For information and submissions, contact Pat Kramer at firstname.lastname@example.org
July 21, 2003
Totem Viewing This Summer
VANCOUVER, B.C. CANADA--Located on the cliffs of Point Grey in Vancouver West,
UBC’s Museum of Anthropology houses one of the world's finest displays of Northwest
Coast First Nations art.
The museum entrance is flanked by panels that create the shape of a Bent-box, which
the Salish believed contained the meaning of life. Once inside, a ramp lined with
impressive sculptures by renowned modern-day carvers leads to the Great Hall with
its massive historic totem poles, feast dishes and canoes from the Kwakwaka'wakw,
Nisga'a, Gitksan, Haida, Coast Salish and other Northwest Coast peoples.
Additionally, the world's largest collection of works by internationally acclaimed
Haida artist Bill Reid resides here, including his famous yellow-cedar sculpture
'The Raven and the First Men.'
Outdoors, the grounds of the museum is where two actual-size Haida houses and ten
poles capture the dramatic beauty of traditional Northwest Coast architecture and
The museum is located at the University of British Columbia, 6393 Northwest Marine
July 20, 2003
McMichael Exhibition Looks At Northwest Art and Nature
KLEINBURG, ONTARIO--In this latest summer exhibition at the McMichael Canadian
Art Collection, the embodiment of forms explores the concept that disparate Canadian
landscapes might in fact unite the nation in a kind of solidarity. Split into three
themes, the show moves from the Art of the Northwest Coast to Arctic Images,
to the more generalized theme of Overland & Underfoot. Taken together, they speak
of how the landscape reveals more about its viewers than hills and valleys. Rarely
seen Mungo Martin masks and totem poles created by Charles Edenshaw
sit alongside works by A.Y. Jackson, Frederick Varley, and Emily Carr. The McMichael
is situated on 100 acres of beautiful conservation land in the village of Kleinburg,
30 kilometres northwest of downtown Toronto. In addition to the collections, the
grounds have kilometres of trails perfect for hiking in the spring and summer.V
July 19, 2003
Totems on Tour
SEATTLE WA--Totem poles, compelling icons of Northwest native art, are the topic
of Seattle bus tours on Saturday and Aug. 9, sponsored by the Burke Museum and Gray
Line of Seattle. The tours start at the museum's exhibit "Out of the Silence:
The Enduring Power of Totem Poles," featuring the history of totem carving,
plus photos by Adelaide de Menil. Then the tour leaves the museum to visit totem
poles at Evergreen Washelli Cemetery, Pioneer Square, Pike Place Market and the Museum
of History & Industry. The tour includes a stop at Totem Fish and Chips for lunch.
Fee charged. Contact the Burke at www.burkemuseum.org or 206-543-5590.
July 16, 2003
Quileutes Unveil Restored Totem Pole
LAPUSH, WA -- The Quileute tribe celebrates its culture with canoe races, a salmon
bake, softball tournaments, an art show, dancing and drumming performances--and the
unveiling of a totem pole. The tribe will unveil and dedicate a repaired totem
pole at noon Friday at River's Edge Restaurant. The 30-foot totem pole, originally
carved by the late David Forlines, was restored by Makah tribal member Wade Green.
The cedar pole, which depicts a thunderbird, a whale and a bear with a fish, had
been in storage for several years after it began to crack, said DeAnna Hobson, Quileute
Tribal Council secretary.
July 16, 2003
Totem Being Carved at the Burke Museum
SEATTLE WA-Tlingit carver Stephen Jackson from Alaska brings his chisel
and hammer to the Burke Museum for six Saturdays in a row, beginning this week. Jackson,
who learned from his father, master carver Nathan Jackson, is creating an original
contemporary totem pole about the legend of the Kaats grizzly bear.
The pole will replace one of two totems that recently were repatriated to the Tlingit
tribe by the Burke Museum. Visitors can watch Jackson at work from noon to 4 p.m.
on July 19 and 26, and August 2, 16, 23 and 30. Admission is charged.
The museum is on the University of Washington campus at the corner of Northeast 45th
Street and 17th Avenue Northeast.
July 18, 2003
Annual Event at Pilchuck School Usually Sold Out In Advance
STANWOOD WA --They're gentle, but firm, about their request.
"No visitors without prior appointment" say a series of four signs as you
approach a narrow gravel road. The road leads through a thickly forested former tree
farm to the secluded Pilchuck Glass School.
So, it's unusual for the public to get to peek around the Pilchuck campus, as they're
allowed to do once a year during the school's annual open house. On this one day--July
27--up to 1,000 people get a sense of life on campus. They see world-class faculty
and artists who travel to the school from around the globe.
Renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly founded the school in 1971, along with patrons
of the arts Anne Gould Hauberg and John Hauberg. These days Chihuly takes a mostly
hands-off role and visits the school occasionally.
Visitors at the open house also see a nearby totem pole depicting the school's
three founders. The totem pole uses traditional Native American symbols and earthy
colors of greens, reds and blacks. It also incorporates glass as a nod to the school;
the totem pole was specially made in 2001 for the school's 30th anniversary.
July 14, 2003
Totem Pole Aficionado Tribute
SEATTLE,WA--As a wind tunnel expert for Boeing in Seattle, Michael Dale Morgan,
1935-2003, kept his sensors tuned to the possibilities of flight. From the Dyna-Soar
X-20 space plane to the 767 airliner, all took their licks from Mr. Morgan's keen
touch. But it was his interest in totem poles that put him in local headlines nearly
40 years ago.
With numerous totem poles in the gardens of family and friends, and at Edgemont Community
Park in Edgemont, Pierce County, the most familiar Morgan [-carved] pole is likely
the 24-footer on Admiral Way in West Seattle. It has been staring toward Seattle's
downtown skyline since 1966, a fixture in Belvedere Viewpoint Park. The Admiral Way
pole is a copy of the rotted original, which sat at the same spot and had been a
gift to the city from Ye Olde Curiosity Shop on Seattle's waterfront.
Mr. Morgan, his then-wife, Diane, and a fellow engineer, the late Bob Fleischman,
made it real again, donating their talents to create it. Diane Morgan's memories
came rushing back last week as she, her five children, family and friends made plans
to celebrate her ex-husband's life. She recalled that the city advertised for bids
and the Morgans' was lowest -- free "if the city got us the pole, the transportation
and materials," she said. "I made tracings of the original and we transferred
them to the trunk of a cedar tree the city cut for us out of Schmitz Park,"
Sarah "Sally" Streeter of Spokane [Morgan's daughter] remembers what it
was like when the wood chips were flying [and Dad was carving the totem pole]. "I
was either in kindergarten or first grade -- we weren't very big -- when my class
had this field trip to see a totem pole being carved," she said. "I remember
thinking, 'A field trip to my own garage?' "
Norman Morgan, 72, an electrical engineering consultant from Camarillo, Calif., also
can tell stories about Mike, his kid brother. "We always said carving totem
poles was a great excuse for Mike and Bob to just drink beer," he said. "They
had a lot of fun."
July 13, 2003
Tribal Canoeists Undertake Paddle Journey: 2003
PORT ANGELES, WA--As diamond-shaped cedar paddles dipped into the cold water
of the Port Angeles Harbor, the paddle song of the Lower Elwha Klallam tribe filled
the air. The tribe had been practicing each night in preparation for the 2003 Paddle
Journey to the Tulalip reservation near Marysville.
The journey, which starts this week for distant tribes, will be completed July 28
when 50 to 80 canoes from 40 Washington and British Columbia tribes ask permission
to come ashore at Totem Beach, near Marysville.
A five-day, potlatch hosted by the Tulalip tribe will celebrate the journey. Other
North Olympic Peninsula tribes, including Quinault, Hoh, Quileute, Makah, Jamestown
S'Klallam and Port Gamble S'Klallam, will begin paddling hundreds of miles during
the next two weeks. Canoes have varied departure schedules.
July 12, 2003
Queen Charlotte Islands Rocked by Notable Quake
HAIDA GWAII ISLANDS, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA --A northern B.C. island chain
was rocked by a major earthquake Saturday evening.
The National Earthquake Information Centre reported a quake measuring 5.7 on the
Richter shook the Queen Charlotte Island region.
The region is the ancestral home of the Haida people. This First Nations community
is famous for its dramatic totem poles and carvings. There is no word yet
on any injuries or property damage. The island chain just south of Alaska is also
known as Haida-Gwaii and is the traditional home for Canadian-based Haida people.
July 11, 2003
Australian Totem is a Model of Understanding
BEGA VALLEY DISTRICT, AUSTRALIA--Aboriginal employees of the Bega Valley Shire
Council along with mayor, David Hede and Aboriginal elder, Margaret Dixon, all stood
beside their newly unveiled [small] totem pole outside the council chambers yesterday.
This is their third totem pole, the work of Jason Campbell, unveiled at a NAIDOC
Day ceremony. Mayor David Hede told the crowd that the shire's Memorandum of Understanding
with Local Aboriginal Land Councils was being used all over Australia by other shires
who had requested copies as a model.
Hede and Aboriginal elder Margaret Dixon then presented five Aboriginal trainees
with plaques. Designed by Aboriginal community development officer, Kerry Avery,
the plaque represents the journey the trainees have traveled over the past 12 months.
A single flower near the head of a snake represents unity, while its stripes represent
the challenges the trainees faced on their journey. Two people represent various
negotiations; five flowers represent the trainees blossoming; and the people around
the outside represent elders from three Aboriginal communities watching over the
trainees during their journey.
July 5, 2003
Reporter Jim Pettit’s Telephone-Totem-Pole Dreams
FAYETTEVILLE, NC–Fayetteville Observor’s staff columnist Jim Pettit was
driving to work one morning when the big picture revealed itself to him. While waiting
for a stoplight to change, he imagined all Fayetteville’s power lines underground
and how the scenery would improve. "If you stop to think about it telephone
poles haven't changed much since they were telegraph poles." he says.
"Of course, not all telephone poles bear telephone wires. Many actually carry
power lines and pigeons, but we call them telephone poles anyway. Burying all power
and telephone lines would be a huge task. So is there anything much you can do with
a telephone pole other than paint it in bright colors?" Pettit intoned. "Perhaps
we should study how to replace them? What about erecting concrete poles molded in
the form of sculpture? Instead of driving along streets lined with unattractive treated
wood, we could drive on streets bordered by modern art."
The pace quickened. "If wood is a necessity, why not replace telephone poles
with totem poles? Totem poles, I think, got their name from Alaskan tribes who,
once they carved intricate faces and designs, had to tote 'em somewhere before they
could be erected." Pettit continued. "Our totem poles could be designed
with scenes of regional, state or national history carved into them. Historical figures
or those prominent in local government or development could also be featured."
He went on. "Remember during the Bicentennial when many cities painted fire
hydrants to resemble heroes of the American Revolution? Same deal. Can't you just
see a Marquis de Lafayette totem pole? Think how much fun residents and visitors
would have photographing totems."
"Just as I was really getting into the idea, the stoplight turned green. But
remember, you heard it here first," he added.
July 2, 2003
Vancouver wins 2010 Winter Olympics
VANCOUVER, BC–Vancouver recently won the right to host the 2010 Winter Games,
beating out Salzburg, Austria and Pyeongchang, South Korea in two rounds of balloting.
About 113 members of the International Olympic Committee voted in favour of Vancouver
by secret ballot after a final 45-minute presentation by each city.
Most events would take place in Vancouver, but skiing and other mountain sports would
be held more than 130 kilometres to the north at the popular ski resort town of Whistler.
The Vancouver 2010 Bid Corp. says the Games will have a budget of about $1.3-billion.
The event will also generate an estimated $1.3-billion in revenues from sponsorships,
television rights, merchandise sales and ticket sales. It is also expected to boost
the province’s languishing economy with thousands of new jobs and inject fresh life
into the hospitality and tourism sector. With First Nations actively supporting the
bid, it is hoped that the allocated money will spark the construction of new totem
poles and related monuments.
July 2, 2003
Washington State Sequoia to Become a Patriotic Totem Pole
LACEY, WA --Linda Matson was driving Sunday with her son, Tyson Woodruff, when
he commented on the tree towering over their former home. He said the current owners
would have to cut down the 120-foot giant sequoia before it took out the two-story
house. "I never had the heart to do it," she said.
On Tuesday, her son's words became reality as a crew began three days of work to
fell the tree, branch by branch, trunk segment by trunk segment. The tree is between
40 and 50 years old. Giant sequoias have been known to grow between 4 and 6 feet
a year in good soil. The tree's root system was threatening to deform the foundation
of the house that seven tenants call home
Jim Hartwell, who maintains the property, was also saddened by the loss. Hartwell
said he intends to have a totem pole carved from the remaining 8- to 10-foot trunk.
He's mulling a patriotic theme.
July 4, 2003
Lenape "Totem Pole" Vision Takes In The United Nations
NEWARK , NJ--As an artist, Wilmington College professor Marietta Dantonio-Fryer
of the Lenape Tribe said she has creative control of her dreams. But when she had
a vision of thousands of totem poles symbolizing peace and the survival of
American Indians and other indigenous people, she knew she was under its control.
"When it's a vision, it's like I don't have any control," said Dantonio-Fryer.
"Things that shouldn't be happening happen." The vision inspired Dantonio-Fryer,
her husband Rik and fellow Wilmington College art instructor Joel Keener to start
Totem Rhythms, a nonprofit group that builds totem poles and donates them to tribes
in the United States and indigenous groups throughout the world.
Their work became internationally recognized in 2001 at the United Nations World
Conference Against Racism. The totem poles have been displayed at the United Nations
Indigenous Peoples Conference and Exhibit the last three years.
Totem Rhythms members went to New York last month and, with the help of people from
more than 50 countries, created two poles of peace that will be on permanent display
at the United Nations building. "It was so beautiful to observe adults and children
speaking different languages, working together," said Dantonio-Fryer.
While the international recognition has been gratifying for Dantonio-Fryer, she said
it has been even more fulfilling to give back to indigenous people as a way of achieving
solidarity. Totem Rhythms' next project will be assembling a pole of peace this month
with wood donated by the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command in Virginia.
The group also will begin working with Wilmington College for a pole on campus this
John Nold, chairman of the information technology and advanced communication division
at Wilmington College, said the pole will have a spiritual impact for the campus
and also help promote the college. "We saw it as a natural fit to design aspects
of what we do," Nold said. He said the college plans on documenting the creation
of the pole and could establish a class on how to create totem poles for spiritual
Assembling the poles involves stripping the bark and chopping cherry, cedar, pine
and other trees into three sections. Rik Fryer said he does most of the wood preparation
by himself, a task that usually takes days. The poles are 7 to 10 feet tall and are
divided into the bottom, which represents a tribe's past; the middle, which is the
tribe's hope for the future; and the top, which shows the clan's symbol. Bears, snakes,
lizards and other animals represent tribal clans.
After the pole is finished, the designers celebrate with a prayer and ceremonial
feast. Dantonio-Fryer said the process of creating the pole is in line with American
Indian spiritual traditions. Other poles have been created for Cheyney University
and Lock Haven University, both in Pennsylvania.
As for her vision of thousands of poles representing peace and survival, Dantonio-Fryer
said her work is far from complete. However, the international demand for the totem
poles has given her and the other Totem Rhythm members the drive to continue. "Everything
has come together so fast," she said. "This has been so huge for us."
July 2, 2003
Future Uncertain For Well-Known Totem Pole
JASPER, ALBERTA- There is a chance Jasper* could lose its trademark totem
pole. Placed at the railway station to greet train and bus traffic, the pole
has stood in the national park since about 1919. But over the years cold winters
and wet weather have taken their toll. Pealing paint and rotting wood are readily
apparent, changing the pole from a symbol of First Nation’s heritage to a symbol
Efforts are being made to change that. The Haida pole, about 12-metres [36-feet]
high, came with the land when Parks Canada purchased the Heritage Railway Station
from CN Rail in 2000. "We’re undertaking preventative conservation to make sure
the structure is stable," said Rick Lair, a Winnipeg wood conservator, hired
by Parks to appraise the pole. "There’s details where water is getting in and
causing portions to cleave off. We want to stabilize that."
Though it is known that the pole, thought to be made of either yellow or red cedar,
was apparently carved by Chief Simeon Stilta, records of how the totem was acquired
from the west coast Haida have disappeared. "There’s no ownership paperwork
on the pole," said Rod Wallace, cultural resource specialist for Jasper Park.
"I tried through both the national and park archives, but there are no records.
We’re not prepared to fight them [the Haida] over the issue of ownership." Unless
some agreement can be reached, they may take it back.
"We’re trying to convince the Haida that it’s a significant cultural resource
for Jasper," said Wallace. "It may mean that we take down the pole and
bring in a Haida craftsman to work with us on it. "The desire of the coastal
band to see their cultural heritage accounted for and respectfully displayed has
led to discussions between Jasper Park Superintendent Ron Hooper and the band. The
discussions are expected to continue through next winter.
* Jasper, Alberta, Canada , along with the town of Banff, is located in the heart
of the Canadian Rockies.
Humvees Note the Cranberry Connector Road
TERRACE BC-Two local governments could be headed down the same road when it comes
to urging the province of British Columbia to take over the Cranberry Connector.
The connector is a bumpy logging road joining New Aiyansh in the Nass Valley north
of Terrace with Cranberry Junction on Highway 37. It was always a dusty, twisty drive
but [at least it was]passable when there was logging going on. With logging severely
cut back, there is no more regular maintenance on the road, turning the route into
a mass of potholes and bumps. "That road is in such horrible shape," New
Hazelton mayor Peter Weeber said. "You’ve gotta be awful desperate and have
a good vehicle. I recommend a Hummer." He and other northwest leaders are reluctant
to send tourists along the road, which due to a number of significant totem poles
and cultural sites could be part of a circle tour of totem poles in the Nass
Valley, Gitanyow and Hazelton.
June 22, 2003
Hoonah Native Village Looks To Tourism
HOONAH, ALASKA--Battered by downturns in logging and fishing, the Tlingit village
of Hoonah is banking on cruise ship tourism to revive the town's stagnant economy.
The local Native corporation, Huna Totem, and its business partners have successfully
wooed two large industry players to the Southeast coastal village. Starting next
summer, 2004, Royal Caribbean International and its sister company, Celebrity Cruises,
will send vessels to Hoonah, 50 miles west of Juneau in Icy Straits. The ships will
make 26 to 30 stops in Alaska's largest Tlingit village from May to September, offloading
thousands of passengers and crew members at a scenic point about a mile from [the
actual] town, said Michael Sheehan, a spokesman for Miami-based Royal Caribbean.
On May 11, 2004, Celebrity Cruises' Mercury will steam into Hoonah, on the north
end of Chichagof Island about 40 miles southwest of Juneau. Project marketers have
named the destination "Port Icy Strait."
"The Native American involvement and history in that area would clearly be of
interest to our guests," Sheehan said. "If anything, it'll be the epitome
of the Alaskan wilderness experience." There are presently about four traditional
totem poles in the village of Hoonah, though they are apparently not on the
According to a McDowell Group report completed in May, when the facilities open next
spring, they will generate 298 direct year-round and seasonal jobs and 89 indirect
year-round and seasonal jobs, bringing in an annual payroll of $3.5 million in wages.
In 2008, when the destination is slated to reach full capacity, it will offer 603
direct jobs and 241 indirect jobs bringing in a payroll of $9.6 million.
A theater and cultural center is being built next to the [presently abandoned] Hoonah
cannery by the Point Sophia Development Co. with the traditional design on the building
created by David Williams and painted by Jimmy Marks and Ray Peck. As the main attraction,
the Cannery will also include a working display of machinery dating to the early
days of commercial fish processing in Alaska, said construction manager Jon Kveum.
June 20, 2003
Island Council Commits $12K to Portal Posts
SAN JUAN ISLANDS, WA- The Portals of Welcome Committee is $12,000 closer to its
goal. Friday Harbor Town Council agreed to give that amount of lodging tax revenue
towards the purchase and installation of two Coast Salish House Posts. The
offer is good for two years and contingent on the rest of an estimated $50,000 in
cost being raised separately. The Port of Friday Harbor is providing a waterfront
location for the posts.
The project came about after Council member Marrett and a group of friends saw two
17-foot-tall posts in [famous] artist Susan Point's studio in Vancouver [BC]. The
group thought the posts would look good in Friday Harbor and believed they would
promote tourism. Marrett said, "Susan Point is Coast Salish. She is from the
Musqueam band, which are [our] northern neighbors. The posts are carved in the Coast
During previous discussions, questions were raised over whether the posts were representative
of the local [San Juan Island] tribes or of [more] northern tribes that merely made
slave raids to the San Juan Islands. Marrett said, "There is a tremendous amount
of rivalry over who was [residing more or less full time] in the San Juan Islands.
The Musqueam were not [residing permanently] in the San Juan Islands, which I think
She said the committee has been asked why not use work from local tribes. "The
answer is if you do that, you will have hard feelings from other tribes. If someone
[local] gives you a gift of house posts you don’t have any say over the art work
[quality]. The thing that got us excited about these posts is they are fantastic
art work [in their own right] and [they] happen to be [excellent Northwest Coast]
Native [style] at the same time. If you have something done as a gift it may not
be a good piece of art."
According to experts, the artist's tribe is part of the larger Salish [language]
grouping which encompasses local tribes. Barsh explained that [various] Coast Salish
tribes have lived in the San Juans for more than 8,000 years. He said the Coast Salish
art is round [in shape] while Northwest Coast art is square [-ish]. The Northwest
Coast tribes were more "aristocratic," he said. "they came in here
to do slave raids."
June 14, 2003
Carver Frank Fulmer Completes Journey with his Mother
JUNEAU AK- As the closing day of the cultural tour on Glacier Bay cruiseline's
one-week adventure cruise drew to an end, Frank Fulmer, noted Tlingit artist, helped
his frail mother descend from the ship to spend the following day at Glacier Bay
Lodge. There he continued to demonstrate his paddle-carving skills to interested
onlookers. Fulmer and his 78-year-old mom took the cruise to interact with passengers,
including Pat Kramer, Totem Pole book author, and to dedicate a special button blanket
while in Glacier Bay, the historic home of his mother's People. During the ship's
crossing through Glacier Bay, at the foot of Marjorie Glacier, Frank stood next to
his mother respectfully dressed in the plain button blanket robe. The active glacier
seemed to respond with several dramatic ice cave-ins adding to the magic of the moment.
The blanket will appear behind Fulmer's carving Eagle Dancer, scheduled to
go on display in Seattle galleries and later to tour China in three or four years
time along with more of Fulmers' and other Master Carvers' works.
June 15, 2003
Tulalips welcome First Salmon
TULALIP BAY, WA- More than 500 people from the Tulalip Tribes welcomed Haik
Saib Yo Bouch -- "Big Chief King Salmon" in the native Lushootseed
language, from Tulalip Bay Saturday in a colorful, smoky, drum-pounding ceremony..
Each year, the Tulalips celebrate the return of the first king salmon caught by giving
it a ceremony that includes dividing the fish as part of a grand meal. Standing next
to a circle of drummers and dancers between two fires in a longhouse filled with
tribal members and guests, tribal leaders Stan Jones and Glen Gobin recounted the
tradition. "The story of is that Big Chief King Salmon is a scout for the salmon
people," Gobin said. "They [once]gave us life that sustained us through
"It all depends on how well Big Chief King Salmon is treated," Jones said.
"When we return his remains to the salmon village out in the sea, he'll go to
the [underwater] village and come to life again … and tell the other salmon how well
he was treated."
"And if we do well," Gobin said, "he will send the rest of his people."
After singing a Snohomish war song and the Eagle-Owl-Kiki song, all fishers present
received a blessing via a feather dipped in water. Then a young boy announced the
arrival of the honored guest. Singers and drummers led a procession around the longhouse
and out to the nearby beach. The crowd waited while two long ceremonial war canoes
-- one from the Tulalips and one from the Suquamish Tribe -- paddled in from the
center of the bay.
Big Chief [the first salmon] was with them. Jones welcomed both him and the paddling
teams. The Suquamish canoe representative thanked their hosts with a solo drum song.
Then two men carried the first salmon of the year back into the longhouse and onto
a platform festooned with sprigs of salmonberry, cedar and ferns. After the "Happy
Song", the crowd retired to the community center for a salmon-dinner.
Checking out the Big Chief during dinner, Mel Sheldon, a tribal board member, spoke.
"Yesterday he [Big Salmon] was rubbing his belly in the bay," Sheldon said.
One day later, tribal members were rubbing their bellies in appreciation for the
salmon sacrificing its life.
June 8, 2003
Gathering Fosters Unity Among Northwest Woodcarvers
OLYMPIA, WA--Curls of yellow cedar fell to the floor as Ralph Bennett scraped at
the totem pole. "I'm shaping it," Bennett explained, "It's the hardest
part." He took another swipe with the block plane and stopped to suck in some
air. The totem's bear and three carvers will represent body, mind and spirit. "My
grandmother taught me that everything has a spirit," he said. "As artists,
we get to bring that which is invisible into view."
Bennett, member of the Haida, said his totem pole will commemorate the contributions
of woodcarvers. "I'm hoping some unity could come from this," he said.
Bennett was among 15 featured artists at the First Gathering of Northwest Native
Wood Carvers at Evergreen State College. The American Indian artists, many of
whom have displays in major museums, demonstrated their tools and techniques to the
In addition to totem poles, artists were carving plaques, paddles and rattles and
painting traditional masks using knowledge passed down from generation to generation.
Some, like Squaxin Island tribe member Andrea Wilbur-Sigo, were self-taught. Using
a straight knife on a spindle whorl, she is the first woman carver in her family,
a family she can trace back seven generations. The woodcarvers' gathering was good
for networking, she said. "It's helpful for artists to get together and share
resources and techniques."
Though the carvers had to compete with the sunny weather for attention, though many
visitors still dropped in. Debra Wilson of Olympia came because of her lifelong interest
in American Indian art. "I think it's very beautiful, and the fact that they
are preserving their culture is very important," she said.
Rep. Sandra Romeo, D-Olympia, also visited the exhibition. "I don't know enough
about Northwestern Indian art, and the stuff just takes my breath away," she
said. "It's beautiful.
June 8, 2003
Totem Viewing Vacation Hot Spot
OTTAWA, CANADA-The hot stop in Ottawa this summer is the stunning Canadian Museum
of Civilization with its Grand Hall of 43 authentic totem poles and this year's
acclaimed special exhibit, "The Mysterious Bog People," which runs through
Sept. 1. Call 1-800-555-5621 or visit www.civilization.ca. Museum folks say that
most first-time visitors spend about three hours, but it would take three days to
see the entire museum.
June 7, 2003
British Museum Holds Onto Its Haida Totem Pole
LONDON--The British Museum turns 250 today-- an 18th-century institution determined
to shine a light on the 21st. One of the great achievements of the Age of Reason,
the museum was founded in 1753 by a burgeoning imperial power as a place where British
artifacts could sit alongside treasures and trophies from countries around the world.
The world's first national public museum was founded by an act of Parliament on June
7, 1753, with a bequest of 70,000 objects from collector Sir Hans Sloane and a mandate
to admit "all studious and curious Persons." It acquired its first Egyptian
mummy in 1756 and opened to the public in 1759 in a 17th-century mansion in London's
Bloomsbury district. The first staff consisted of a librarian, six curators, a porter,
a messenger, two watchmen and four maids.
Today the museum fills a vast Neoclassical building on the original site, has 7 million
objects including a Haida totem pole, 1,000 staff, and attracts 5 million
visitors a year.
May 28, 2003
Goldbelt Alaska Native Corporation Selling Cruise Business
ANCHORAGE--Goldbelt Inc., a Juneau-based Alaska Native corporation, is selling
its regional cruise ship subsidiary. The corporation, which has several tourism businesses,
lost $4.4 million in 2001.
Then last year, that loss ballooned to $18 million, though $14 million of that was
due to the writedown of its investment in Glacier Bay Cruiseline, according to Gary
Droubay, Goldbelt's president and chief executive.
An agreement to sell the regional cruise line is in the final stages, Droubay told
the Alaska Journal of Commerce. "We have signed a letter of intent to sell,
by all parties, very close to definitive agreement," Droubay said. He declined
to name the buyer because of confidentiality agreements.
"Without the losses of the cruise line in 2003, and depending on how the tour
season pans out, the corporation could see a substantial improvement," and be
close to breaking even this year, said Droubay.
Although it is selling Glacier Bay Cruiseline, which operates four overnight cruise
ships in Southeast Alaska, Goldbelt will retain its concession with the National
Park Service to operate a lodge and day-cruise vessel in Glacier Bay, Droubay said.
Glacier Bay Cruiseline, with revenues of $1.7 million in 2001 and $7.5 million in
2002, operates overnight cruises in Southeast, taking passengers to places such as
Admiralty Island and Tracy Arm. Here they can see wildlife, take excursions in kayaks
or Zodiacs or see totem poles in remote Alaskan villages.
"It's an adventure-tourism product and it has had wide appeal, but our company
doesn't have the financial strength to market it properly," Droubay said. The
new buyer will have that capability, he said, and Goldbelt intends to partner with
the company with joint sales through its other visitor-related businesses.
Meanwhile, the corporation is making progress on a major tourism development project
on its lands at Hobart Bay, south of Juneau.
Goldbelt is working with international investors on providing facilities for cruise
ships for a day stop at Hobart Bay, and eventually hopes to develop overnight accommodations
there, Droubay said.
In addition to selling the cruise line operation, Goldbelt has restructured debt
on the Mount Roberts Tramway, a popular visitor attraction in Juneau. The tram operates
through the summer carrying visitors to a small visitor center for sightseeing and
hikes at the 1,800-foot level of Mount Roberts.
The tram had a good year in 2001 but 2002 saw a dropoff in volumes due mainly to
post-Sept. 11 effects on tourism, said Joanne Wiita, Goldbelt's marketing director.
Independent visitors were fewer and the cruise ship passengers who visited spent
less money while ashore, Wiita said.
Droubay said the tram's original business plan overestimated the number of people
it would attract and underestimated costs of construction.
April 17, 2003
Shotridge to Finish Carving Sun Raven Pole
SEATTLE,WA- Israel Shotridge will finish an 18-foot
totem pole at the Burke Museum in front of an audience over the next three
Shotridge, born and raised in southeast Alaska in
the Tongass National Forest, is a member of the Tlingit Bear clan. Among his commissions
have been totem poles, relief panels, masks, canoes, bentwood boxes and artifact
replicas. He studied at the Totem Heritage Center, in Ketchikan, Alaska, from 1975
to 1990, apprenticing under Tlingit master carver Nathan Jackson from 1982 to 1985.
His apprentices carry on the tradition of learning from a master in part because
Shotridge himself learned from a master. Though he has only been carving for about
20 years considerably less than many American-Indian artists the Alaska State Council
on the Arts presented Shotridge with the title of Master In The Arts Of Carving And
The carving takes place every Wednesday and Saturday
in four-hour sessions beginning at noon. It s not hard for me to create while people
are standing around watching, said Shotridge. Nearly every pole I 've carved has
been in front of an audience.
The pole, a replication of a Tlingit Sun Raven mortuary
pole, was transported from Shotridge s studio on Vashon Island and brought to the
Burke yesterday afternoon. According to Shotridge, it took at least 10 men to lift
the pole and place it onto two dollies in order to move it inside the museum. When
the pole is completed, it will be placed permanently in a park in Ketchikan, Alaska.
Shotridge started carving the pole in 1997 but has not touched it since then. While
serving on the planning committee for the Burke s Out of Silence exhibit, Shotridge
offered to finish the pole on site.
The pole depicts three adventures of the Sun Raven,
according to Burke Museum Director George MacDonald. At the top is the Raven with
his wings outstretched and a halo around his head. On his chest are three children
of the sun, who the Sun Raven, according to Tlingit legend, visited during the great
In the middle of the pole is the face of the Frog
Woman who brought salmon to the Earth and at the bottom is a Frog guiding Raven to
These oral legends can last in a specific tribe
for over 10,000 years, said MacDonald. The idea of showing the process as an ongoing
tradition is something of interest to the public.
For photos of Shotridge s earlier Raven-totem-works
go to: http://www.shotridgestudios.com/totems/sunraven.htm or http://www.sitnews.org/0602news/062702_totem.html
For photos of the partially finished Burke Museum-totem
go to: http://www.kathryncramer.com/wblog/archives/000055.html
April 15, 2003
Field Museum about to give back Haida Remains
CHICAGO - When the Field Museum of Natural History
hands over the bones of 156 native Haida people to a tribe in British
Columbia (Canada) in October, it will become one of only three major museums to extend
the U.S. repatriation law outside the country. Like facilities across the country,
the Field has returned dozens of items requested by Native American tribes in the
The U.S. repatriation law requires that (if requested
by the 564 federally recognized Native American tribes), museums must return four
types of artifacts. These include: human remains, funeral objects, communal property
or ceremonial materials. But, of major museums, only the Smithsonian and the Museum
of Natural History in New York had previously turned over items to indigenous people
from other countries.
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation
Act does not require that museums turn over materials to international tribes, and
that's what sets apart the Field. The Haida bones being returned to Canada are mostly
skulls dug up during an early 1900s expedition on the West Coast in the Queen Charlotte
Islands. The Field had held onto these bones as part of an effort to understand cultures
that were believed to be near extinction. The remains were never on display.
"We didn't have to return these remains, said
Jonathan Haas, the museum's field archeologist. "But we're not interested in
a fight over ownership. We are interested in doing the right thing in regard to human
remains. The principle of returning human beings to descendants is a good principle."
"It's huge," said Karenne Wood, repatriation
coordinator at the Association on American Indian Affairs in Washington. "They
are going beyond what the law requires."
Tribal organizations and others are praising the
Field for focusing on the spirit instead of the letter of the law.
In 2001, the museum returned a popular and
treasured 26-foot totem pole to the Tlingit Native American nation. And
sacred items have been returned to Native Hawaiians and communities in Alaska and
"We're losing objects," acknowledged Haas. "But they are objects that
didn't ever belong to the museum."
April 4, 2003
Carvings On Display
EDMONDS, WA-- A display of works by American Indian
master carver Ralph Bennett is on view this month at the Frances Anderson Center,
700 Main St., Edmonds.
Bennett is a sixth-generation Haida Indian who loves
sharing his culture and encourages others to learn about their own cultures. Bennett,
who began carving as a young child, comes from a long line of wood carvers who designed
totem poles, canoes, paddles, masks, headdresses and staffs. For nearly three decades
he has been creating and sharing traditional Haida storytelling and carving.
For more on Bennett s work go to:http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/neighbors/redmond/scene10.html
April 4, 2003
Lawmakers to Cut Alaska s Arts Funding
JUNEAU AK-- Some legislators are seeking to abolish
the state's public art program, which has paid for projects like the Tlingit
totem poles in front of the Anchorage courthouse and the collection of Eskimo
art and dolls in glass cases at the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport.
The state's 28-year-old Percent for Art Program
requires one percent of the state's construction cost for buildings, plus school
buildings to be set aside for buying and installing art. In rural schools, the portion
is one-half percent. But the state faces tough times, and some believe the time has
come for the program to go. Chugiak Republican Rep. Bill Stoltze is pushing the measure,
House Bill 215, along with co-sponsors Mike Hawker of South Anchorage and Peggy Wilson
of Wrangell, both Republicans.
But the art program does appear to have an important
backer in Rep. Bruce Weyrauch, R-Juneau. Stoltze's bill sits in the committee Weyrauch
chairs, and Weyrauch could bury it or push for a compromise. "One percent (for
art) is something that adds to our makeup and composition as a society," Weyrauch
said in an interview.
"To me it's soul food, it's contagious creativity,"
testified Anchorage artist Duke Russell. "Our city is already suffering from
homogeneity ... the franchises and the superstores." It gives artists the money
to showcase their work to the public.
Anchorage Democrat Ethan Berkowitz, the House minority
leader and a member of the committee, said it is vital to keep the program. "It
boils down to a question of who we are," he said.
The city of Anchorage also has a city program, unaffected
by the state legislation program, that requires money to be set aside for art on
For a photo of the Totems at the Federal Courthouse
in Anchorage scroll down at: http://www.op.net/~rkane/Alaska/anch.htm
April 2, 2003
Aboriginal artist Art Thompson dies at 54
VICTORIA, B.C. -- Canadian artist Art Thompson,
acclaimed for revitalizing the arts of his Nuu-chah-nulth nation, has died after
a four-month bout with cancer. He was 54.
Thompson, a member of the Ditidaht First Nation,
was considered a master in the free-form style of the Nuu-chah-nulth. A noted carver
and silversmith, he was an innovator in serigraphy - making a print by the silk-screen
method - and brought new colors and original subject matter to the medium. He combined
mediums such as wood and silver in sculptural forms of frontlets, masks and crest
hats. In the 1970s, he began engraving silver and gold and was considered the foremost
Nuu-chah-nulth jeweler at that time.
By the end of the decade, he was carving numerous
totem poles and panels for Canada and the United States. "He was one of the
most significant artists of the northwest coast," artist John Livingston told
the Victoria Times Colonist. "He was a champion."
Thompson also contributed to his community as a
singer, ceremonial dancer and tribal band leader.
His commissions include work for the 1994 Commonwealth
Games in Victoria, and the British Columbia Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs.
In 2000, he received the National Aboriginal Achievement
To view samples of Thompson s works:http://www.stoningtongallery.com/coming_thompson.htm
March 31, 2003
Totem Carvers Not Needed
BRONX ZOO, NY- Six months ago, Joseph Werner had
his own special day in The Bronx. He and other Monterey County officials delivered
a gift to the people of New York City. The gift, in his honor, a "healing
totem pole" carved by participants in his One Voice Arts and Leadership
Program, was presented during a ceremony honoring those who died in the Sept. 11
The Sept. 5 presentation at the Bronx Zoo was the
definite high point for Werner's arts program, intended to bring culture, work experience
and paychecks to disadvantaged youths in Monterey County. For a county grand jury
recently contended that the bureaucracy supporting that arts program was laden with
conflicts of interest that may have kept federal job training dollars from reaching
thousands of local youths. County officials took Werner's program away from him earlier
this month following the damning grand jury report issued in January.
Grand jurors and other critics of Werner's program
say they believe the approximately $900,000 spent last year to support the arts and
leadership program could have been better spent teaching more kids skills that would
help them get jobs as adults.
"There really is not a lot of demand in the
job market for totem pole carvers and muralists," said one of the critics, Salinas
Mayor Anna Caballero. "If I see any more of those murals I'm going to die,"
said Cheryl Ward-Kaiser, a member of the Workforce Investment Board, the local agency
that directs federal funding to youth programs in the county.
"People see those murals and it's motherhood
and apple pie," said Monterey County Probation Director Duane Tanner. "They
do a great job for 30 or 40 young people. But wouldn't it be better to do a good
job with 1,000 youths?"
Werner, 51, blinded 17 years ago as a result of
a hit-and-run motorcycle accident, has been characteristically diplomatic about the
recent turn of events in his professional life. Werner refuses to bad-mouth the grand
jury and the report. His formal response, submitted two weeks ago, calmly countered
many of the grand jury's findings. He says his agency tries to work with other community
groups to combine resources and services. "I really don't understand where the
criticism comes from," he said. "We're really proud of what we do. The
arts program has become a national model that others are trying to emulate. We've
never been afraid of designing projects that youth will actually be interested in
participating in and that they can learn from."
Nevertheless, the proposed budget for the arts and
leadership program in the coming year has been slashed from $900,000 to about $220,000.
For photos of the 2002 Healing Totem Pole ceremony
and mural go to: http://www.healingpole.org/journey/ny_ceremony.htm
March 14, 2003
S'klallam Tribe Sets Sights On $4.3m Project
PORT GAMBLE, NORTH KITSAP, WASHINGTON STATE- Groundbreaking is set for April 16.
A North Kitsap tribe is building a new $4.3 million including a library, elders center
and educational center. While major funding for the S'Klallam Tribe House of Knowledge
is provided by Department on Housing and Urban Development, plus the National Park
Service, the local, Kitsap County, Kitsap Regional Library, North Kitsap School District,
Town & County Markets and others are also engaged in an ongoing fund-raising
drive. Many tribal employees are having contributions deducted from their paychecks
for the endeavor, said Marie Hebert, tribal secretary and cultural resource director.
Giant firs now being harvested nearby will form
the skeleton of the structure, with cedar siding added later said architect Ray Johnston
of Johnston Architects of Seattle. "The musculature of this building is beautiful
-- quite massive"
The shed-like structure will face west. Large, carved
doors will open to a cavernous, 6,722-square-foot interior. Traditional powwows,
storytelling, performances and ceremonies will take place against a 20-by-12-foot
carved screen painted black and red. The long house will display artifacts, art and
photographs in climate-controlled areas while doors in the rear open to a sunken
seating area where visitors can listen and watch the sun setting over the bay. Totem
poles will dot the surrounding grounds. The totems and screen were made
by Tsimshian master carver David Boxley and tribal carvers Lloyd Fulton, Gene Jones
Sr., Bill Jones Sr., Jake Jones, Ben Ives Sr. and Joe Ives Sr. The screen is presently
on display at the Burke Museum in Seattle.
March 13, 2003
Florida Museum to Display Rarely Viewed
GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Many selections from a little known collection of 19th and early
20th century American Indian art will be on exhibit for the public for the first
time in 40 years at the Florida Museum of Natural History. Beginning March 22, "The
Pearsall Collection of American Indian Art: 40th Anniversary" will honor collector
Leigh Morgan Pearsall, as well as the University of Florida s acquisition of the
collection in 1963. The collection consists of more than 3,000 objects, including
400 baskets, nearly 600 argillite carvings, 19 totem poles and many
other important and unique objects. Over 200 of the finest examples of the collection
will be displayed, including a rare Subarctic Chipewyan shoulder bag from 1820-1830,
made of hide and adorned with porcupine quill designs, as well as an equally rare
Chilkat robe from the Northwest Coast. The Florida Museum of Natural History is Florida
s state natural history museum.
March 14, 2003
Commissioners Approve Projects
ULSTER TOWNSHIP, BRADFORD COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA -Ulster Township is set to receive
$3000 for the removal of slum or blight that will help lead to the restoration of
the Ulster Totem Pole--a kind of totem pole where Native Americans gathered near
what is now a Steuben County village.
March 11, 2003
Large Purchase of Aboriginal Art
OTTAWA The Canada Council Art Bank, home to the largest collection of contemporary
Canadian art in the world, has purchased 71 works representing art by 61 First Nations,
Metis and Inuit artists. The collection is valued at $150,000. In addition to paintings,
drawings, prints, photographs, sculptures, weaving, appliqués and dolls. is
a totem pole by Gitxsan sculptor Walter Harris, an Arts Canada winner
of the 2003 Governor General's Awards in Visual and Media Arts. The works will be
unveiled to the public at an open house on March 29. The Art Bank houses some 18,000
paintings, prints, photographs and sculptures by over 2,500 artists. It has over
6,400 works rented to more than 200 government and corporate clients.
March 11, 2003
Totem Raised on Bennachie
NORTH SCOTLAND- Aberdeenshire's Bennachie hill was to host the ceremonial raising
of a traditional totem pole created last year by a team of visiting
Canadian craftsmen, Squamish Nation carvers from the province of British Columbia.
About 60 people gathered to witness the 8ft carving being raised. The totem pole
features carvings of osprey and salmon, in homage to the nearby River Don.
March 11, 2003
Totem Poles, Standing Tall
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON --Indian tribes in South Carolina
and Florida produce them for tourists and collectors, but totem poles belong to the
far Northwest. The rich, regional heritage of this now ubiquitous symbol of Native
American culture was described by former Times colleague Ross Anderson in the March
2 "Pacific Northwest" magazine. That's a handy primer for a popular exhibit
at the Burke Museum on the University of Washington campus.
The oldest of the totem poles come
from three tribes in British Columbia and Alaska. Old totems had different purposes
but many displayed the symbols of a family in the same way heraldic crests were used
Totem poles also identify the status and clan of
a dwelling's occupants. Others tell the blended histories of a husband and wife.
Memorial poles celebrate the life of a deceased chief or relative.
By the late 19th century and into the 20th century,
the carver's art was spread by traders, travelers, missionaries and government agents.
Totems were an artistic marvel, and their lucrative appeal was not lost on other
As totem poles spread, their communal role diminished
closest to home. Curator Robin Wright uses photographs to chronicle the decline and
revival of the art form in villages over decades.
The Burke exhibit tells a story that reveals Native
artistry still standing tall.
"Out of the Silence: The Enduring Power of
Totem Poles" features samples from the museum's own collection, and a photographic
exhibit that tracks the revival of the art form in Northwest Coast Indian culture.
March 10, 2003
Returning Totem Teddy
GREELEY, COLORADO- The University of Northern Colorado is preparing to return Totem
Teddy the totem pole that inspired the UNC Bears mascot to the Tlingit tribe
in Alaska. The UNC Alumni Association would like to have a member of the Tlingit
tribe carve first carve a replica. Recently, they received a response from the tribe
s representative, Harold Jacobs. Clan members suggested that, none of the lower story
figures be copied, Jacobs wrote in his e-mail. That could mean only the bear and
the top part of the pole could be copied.
March 10, 2003
Old trees to be Turned into War Memorial
CALGARY, ALBERTA - Plans are underway to hire professional wood carvers to turn dozens
of Calgary's oldest trees into war memorial totem poles . The trees were planted
80 years ago as a legacy to Canadian soldiers who fought in the First World War.
But the towering poplars that line the street of Memorial Drive are dead or dying
and will be cut down next week.
Darlene Grundy, an art designer who spearheaded
the campaign to memorialize the trees, said it was important for her to preserve
that part of Calgary's history. "I own a graphics design company. I love the
arts and I said there has to be something that should be done in order to keep the
spirit of these trees," she said.
Professional wood carver Richard St. Pierre has
been surveying several of the trees for the integrity of the wood and believes the
project will work. "Hopefully the city will bring them down, store them and
they would be put away and we would work on them," he said.
City planners, who like the proposal, are asking
the public for input into the design of the carvings. The most popular suggestion
is the representation of a soldier in the First World War.
February 28, 2003
Tree is Center of Silk Town Tribute
EAST ANGLIA, ENGLAND- A dead tree has been brought
back to life to form a stunning totem pole tribute to a town's reputation of being
the capital of the British silk weaving industry. Silk from Sudbury sells all round
the world, and now the town's skyline is telling the story in the form of a tree
carved to depict aspects of the craft. From the remains of a 100-year-old Monterey
Cypress tree, Suffolk-born sculptor Ben Platts-Mills, of Eye, has completed a three-month
project to tell the story of silk from the humble moth to finished garment. Backed
by sponsorship of £7,000, the 23-ft tall work of art is set to become a tourist
attraction, the tree is on council land. situated beside one of the main roads into
town. As an art college work experience person a decade earlier, Miss Parker had
undertaken duties at Gainsborough Silks, one of the town's three silk fabric manufacturers
that employ a total of 300 people. She commented: "I wanted to feature a traditional
industry that is still very much alive. The design of the tree commences from the
top with a moth with its wings spread, and at the bottom there is a woman wearing
a silk dress. Babergh chairman Sue Carpendale said: "I believe the sculpture
will become a source of pride for local people and a must-see sight for tourists."
February 27, 2003
Participation-Totem in New Brunswick
BATHURST, N.B.--Canadians are invited to show their national pride by taking part
in the creation of a nine-metre high totem pole that will travel,
in three pieces, to 14 fairs and events throughout the country. Made from a 540-year-old
red cedar from Masset, B.C., it will allow Canadians the chance to carve a small
piece of a totem pole while watching the artist at work. They also get to bring home
a memory bag.
"The more I travel the more I realize how lucky
you are to be in Canada," said Daniel Richer, the official town crier for Ontario
and ambassador for the Canada Pavilion, part of the Winter (Sports) Games. So I was
looking for a way to promote the unity thing."
Richer, who is part Abenakis, has traveled the world
as a town crier since 1981, winning competitions in the U.S., Australia, Bermuda
and England. One of only three full-time town criers in North America, he has turned
his love of history into a role that has seen him work in 20 different languages
and introduce several world leaders. "I wanted something that would unite people&
something beautiful and strong and long lasting. I thought this was the ideal way
because it wasn't French and it wasn't English but it was all-Canadian. When you
read a totem pole, the designer and the people who are asked to make a totem pole
know the original story, but the rest of us when we see it we all find something
that appeals to us.
Reg Davidson, a world-renown Haida carver from coastal
B.C. was the main designer of the totem, but Mr. Richer said those who visit the
Canada Pavilion are crafting it. "(Reg) came up with the different characters,"
said the former actor who can cry at 110 decibels. "My interpretation is that
he chose a symbol that represented the people of the sky and the people of the ground
and the people of the water. The Abenakis way is that everything we touch we leave
part of our energy and we take part of the energy. So to me people are not only carving
the totem, they are leaving part of their spirits with the totem."
Richer said he hopes that more than 200,000 people
will have made their mark on the totem pole by the time it is finished in about a
month. The Canada Pavilion is set up in the Bathurst Youth Center until the end of
the Canada Winter Games on March 8.
February 26, 2003
Woman honored with Totem
KAKE AK- Residents recently raised a totem to show appreciation for longtime
teacher, On Feb. 8, friends and family in Kake thanked 90-year-old former teacher,
Mona Catherine Jackson, for her devotion to the village with the raising of a Hummingbird
Raven totem pole carved in her honor."The totem pole is the best one
I ever saw yet," she said. "It's beautiful. I think it's got my face on
it, too." Jackson was born into a Haida family in Massett, B.C., in 1913 and
moved to Hydaburg, on Prince of Wales Island, in 1923. She attended the Sheldon Jackson
School in Sitka until 1935 and was a student at the Ashville Normal School for Teachers
in Ashville, N.C., until 1939. Upon graduating from college, she took a job teaching
school in Kake, about 90 miles south of Juneau. She taught there for 30 years, retiring