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Alaska's Incredible Totem Poles (part II)

  • Posted Aug. 16, 2009 by Betty Viewed 19378 times

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Native art and culture flourishes in Ketchikan, Alaska,due to the large population of native Alaskans. The three indigenous Pacific Northwest Indian tribes are the Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian who considered the areas throughout Northern British Columbia and Southeast Alaska their territory.
Ketchikan is home to the world’s largest collection of totem poles.Two miles south from Ketchikan is Saxman Village. Its totem park boasts the single largest collection of totems including the famed Abraham Lincoln pole and the Seward “shame” pole.
In a beautiful cove eight miles north of Ketchikan is Totem Bight State Park, where an historic collection of totems and a native community house can be visited.

Check out Tiffany's blog for more Haida/Tlingit art.
Haida/Tlingit art [photoblog.com]

Lesson totem pole
This pole tells the story of a young boy who ignored warnings about putting his hand into holes in the rocks. He was trapped by a giant clam and drowned.

Abraham Lincoln totem pole
This pole was carved when Abraham Lincoln was the United States President. Tlingit civil rights attorney William Paul wrote in Alaska Journal magazine that this is most likely a “first white man” crest used to indicate that the pole owners' ancestors saw the first white man and claimed them as their clan crest.

William Seward totem pole
When Seward visited, he promised to return with gifts, and this pole was erected in his honor. When he failed to make good on his promise, the ears and mouth were painted red as a sign of stinginess.

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    There are 18 comments, add yours!

    • # Neil

      Thanks for the vacation to alaska, great set ! how many were there at the site ? or was this all of them ? cd

      2009.08.22 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Marsha

      Oh wow....how did I miss the totem pole sets? The photos themselves are incredible...beautiful colors and so much interest! The stories and history are intriguing. I really like #14 and the angle in #19!

      2009.08.21 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Smitha

      wow, these are magnificent! never seen one myself, thank you for sharing:)

      2009.08.18 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Brian

      Wonderful set! Great totem poles. I love #2, I've never seen one like that before.

      2009.08.17 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Robel Narte

      Oh wow ! very nice set..you did capture it so well the details are perfect, clean , crisp and clear images.....very unusual artifacts..thank you so much for sharing my friend..
      Best regards,

      2009.08.17 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Jon

      This is truly art. I would say some of the pieces are quite humorous.

      2009.08.17 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Judith

      These are awesome photos! I love the views that show the shapes used in Native American art! These are fun to look at and each time I go through them I see something new. Great job!

      2009.08.17 Edited Reply Cancel

    • # Leslie

      Sooo cool. And a new reason I want to go to Alaska. Before, it was only for the hot, single, antisocial guys. Oh, and the nature stuff. Heh.

      2009.08.16 Edited Reply Cancel