all that work while the girls

and older women pick berries and make jams and jellies out of them. There

are salmon berries, blue berries, mossberries, and cranberries.


Last year, beginning May 21, the volcano erupted and there was

Hardly any berries, game, fowl or fish. But now it isn't so had.


Father Hubbard and his party were in Perryville to climb Mt.

Veniaminof and see if it was dangerous. Before they started climbing

they gave talkies which the people enjoyed and were very jubilant about.

Tt took them at least two days to climb and were having hard times as

there are so many steep bluffs, but they go home all right.


There is a mayor and councilmen whom the people obey and try

to do the best they can. We also have a priest in the village. 


Dora Takak





My home town, Pilot Point, is located on the Ug-

ashik River on the Bristol Bay. The population is about

two hundred, when they’re all there. Most of the popula-

tionis make of the Alaska Packers, men who come there each

summer and work on the cannery, canning fish.


The climate is fairly warm in the summer time, in the

middle of the summer the temperature gets and high as 98Ί in

the shade. In the winter the weather gets quite cold at times.

20Ί below zero.


For living the people fish, and trap. In summer

the people fish and sell it to the cannery, of which they

get fourteen and a quarter cents for a fish. People

there make two to six hundred dollars each season, that is,

if the fish are running good. The packers put up thirty to

fifty thousand cases each year. Red salmon, of course, is

the main and only fish they can, and of course the king and

dog are top, but it isn’t so sweet and juicy and the red sa-

lmon. Crabs are also canned at the Alaska Packers Cannery.

Cod fish is also caught and salted and diced.


For recreation people gamble, dance, play pool, and

baseball, camp, hike, and joy ride in automobiles and speed

boats. Speed boat riding is the leading recreation in my

home town.


Traveling is quite a hobby to the people of Pilot

Point. They travel by boats and chiefly by plane. The pl-

anes come in quire often bringing passengers, mail and fresh

fruits and vegetables like tomatoes, celery, bananas, peaches,

cherries, plums and many others which we can’t raise at our



In winter people travel by skating and skiing and

so many dog teams. There is so many lakes and hills that

 it is always cheaper to either ski or skate going from

one village to another. Skating is one of the chief means

of traveling from village to village in winter.


Most every one has a radio and light plant. By

means of radio, we get the news and what’s going on in the

outside world.


There are few attractive homes, most of them are at

the north end of the village. To tell the truth, most

houses aren’t painted and the fish cashe could be built a

little more like one than of having a tumble down shack

covered over with canvas. Garbage is one of the most un-

tidy looking places, since most people are living so close

the beach back and it is always easy to dump the cans, etc.





there. A garbage disposal will be very nice thing to have,

as it will make the bank, not of cans, boxes, and all such



Roads can be made more smoothe with gravel then of

having big gutters here and there.


Our town is run by the Alaska Packers Cor-

poration. This company is known to be the biggest Packing

Corporation in the world. 

[Signed] Mary Griechen




This little village is located on the Yukon River. It is in a

valley; the best valley along the river. In the winter the coldest it

gets is between 50° and 60° below zero. There are not many people during

the winter for they are out at their winter camps. There are only about

28 people there during the winter. In the summer there are somewhere a-

round 90 people. 


In order to make a living we hunt, herd reindeer, work for

wages at the government school, cut and haul wood, work at mines at

Marshall, and go muskrat hunting down ont the flats in the spring. We

have good duck and goose hunting in the spring and fall. 


All thru the summer we do a lot of fishing for Yukon River

salmon, which we dry, smoke, and salt. Some of this we sell, and some

we keep for dog feed and still others we keep for ourselves. In the

winter, too, we have fishtraps in some of the lakes and streams, and we

visit them every once in a while to take out the fish that we catch.


 Willie Kinzy







My home is at Point Hope. The Post Office

is called Tigara. The village is located at 68Ό de-

grees north latitude and 167 west longitude. There

are two oceans on either side and there are two capes.

Cape Lisburne is north of Pt. Hope and Cape Thompson

is southeast of the village. Lisburne is about 30

miles north and a range of mountains extends between

the two capes. 


The village is about half a mile away from

the point; the houses are built of lumber and drift

wood; more of lumber then of drift wood, which are

covered with sod. In. winter the temperature goes

down to 30 below zero, but not very often below 6°

below zero. In summer it sometimes goes up to 80°.

There are about 150 people in the village.


In the summer the people fish, hunt walrus,

herd reindeer, and dig in the old ruin for relics to

sell when any boat comes. In the fall some people go

up the Kukpuk River to fish and also to rebuild their

trapping camps. In the winter most of the people go

trapping up in the mountains. The season opens in

November and lasts until March 31st. In the district

called no. 8 it opens in December an. lasts until

April 15. Last winter some of the trappers caught over

40 foxes. In the Spring the men go out on the ice for

whaling; the season lasts for about three months and

after that they hunt for oogruks, seals, walrus, bel-

ugas, and ducks. The first part of July some of the

men go to gather crowbill’s eggs in skin boats. 


For recreation they dance both Eskimo and

American dances, play football, baseball and do other

things for pleasure. In the summer they travel by

skin boats with outboard motors. In the winter and

spring they go by dogteam. 


The village is governed by seven council-

mmen and four women. Every Saturday these four wo-

men inspect the houses. Every New Year they have an

election in the school house for the village com-

mittess. There is also a Commissioner in Pt. Hope. 


There are two radios, so we can hear news

and music. In the winter the mail is brought by dog-

team which makes four trips. In the spring or autumn

the mail comes by boats and sometimes by planes.

In the summer boats bring supplies for the teachers

and the store. Every Sunday we go to church at 11 a.m.

[Signed] Rose Koonook  /  John Oktallia 



Point Lay


My home is located on an island; it is

cold in winter, and by now (October 20) it is just

about freeze-up time. Boys and girls go skating

and sliding. They wear fur clothing and they never

wear shoes in winter. Sometimes it is warm in the

summer and the people can go without parkas or other

fur clothing. 


There are quite a few houses in the vil-

lage but not much over 100 people.


People go fishing by boats in the fall; they

store them and eat them choked or frozen. The reindeer

hide is used for clothing and the meat is for food.

Squirrel, skins are usually used for coats and parkas,

and the meat is used for food. Seal, oogruk, polar

bear, brown bears are all used for food and clothing;

whales are not used for clothing, but are much used

for food; they are very big, some over 100 feet long.

People go and mine coal in the spring and fall.


Recreations are good: Eskimo games and

dances mostly and the people do them very well.


In winter there are people traveling by

dog teams from place to place and in summer by sail

and by skin boats. Once an old man went to Icy Cape

from Wainwright by a sailboat all alone and I think

he enjoyed his trip.


The village is governed by seven council-

men; or six of them are councilmen and one is the

marshal. They also have a reindeer manager and a



People travel and bring news from place

to place. The mail carrier is the one who brings

the mail, and his home is in Barrow, his route from

Barrow to Point Hope. The mail goes four times a

year. In Point Lay we have only one radio and we

often hear the news. In the summer we sometimes get

mail by sailboats, launches and by large ships. In

the spring it sometimes comes by plane.


There is one schoolhouse in the village

and the building is also used as a church. There are

no mountains and trees; it is only tundra. There is

a lagoon about a mile wide and there are a few low

hills on the opposite of the lagoon from the village. 

[Signed] Reginald Joule 




Point Lay 

My home is located between Wainwright and Point Hope;

the name of the village is Pt. Lay. The climate is very cold in winter

time; they use skin parkas in order to keep war. The number of people

at Pt. Lay is a little over 100 so that's not very much. There are not

many old people living there.


At home they don't fish very much. In the fall before

the ice freezes they go up the river and stay up there in igloos which

are built of willows and sod. They stay up there for about three

weeks till the ice is good enough to travel on. They only catch about

from seven to fourteen sacks of grayling.


The men are always busy trapping foxes from December to

April 15. Sometimes a man would stay away from home about one month up

inland trapping foxes and come home with about ten foxes at once.


Besides trapping they do a lot of hunting. They hunt

seals in winter and spring time. They use the seal blubber for dog

feed and for their own use.


The most enjoyment they have at home is Eskimo dancing

and football. Between Christmas and New Years in our village is the time

they have lots of fun. They do all kinds of rough stunts at that time.


The way they travel at home is by dog team in winter

time. In the summertime they use skin boats and whale boats and some

motor boats.


The village is governed by seven Councilmen. Five men

and two women are on the Council. The women inspect every Saturday

to see if the houses are clean. They keep the records of the houses

and at New Years they give the cleanest house a prize.


The way they carry mail is mostly by dogteam, which is

done three times a year: November, January and March. The airplanes

go up there at least five times a year.







Rampart is located, on the banks of the

Yukon in the interior of Alaska. It is considered the

prettiest spot along the river. Rampart once had a

population of about four thousand but that was away

back when--in the mad gold rush days when gold was dis-

covered on one of the creeks by a native. Then people

of every description swarmed in, but now only a little

over a hundred people reside in and around Rampart. 


The scenery is very pretty, for our little

village is almost entirely surrounded by hills. There

was once a government experimental farm across the river

from the town but is is now uninhabited. The alfalfa and

hay (oats, etc.) still grows over there in big squares

of lavender and yellow and this added, to the rose of the

fields or fireweed and green trees makes a very color-

ful picture. Strawberries still grow on the farm and are

picked by the people. 


The biggest attraction of Rampart is

"Rex Beach's cabin." This little cabin was built by the

author years ago when he lived there gathering material

for his stories. No one paid very much attention to

it then, but now his cabin is very much admired by the

tourists—it is all scribbled up with names and initials

of people from all over. 


The weather is very warm in the Spring and

Summer. In June the temperature is often higher than

100. In August it grows cooler and by October pieces

of ice begin to form in the river and along the shore.

These grow larger and larger until the river finally

freezes up in November. From November until late in

March it is very cold. The coldest weather we've had was

70° or more degrees below zero, but no one minds the

cold; everyone dresses in fur boots and parkas as they

do all along the Yukon. 


The biggest excitement of the year is the

Breakup, which occurs in May, and it never falls to

thrill even the oldest sourdough.

People make their livings by fishing,

hunting, gardening, working in gold mines, sewing, cut-

ting and selling wood. Wood is plentiful around that

part of the country and coal is something foreign to

us. In the fall thousands of caribou cross the river

almost right in the town. Men go on moose hunts and are

almost always successful. Moose and caribou are our

main foods. Berries of different varieties are plen-





tiful. Women gather a lot of them for the winter and the

ambitious ones have enough jelly prepared to last the

whole winter until Spring. Almost every family has a

vegetable garden and the vegetables are stored away in

cold storage or cellars. 


Different forms of amusement vary with the

seasons: In the winter we dance a lot, read a lot, go

dog team riding, play cards, listen to the radio every

blessed evening. A lot of people have radios. The

children coast and ski and make play houses of snow. In

the Spring we fish for grayling thru the ice, go fish-

ing on the creeks for trout. In the summer the boys

practically live in the water. They also play baseball

quite a lot. We dance very often in the summer, espec-

ially on boat nights-- I mean when we expect the steam-

boat Yukon which brings our mail and freight during

the summer months. 


In the fall skating is enjoyed very much

before the deep snow cones. Traveling is done mostly

by dog teams. In the winter we get mail twice a month

by dog team, too. In the summer people travel on the

river in motor boats, and canoes, quite a bit of trav-

eling is also done by flying. 


We have contacts with the outside by radios,

newspapers, mail, boats and airplanes.

The town is governed by a Commissioner.

People never seem to have any serious trouble.

Rampart can be improved in many ways. First

of all a hospital and doctor would help, even only a

nurse would be nice. Whenever anyone gets sick they

have to be taken about eighty or ninety miles to the

nearest hospital or else a plane has to be sent for to

take the patient to Fairbanks. Rampart would be benefited

by a church, a landing field for airplanes, and more

attractive and larger homes.

[Signed] Kitty Evans 






My home is located, in the interior part

of Alaska along the banks or the Yukon River. To me,

there is no other place in the world as beautiful as

Rampart. It is entirely surrounded by beautiful moun-

tains. Looking across the river, once can see moun-

tains that seem to reach the sky. 


The climate is usually very favorable. In

winter it is cold and there is much snow. In summer

the thermometer mounts to a high point, which shows

that Alaska is entirely different from the opinions of



There are approximately a hundred and ten

residents. There are probably only about ten full-

blooded Indians, most of them being half-breeds and

whites. Rampart was first settled, by white people when

gold was discovered along the banks of one of the

creeks. Gradually more people, both Indians and whites,

settled along the banks of the many creeks. These creeks

are located in all places out of town. After many years

of mining and prospecting, gold was found to become

scarce, but to this day there are to be found mnay old

sourdoughs and their mines. 


In summer, most of the natives earn their

living by fishing for the salmon that is very abundant

in the streams and the river. Some men are employed

at the various mines. The women and children pick and

can the wild fruits that grow in great amounts. In

winter the men trap and hunt the wild animals of var-

ious kinds. Moose and caribou meat are the main foods.

These animals are killled in the fall and stored for

winter use. Fur is traded for food and clothing at the

one trading post. The women also earn money by

sewing for the prospectors and the other white men. 


For recreation the inhabitants of Rampart

do various things. Dancing is probably the most pop-

ular. During the holidays everyone gathers from miles

around and dances are enjoyed every night, besides the

parties. They also enjoy all kinds of outdoor sports

such as snowshoeing, skating, riding, skiing, and in

summer swimming, boating and camping. Naturally, there

are a few who spend their vacations in unpleasant ways

but the majority of them are people of good behaviour. 


They have various ways of traveling but

the most important ones are boats and dogteams. Per- 




haps every family has a large boat with an engine in

it. With the aid of these they can move to different

places during the summer. They also have large, well-

trained dog teams. There is no use for these during

the summer but in winter they are in constant use. 


The village is governed by a commissioner.

The school teacher governs the behaviour of the chil-

dren. There is verly little trouble among the people,

therefore, there is little use for a commissioner. 


The people contact other villages in

many ways. In winter, a mail team makes a trip to

Manly Hot Springs, about seventy miles distant, every

two weeks. In this way we secure mail from other

places. Almost every family owns a radio, therfore

news from the outside is kept up with. In summer mail

is brought by a steamboat which makes two trips every

month from Dawson to Nenana. People also travel on the

boat, besides on their own small boats. Airplanes

are used also, and during the past year has been more

frequently used for traveling. 


Looking back now, I can see many ways in

which the village can be improved. First of all, the

people should be taught to obtain more sanitary con-

ditions in the homes, build larger homes and furnish

them with things which would make them more comfortable.

Then they could be taught the various methods of

preserving food for winter use. Many valuable foods

are used only in summer because of the fact that they

will not keep during the winter. They could also be

helped by making more use of the things Mother Nature

affords them, if only they had someone who could en-

courage them and bring to them the realization of the

value of their native crafts, foods and other things.

There is a possibility that they could be helped be-

having a doctor and nurse, but since there are so few

people sickness is vary rare so, of course, a hospital

isn't a necessity. A library would be a very nice thing

to add to one list of things for recreation. As it is

now there are few people who have enough to read.

Being neighborly they usually pass books around to one

another. A moving picture certtainly would be enjoyed

by all, but I believe it is not missed so very much.

There is great promises of earning a fortune in having a

fur farm, since wild animals are so abundant.

 [Signed] Margaret Evans







Rampart is located on the banks of the

Yukon River about 75 miles above the mouth of the

Tanana River and it is about 60 miles south of the

Arctic Circle. The view around this place is very nice;

looking across the river from the village you can see

some rolling foothills on which there was once a United

States Experimental Farm and behind these foothills is

a long range of mountains. There are mountains all

around the town and these make the town look as though

it is in a big hole; this also is what gave Rampart its



In summer the weather is very warm and

hardy vegetables are easily grown, but in winter the

sun is shut off from the town and at times the thermom-

eter drops clear down to 70° below zero, but we don't .

mind the cold much as we are dressed warmly and we also

get used to it. There is plenty of timber around there

for warm log cabins and for fuel. 


There aren't many more than a hundred

people there, but means of making a living are many.

In winter the larger portion of the people trap, but

some of then carry mail by dog team; some cut wood for

the river steamboats and some of them work in the gold

mines. In summer most of them work in mines and

fish; usually with fishwheels turned by tile current

of the river. Some of the older native women make their

living by sewing skins and fur that they tan themselves. 


For recreation we do a lot of dancing and

in winter we ski, skate, coast, have dog team rides and

in summer we play ball, swim and have rides in canoes,

motor boats and also small sailing boats. 


The largest part of the traveling is done

by dog teams and small motor bouts, but people there

also travel by airplanes, river steamboats, and some

of the people also drift with the current if they are

not in a hurry and they want to go down the river. 


This village is governed by a U. S. Com-

missioner but he doesn't have much to do so he does

some gold mining on the side.

The people keep in contact with other places

by mail carried by dog teams in the winter and by

steamboat in the summer and also by radio and travelers.






Ruby is a beautiful town and also a very nice place to live.

It is located very near the center of Alaska on the banks of the Yukon

river. Ruby is situated on a hillside and surrounded by hills on three

sides. At each end of town facing the river are high bluffs. It is

approximately 260 miles up the Yukon River on the boat and then 200 miles

further by train to Eklutna.


The climate in summer is very hot at times. It gets as hot as

110° in the sun, and at other times it is very rainy. In the fall the ice

begins to run and in October it gets thicker and thicker. Ice forms along

the shore. It gets wider and thicker. In November it freezes up. Some-

times there is an early freezeup about the first of November or a late

one around the 18th or 20th. In winter it gets as cold as 60° below.


There are approximately 160 people in Ruby. In summer there are

a lots more besides.


Ruby was probably named so for the ruby stones, found in the near-

by creek. Gold was discovered in Ruby in 1914. There was a big stampede.

People came from all over. There were about 600 people. Houses were

built all over the hillsides. There were many stores, drugstores, and

grocery stores, bakeries, candy shops, retail and wholesale stores. There

were also beauty shops, saloons, restaurants, and dance halls. Now there

are only two stores, one dance hall, one restaurant, a machine shop, a

grade school and a barber shop. All of the old buildings are dilapidated.

People have torn most of them down and used them for wood.


A lot of men work in drifts and out on the creeks. Some haul

freight with trucks in summer and with dog teams in winter. Men work

for the Alaska Road Commission in the summer and they also work for

wages in fish camps. The people in Ruby plant gardens for themselves;

they cut and haul wood, and some people fish with nets, but most of them

use fishwheels.


For recreation in winter we go skiing, coasting, and for dog-

rides, and some people go hiking with snowshoes. We also go to dances,

listen to the radio, read, and play cards. In summer we go for boat-

rides, car rides, and people go horseback riding. We go swimming, go to

dances, movies, and listen to the radio.


Most of the traveling is done by gasboats or steamers, airplanes

and cars in summer and by airplane and dogteam by winter. In winter we

get our mail twice a week by plane; in summer twice a month by boat and

1st class mail twice a week by plane. There is a radio sending and re-

ceiving set in Ruby and also a telegraph office.


Our village is governed by a U. S. Deputy Marshal and Commissioner. 


Hazel Knox







Ruby is a town located on the bank of the

Yukon River about 175 miles from Fairbanks. It has

a population of 140 people with about half that

many families. The climate is very cold in winter,

the thermometer going down to 60° below zero; the

summers, however, are very warm at times. 


Ruby was founded in the year 1905; people

began to settle there because of the gold they found

near there; there's a big mining camp 30 miles out

of Ruby where they take out thousands and thousands

of dollars worth of gold each summer. It is called

Long Creek and there are several small mining camps

beyond this place. There is a government road to

them from Ruby. 


Most of the natives fish in the summer and

trap in the winter. Fur-bearing animals are plen-

tiful as Ruby is surrounded, by hills, the favorite

places for such animals as beaver, mink, muskrat,

marten, weasels and land otter. Some of the people

work on the road, build bridges, work at the gold

mines, or work in the lumber mill. Some haul freight

from Ruby to the mining camps, with trucks and. cat-

erpillars. In the fall they cut their own wood and

hunt their own meat for their winter supply. 


For recreation there are dances every Sat-

urday night. There is a man who travels along the

Yukon in the summer who carries a moving picture

outfit with him and we see then frequently. The

children play ball in the summer and most of the

boys have bicycles. In the winter there is lots

of dogteam racing, coasting and skiing. 


There is a fairly good landing-field at

Ruby so airplanes, take most of the emergency travel

cases. In the winter the well-to-do people travel

by plane; others travel by dogteams. In summer,

there are gas boats and steamers on the river. 


The Government has a telegraph and radio

station at Ruby; nearly every family owns a radio;

mail comes twice a week in summer; and the re are

.a good many telephones in town, so communication is

well taken care of. The town is governed by a Com-

missioner and. Marshal.

[signed] Marie Brown 





Ruby is a village on the Yukon River. It's right about in the

middle of the Yukon. In summer it gets very hot. We usually have to go

in swimming or stay in the shade or something to cool ourselves off. But

in the shade, there usually are a lot of flies. That's the thing that's

wrong with Alaska in summer; there are too many flies. In winter it

gets too cold—about 50° below zero. 


There are around 150 people in Ruby. It's only very small but

sometimes when everyone comes in from the creeks or camps we do have a

lot of people.


Ruby was discovered in 1911, before I was even born. Someone

found gold around there and there was a gold rush. Everyone came from

all over. There are a lot of mining camps around town. Ruby was once

big but there was once a fire there which burned down the whole water-

front. Since then people started coining and going. But more go than the

few who come. Some say there were hotels, restaurants, and cafes but

now there is only a hotel, where people occasionally go to eat. There

are two stores in Ruby; one is the Northern Commercial Co.


The people fish, hunt, and trap for a living. Some of the men

mine and do all sorts of things to make money. Some of the women make

fur parkas, fur boots, and other fur clothes for a living, some do laun-

dry for old bachelors. They go out into the woods and haul wood, too.

For water, we make holes in the middle of the river and get good ice water

as we don't have any running water or wells. 


In summer we swim, go on picnics, play baseball and football,

and other games. We also have dances when some people from out on the

creeks come in. We always celebrate the fourth of July. In winter we

ski, coast; sometimes when we want real excitement we get an old

Yukon sleigh and go down the hill, snow flying in our faces and girls



We travel by plane and by river steamer. When the first boat in

the spring comes everyone is excited, even the old men and women. The

ice breaking up causes lots of excitement, too. We have a telegraph sta-

tion; a weather bureau office; and the store has telephones to the air-

field. Most of the people have radios. 


We are governed by a U. S. Marshal, a Commissioner, and the

game warden comes around every spring and fall. 


Josephine Notti 





One hundred and fifty miles up the

river north of Kotzebue lies a little village known

as Selawik. As it is on the river, the houses are

built in one long street on both banks of the river.

The only means of getting to each other is by a row

boat. If you had to visit your friends or to borrow

something, all you'd have to do is to get in your

boat and row across and then row back again. 


As Selawik is inland, the climate is very

warm in the summer, registering as high as eighty-five

above. It sometimes gets impossible to live indoors and

as a result each family has a stove outdoors where

their meals are cooked. Most of the families use home

made sheet-iron stoves for this purpose altho the more

well-to-do families use ranges. Of course the picture

wouldn't be complete without mosquitoes, which at

times are so dense that when landing on a dog's muzzle

the dog dies from lack of blood. Many reindeer have

lost their lives in this manner. 


In the winter, the weather is very severe,

sometimes more than sixty below. We have severe blizzards

thruout the winter, sometimes so strong that the safest

thing to do is stay in the house. Many times a blizzard

comes, up while we are in school, so we have to sleep

overnight in the school-house! The storm

leaves high banks all around the houses and some are so

high that your neighbor has to dig you out. Many times

it is impossible to find the house, but if you see a

stove pipe sticking thru the snow, then you are sure

that you're digging in the right vicinity. It certainly

is queer to see the people come in and out thru a little

hole which they have dug in a tunnel-like fashion into

their house. These drifts cause the houses to be flooded

in the Spring unless a ditch is dug around them. 


As there are very few modern facilities

in the village the people are more or less primitive in

a fashion, altho they might have changed considerably

during the years I have been absent. The people are very

religious and do not approve of dancing or card playing

and neither are done in the village. I don't believe

they ever had a dance since the village was founded.

They take living very seriously, hunting and trapping

all of the time.

In the Spring, they all move up the river

at different stations and hunt for muskrats. The

teachers and the store keepers are the only ones left 



behind. Each family gets hundreds of muskrats which

they use to pay off their winter bills and to order

from Sears Roebuck and other companies. Fur is used for

money here. When ordering from catalogues, instead of

sending money, muskrats are sent. In the winter blue

fox, white fox, silver and red and cross fox, mink,

squirrel, "siksikpuk", bear, wolverine, wolf, land

otter, rabbit, reindeer, caribou, beaver are caught and

used as a means of making a living. 


Fish is also a major means of making a

living. Whitefish, salmon, grayling, mudshark, pick-

erel, river trout, humpbacks and suckers are used for

personal use and the fish is sold in large quantities

as there is a constant demand for them from Nome. 


Wild fowl such as geese, all kinds of ducks,

crane, make up the principal diet during the spring and

summers, Salmonberries, cranberries, blueberries,

currants and blackberries arc picked during the berry

season and put in pokes or barrels for winter use. 


The younger generation does a lot of

skating as long as the snow is gone, end when it’s im-

possible to skate, football and baseball takes their

place. Dog team rides, reindeer rides, rabbit drives,

and hunting are enjoyed the year around. There are no

movies or dances or parties, For recreation the women

folk usually go berry-picking or continually visit each



Dog teams are the major means of travel in

winter, while in summer river boats are used as trans-

portation. In Spring, log-rafts ere used in returning

to the village from the hunting grounds. It certainly

is a striking scene to see a. parade of log-rafts floating

down the river, each raft having a tent and smoke curling

up into the air from each one. On another raft their

dogs are kept and also their fish. 


There are no such things as cars here and

the majority of the people wouldn't know one if they saw-

one. A few years back, when an airplane was sighted,

everyone thought it was the coming of Christ and several

of the old folks who weren’t quite prepared for judgment

day, kneeled on their hands and knees and set forth a

storm of prayers asking for forgiveness and mercy! 


The school teacher sees to it that every

one is a law-abiding citizen and if anyone fails to do 





so, they are either sent to Kotzebue or Nome to the

United States court, and finally end up at the Federal




There are very few contacts with other

people in the village itself, but in the spring most

everyone goes down to Kotzebue and stays there for the

summer. Here they get a chance to meet new people that

have come down from Noorwik [Noorvik] , Noatak, Kivalina, Wain-

wright, and other places, for the summer. They also

meet tourists from the outside. In the village there is

one telephone belonging to a storekeeper with which

calls are sent to Kotzebue. The teacher and the store

keeper have radios also.

— # —

The sanitary conditions are very poor and

could be much improved. The school could be run on a

little better basis also. It seems the teachers don’t

make a great deal of effort to push the deserving chil-

dren ahead and some students stay in the same grades

when they really should be advanced. Due to this fact,

many children have quit school, rather than going thru

the same grind.


Doctor and nurses would be very welcome as

there are neither here. In most sicknesses hardly any-

thing is done and eventually the person dies. In

more severe cases, the patient is taken to the hospital

at Kotzebue where, under the excellent care of the

staff, the patient recovers. 


The people should be induced to take re-

ligion less seriously and have a preacher who doesn’t

fill their ignorant heads full of false ideas.

When I was there it was a sin to wear anything red, to

drink coffee, etc. according to the beliefs of our



We should have better hones with more than

one room. The houses consist of one room only where the

family lives. It is very crowded this way and is not

good for the health of the family.

[signed] Irene Frost






My home is on an island about three miles

long with an inlet, on the south side. The climate is

very cold in the winter and warm in the summer. There

are about 275 people in Shishmaref; for a living the

natives hunt for fish, seal, fox, ducks and deer. Some

of the young men also work at the mines in the summer. 


The natives are always having a good time

dancing, playing football, baseball, running races,

racing dogteams and wrestling. Most of these things

and others are done during Christmas week, lasting

until New Year’s night. 


Traveling is done mostly by dogteams in

winter and in the summer by skin boats or by steam-

ers which come around about three tines during the

summer season. 


Mail is carried by mailboats in the summer,

twice a month, but in the winter dogteams or planes

bring the mail. 


In the Spring the men go out with their

families to hunt on the outside of the island and

usually stay out two months. In the summer nearly

everybody goes up to Serpentine to pick salmonberries,

blueberries, blackberries, cranberries and straw-


The village is governed by nine council-

men and two native marshals. 

[signed] Ralph Sinnok (de)





My home is on Nushagak Bay, and it is about 340 miles from

Anchorage. On one side of the river is Kushagak village, Clark's Point,

Creek Cannery, and on the other is Kanakanak and Snaa- Point. The last is

the biggest town in among the others. 


In the summers it gets up to 80° above and it hardly ever gets

dark there; I guess we have about one hour of darkness. In the winter,

however, it goes to about 30° below zero. Then we have to wear fur boots

and parkas. 


The population there is about 250. But around June we have lots

more people because the cannery boats start coming in and the Eskimos

come from all the small village to set net. Most of the people there

fish for a living during the summer, tho some work in the canneries. In

the winter most of them trap. 


For recreation we dance, skate and ski in the winter, or got to

moving picture shows. In summer we can play baseball or go on picnics.


If we want to send a message we have to go to Kanakanak radio

station. We go there by plane, cars, boat or on foot as it’s only six

miles from Snag Point. We have both a U. S. Commissioner and a Deputy

Marshal to govern us at Snag Point. 


Anfesa Goley







My home is located on the Yukon

River; the climate is somewhat like that here

at Eklutna, but much colder in the winter. 


Stevens Village is just a small

place with a population of about 100 people. 


In the winter most of the people

trap and hunt for a living. In the spring

theu hunt muskrats, and after they get the

skins dried, they buy sugar, butter, flour,

bacon, and other things. Instead of paying

with money they use the muskrat skins in trade.

Fishing is the main industry in the summer. 


Recreations are dancing, swimming,

skating, skiing, and many other outdoor



Dogteams are the winter way of

travelling; boats are used on the river in the



Mail is brought to Stevens Vil-

lage by dog teams in the winter; occasionally

by airplanes, and by boats in the summer.


The people should send their chil-

dren to school when they are younger than the

age when they start now, so that they may

have longer in which to learn to live a better

life and to care for their health. 


[signed] Eugene John 





St. Mark's Mission is located on the banks of the Tanana River

about a mile from the town of Nenana. Between the town and the Mis-

sion is a little Indian village whose population is rapidly diminish-



The climate is like that of any little northern interior village

of Alaska. In the winter the temperature drops to thirty or forty

below zero and quite often to sixty below. During the summer the tem-

perature is very comfortable except for the few times when it is un-

comfortably warm. 


Being in the Mission doesn't mean that we get everything on a

silver platter. The children do everything we can to make things

easier. In the summer large areas of land planted with vegetables

yield a great deal of food for use during the long winter months.

Besides the gardens there are the two fish wheels which keep us busy.

The fish are cut and dried for the dogs. We have never had much

success with canning the fish. We also pick and can as many blueber-

ries as possible. If the fish run is good and the berries plentiful

we are sitting pretty, but if it isnt we just tighten up our belts

and wish for better luck next summer. 


The most wonderful river in the world runs right past our

front door. In the winter we skate and in the summer we swim. The

water is very muddy and swift. We children seem to be the only ones

who enjoy swimming in it. The staff members say it's too cold. We

also do a lot of climbing for the opposite side of the river is a

mass of hills. Skiing is popular among the boys and some of the

girls but they are too steep for most of us. Something that we can

do both in summer and winter is dancing and we do plenty of it.


Nenana is quite a busy little town during the summer. For

here it is that the trains are met by the steamers to carry mail

and freight to the people along the Tanana and Yukon rivers, so we

have the privilege of traveling by either train or boat. In the win-

ter our dog teams are invaluable to us all. 


The mission is governed by the Bishop of the Episcopal church,

while the village has a chief, and the town a Mayor.


We keep in touch with the outside world by radios, newspapers

and newsy people who arrive from other villages by dog teams, boats,

and trains.

Diane Westerlund






Tanana is a small town on the banks of the

Yukon, four miles below the Tanana river, which

is located in the central part of the territory. 


The winter months are quite cold, the temp-

erature often falling from 40 to 60 below zero.

The summers, however, are very warm and mild.

The Yukon freezes over in November and is usually

quite solid by the 15th when the mail planes’

service starts. The river is used for a landing

field until the last of April when the ice along

the edges begins to thaw and become dangerous.

The breakup is usually in the middle of May or

even later. 


People always look forward to the time when

the river is free from ice and the steamers

come in with fresh fruit, frieght and mail. 


The mild summers permit bountiful crops--

the chief one being potatoes. 


There are about 95 people living in Tanana,

mostly natives. These natives make their living

by "ratting" in the spring, fishing during the

summer, and hunting and trapping in the winter.

Their favorite recreations are dancing, dog-

racing, and the giving of potlatches. They usu-

ally give potlatches whenever any one of their

relatives dies. 


The potlatches last for about a week, the

women cooking up big tubs of meat and soup and

every day people fathering in the dance hall to

eat and make merry. 


Sometimes, too, when the chief has a big

catch of furs he gives potlatches and they give

many things away to their friends and neighbors

such as blankets, dress goods, clocks, calico

and muslin. 

 [signed] Jenny Larson






My home is Tanana, at the mouth of the Tanana River,

on the banks of the Yukon River. The people there aren't many because

the people do not stay in town. They are always out fishing, trapping,

or hunting. 


During the summer the people are all out fishing and

they never come into town unless it is necessary, altho they all come

in for a couple of weeks in July. 


The climate there is very cold in the winter and so hot

that it is suffocating in the summer; at least it seems that way for

the people up there. 


During the winter the people are again out of town on

the traplines. They usually stay away on homesteads where they are close

to their traps. 


The things they do for recreation isn't very much but

it is enough; such things as gambling, dancing, skating, skiing, swim-

ming, and most common reading in their leisure time. 


Their ways of travel is by dog team in winder and boats

--mostly motor--in summer. For passengers and mail they have the river

steamers which are the Alice, Nenana, and the Yukon. We get all three

boats at home because we are right at the turning point of the river. 


The town is governed by the Commissioner and the Mar-

shal. In the last few years most of the governing has been done by the



Their ways of communicating are by telegrams, radios,

mail, and airplane. They used to carry mail by teams of horses but in

the past two years they have been using planes mostly. 


The town, however, could be made better by keeping con-

trol over the people and if by chance they can get more white folks in

town. There should be a lot done there in the way of cleaning up some

places so they won't have so much sickness in town. 








Tatitlek is a little village located half way between Valdez

and Cordova. I think it is the nicest little place in Prince William



My home is half-way surrounded by trees, while out in front

is the water and an island about a mile and a half long. There are a-

bout sixteen houses and about eighty-five people living there. 


My people make their living by hunting, fishing and trapping.

In the winter we have dances every Friday and Saturday, and quite often

we have our school programs. In the summer it gets so warm that most

of the people do their cooking outside their houses. 


The government school teacher governs the village with some

help from a person from the village. There are no electric lights there

so we use gas lamps for light. Most of the houses have radios which we

listen to to pass away the time in the evenings. 


So whenever you get to Tatitlek drop in to one of the houses

and see what kind of entertainment you get. 


Paul Vlassof






Teller, the place from which I came,

is located on the Seward Peninsula about 90

miles from Nome. It is built near the sea and

it has a very good harbor. The ships anchor in

Port Clarence in the summer, but the smaller

boats anchor in Grantley Harbor. 


The climate in winter is cold--down

to 50 below at times. In the summer it gets

really warm, altho last summer we had lots of



The popultaion is approximately 125.

The majority of the people are Eskimos or

mixed-bloods but there are quite a few whites,



In the winter most of the men hunt

foxes for a living. There are two or three

fox ranches in Teller, too. A few people are

in the mink business. In the summer the men

work on gold dredges, in mining camps, and

many of the natives go fishin. The Alaska

Road Commission had a camp in Teller, but it

was transferred to the Kougarok. 


Ways of travel in winter are by dog-

team and airplane. They use boats and airplanes

in the summer. There are a few trucks and cars

in Teller, too. The first cars were brought in

last Summer. Mail was carried by dogteam in

the past winters but this year it will be carried

by plane twice a month. It is carried by boat

in the summer. 


There is a commissioner in town, and

also a reindeer unit manager for government. 


For recreation we dance, play games,

si, skate, coast, swim, hike and go camping.

Many radios are owned by the people, and there

is one radiophone.

[signed] Grace Blatchford 






Unalakleet lies on the west coast of Norton Sound in "Seward's

Ice Box". When the vegetables are just sprouting and when the flowers

are in bloom, the village looks very beautiful, but I must admit that

from the top of the hills the place really looks like a dump pile. 


As for the climate I can truly say we have very cold winters.

The summers are nice, but could be better if there were no insects such

as gnats and mosquitoes. 


There are about 68 homes in Unalakleet, and a population of

about 370. Our best pastimes are skating in the winter and hiking in the

summer. There is also a good baseball team. 


There is no work at Unalakleet except fishing and gardening;

but we are noted for our vegetables. In fact all the nearby villages,

including Nome, buy their vegetables from us. 


Since there are so many others who could write better about

Unalakleet I won't say much except that the whole truth is that the vil-

lage could certainly stand a little more excitement. 


Ruth Ivanoff







Unalaska, my home town, is located in

the Aleutian Islands. It is the largest town on

Unalaska Island and, the population is about 300 or

350 people.

The town is on the seashore and is al-

most surrounded, by mountains. The climate is fairly

warm there due to the Japanese Current. The ground

around there is grassy with but a few willow trees.

Altho there are many odd jobs at times,

the people mostly hunt foxes, fish, or work in a herring

saltery for a living.

For recreation there are talking pictures,

shows, dances, a few sports such as swimming, skating,

skiing, tobogganing, hiking, playing tennis and so


About the only way of travelling is by

boat and the ways of contact with other places and

villages are by mail boats, radio, and telegraphy.

They have a court there, that takes care

of the troubles that come up.

The appearance or the town can be improved

if some people would. make their homes more attractive.

a number of the houses have stood for years without

being repaired or repainted. The people should raise

gardens, as there is quite a bit of land that can be

used for such, and there is practically no gardening

done in the village at all. 

[signed] Herbert Pape / Mike Stepetin 







My hone is at Unalaska, and it is one of

the largest islands of the Aleutian archipelago. 


Unalaska village is located on the north

side of the island and has a population of 300 people.

The climate id fair due to the Japanese current and

the winters are not extremely cold, the coldest weather

recorded is 10 degrees above but usually it is around

freezing. In summer the temperature is about 70Ί F.

There are large amounts of rain fall during almost all

the year around. 


From the first part of July to the latter

part of August the people pack herring and some of them

salt codfish in the Spring. During the winter the men

trap fox on the other islands where there are blue,

red and cross foxes. 


For recreation the people go to ball games

and tennis games, talking pictures, and dances. There

is also skiing, skating and coasting in the winter. 


Boats are the main source of travel all

the year around. In summer from April or May until

September the harbor is very busy. The village is

governed by a marshal and a commissioner. 


There is a naval wireless station about

one mile and a half from the village and those who can

afford a radio have one. 


The steamer Starr brings our regular mon-

thly mail, to contact with the other villages we either

walk or go by boat. 


Our town could be improved by applying a

little paint on some of the homes and by better

ways o living and better ways of preserving foods. 


[signed] Walter Dyakanoff







Wainwright is a little village about 100
miles south of Point Barrow. The climate is very warm in
summer and very cold in winter. There are approximate-
ly 250 people there; of these about six are whites and
the rest are natives.

The natives make their living by trapping
and hunting whales, walrus, seals, etc. They trade the
furs of the animals for flour, sugar, tea, coffee from
the very few stores at the village.


The people have their own Eskimo dances
on Christmas and on other important holidays. The chil-
dren learn to skate on their own home-made skates.

Dog teams are the most important ways of
traveling. Every family has its own dog team. These
teams are make up of from 5 to 15 dogs. In summer trav-

ling is done in small boats.

The village has its own commissioner. When
anything bad happens it is taken up by him with the help
of the village council.

Wainwright has very little contact with

the outside. Only in summer, we see ships from outside

as the ocean is frozen up all winter. Once in a great

while, an airplane lands at Wainwright. Very few people

have radios.


There are many ways in which the village

could be improved; for instance, the proper disposal of

garbage, proper sleeping quarters, better drinking water.

A hospital would be a great help to the people.









White Mountain is a little village of

approximately 250 people. It is located on the Fish

River 15 north of Golovin, about 25 miles south

of Council and 75 miles east of Nome. The village is

built right in between two mountains with spruce trees

behind that make a perfect shelter from snow storms and

high winds that are quite prevalent in that region. I

think it is the most beautiful little spot I’ve ever

seen or ever hope to see. Everywhere you turn you see

beautiful scenery.


The climate is quite normal. In the winter

it ranges from 20Ί to 32Ί below zero. The coldest it has

been known to get was 60Ί below zero. I haven't noticed

the temperature in the summer, but it doesn't get too



In the spring some people go to their

mining camps to dig for gold while others stay at home

to wait for the fishing season when they go up the river

to their various fishing camps to spend the rest of the

summer catching and drying fish for winter. In the fall

when the herring season comes along, they go to Golovin

to work at the Golovin Bay Packing Company plant or

fish herring for themselves


Blue berries, blackberries, salmonberries,

cranberries, and currants are picked by the women and

children and stored for winter use.


In the spring and fall, men go to the Fish

River Flats to hunt ducks, brant, and geese which are

either canner or put in cold storage for the winter.


With the coming of winter, men and boys

get their traps, guns and snared ready to try their luck

and skill at trapping and hunting fox, wolverine, land

otter and rabbits. The skins of the fox, wolverine and

otter are sold or else traded for goods. They also go

seal hunting.


For recreation purposes in the summer,

swimming heads the list of the young people. In the

winter, Eskimo football is played by everyone in general

who like a good healthy bit of exercise and activity.

Basketball and baseball are also played. A good deal of

skiing and skating is done, not the speak of tobogganing

or sliding down hills on sleds. Parties and dances are








scattered throughout the winter. Christmas, Thanksgiving,

and New Year’s are celebrated by everyone in a big

way. Eskimo games and entertainment fill up the

evenings between Christmas and New Year’s Eve.


In the winter time the chief means of

travel is by way of dogteam. Airplanes are chartered from

Nome on emergency cases. River scows and motor boats

carry the mail, freight and passengers from Golovin as

far up the river as Council.


The government of the village is taken care

of by the Mayor and the village council with a little

help from the teachers.


We are kept pretty well in time with every

thing thru mail, radio, and the Nome Nugget paper.


We get our water from the river all the

year around. I think if we had a better water

system, the community would be better off. At the

present time there are no doctors or nurses at the vil-

lage. It would be helped a lot if there was at least a

nurse. The winter evenings wouldn’t be so monotonous

if there was a theatre. Otherwise I think my home town

is the best village in Alaska.

[signed] Kitty Amberfelter




White Mountain


White Mountain village is located on Fish River on Seward Penin-

­sula 75 miles east of Nome, It sits on the side of two mountains and

there are spruce trees in back of' the village and across the river.

From the village and across the the river you can see a low chain of

mountains about 12 miles away.


In summer we have very warm weather in June and July. In July

and September we have quite a bit of rainfall. During the latter part

of September we have some snow but it melts; about themiddle part of

October the river freezes over and we have about 6 inches of snow on

the ground. Some winters there is very much snow but some winters

there is not, so much. In winter months December, January and February

are the coldest months. The temperature ranges from 20 to 30 below

and 60 below at its coldest.


Daring the winter months we wear mukluks and parkas for out of

doors. In the Summer we wear light clothing.


There are about 250 people at White Mountain. During the summer

the people leave their homes and go to their camps. The women folks

spend the summers at fish camps where they put up fish for winter use

for themselves and the dogs. The women also pick berries in August and

put them in barrels with sugar for winter use.


The men usually go to mining camps and find work or else they

ship. They also go on reindeer round‑ups and work during the butcher‑

 ing tune. During the winter the men freight and trap.


For recreation we have many kinds of ball games. We have a large

gym and auditorium where we play basketball, volleyball and besides

have many native stunts. For out of door spots we have baseball,

skiing, skating, football and sleighing besides dog teaming. Besides

we have picnics and hiking also dances thruout the winter.


During the summer mouths we travel mostly with motor boats and

scows on the river. Along the coast a mail boat comes every week.

They also have airplanes over about once a week at Golovin which is

15 miles south of White Mountain.


During the winter we travel by dog teams. The average teams have

about 9 to 13 dogs.


The village is governed by the mayor and the village Council with

the teacher's help. About one third of the families have radios. There

is also two telephones to Nome which are a great help when the doctor

is needed or when some one wants a plane. I am sure there could be

many improvements: for instance a better place to get water. The gar­-

bage disposal should be better, and we should have more books and na-

­tive teachers as well as an airplane field.








Wiseman is north of the Arctoc Circle about 100 miles up the

Koyukuk River.


The climate of Wiseman is warm during the summer when the

average temperature is about 60 or 70 degrees above zero. During the

winter it doesn't get very cold, probably not more than an average of

20 ° or 30 ° below zero.


There are only about a hundred people around Wiseman. They

make their living by mining, cutting wood, sawing wood, hunting and

working for wages.


About the only recreation we have is a dance once in a while,

and a show sometimes during the winter.


In the summer people hunt and fish up in the lakes about 25

miles away. Sometimes they get wolves when they go hunting for the cari-

­bou up there. They do some mining all the year around. Sometimes they

get as much as thirty ounces of gold and come to twon, get drunk and stay

until they have no more money to spend.


The town council takes care of the school kids so they don't

get drunk and so they don't get hurt by drunks, and see that they get

punished if they are bad. There is also a U. S. Commissioner in the



Wilson Winer

Harry Jonas







Yakutat, a little village in south­

eastern Alaska, is situated between two big ports,

Juneau and Cordova. The village itself is located on

a forested hill facing the bay.


In general, the climate is about average:

in summer hot enough to make one sweat, and in winter

cold enough for one to freeze.


The population summer is about three

times as large as in the winter. People from outside come

to fish, work in the cannery and a few for vacation.


In April everybody gets their nets ready,

their dories in shape and. find a place for their tents.

There are fine fishing locations which are independent­-

ly operated or run by groups, in which case, two or

three families get together and all the able boys and

girls fish for their parents and grandparents. In this

way all get a share of every load of fish. As a rule

boy and girls under 18 years of are and women are not

allowed to fish. Women and some of the girls work in

the cannery making from two to four hundred dollars

in a season. A few exceptions are made in the case of

a boy or girl who goes out to school in the fall. They

are allowed to fish if paying their own tuition, buy

their own clothes, etc. A fisherman usually comes out­

800 dollars clear in a season, altho some seasons fish­

ermen can come out 1200 dollars in the clear.


After fishing season in September is over,

the natives go out and fish for their winter’s food

supply. They dry, smoke and salt the fish. Then

others salt fish for the companies.


Starting in November the men go out trap-

ping and trap for mink, marten, etc. thru February.

Usually enough money is made so that Spring supplies

can be bought and some money left over for luxuries.


In February and March a chosen group of

men go out seal-hunting and stay for two days. If the

men come back with seal then anybody is free to go.

On one occasion eight men went out and all brought back

from 5 to 8 seals. One man and his son killed 20 seals

between them . The meat and fat is used for food and the

skins for Moccasins.




Between all these seasons for fishing,

trapping and seal‑hunting time is found for recreations.

Every Saturday they have dancing which is very much en­-

joyed by young and old. The music is up-to-date with

a good orchestra consisting of 2 saxaphones, 3 gui­-

tars, 2 violins, a. banjo, drum and piano.


On Thursdays basketball games are played

between different teams. On rare occasions, when

coast guard cutters, halibut fishing boats and destroy­-

ers come in, the town's team challenge them and u­-

sually come out ahead with flying colors. A free dance

is always given for these outside teams.


In the Winter, alternately on Friday nites,

practice dances and games are held. If one doesn't

know how to dance they can learn on these nights, while

on the other Friday nites the young and old believe in

having a little run by playing games such as: three

deep; squirrel and Flying Dutchman. Also square dances

and Virginia reels are danced on these nights.


In the way of transportation and contacts

with people living in the same community, you can

travel by automobile, foot, water and railroad. In

contacting with people there are telephones in most of

the homes. In the summer the steamers, the Yukon and

Alaska and cutters call in twice a month. In the

winter the steamer Victoria, cutters and destroyers

call in and people have radios for news of outside.


The village boasts a Judge, Mayor, Village

Council, and Alaska Native Brotherhood organization,

chief of police, 4 marshals and a preacher who all have

a say in any trouble or misunderstanding that arises.

With all these to help in any trouble it looks as though

the people should be law-abiding citizens and it is quite

true of most of the natives .


The village has a power plant so that all

homes have electric lights but I think it could be

improved if the lights were left on all night but as

it is the power plant is turned off a t 11:00 every

nite and on Saturday at 2:30 after the dance.


In the winter the steamer calls in only

once a month of account of the weather. I think that

if the steamers called in twice a month the town would

grow faster. As it is the town is growing slow but



The village has a hospital and a doctor

in summer. Natives need a doctor just as much in

winter, but so far we haven’t had a doctor in winter.

[signed] Margaret Bagay