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Home  >  Digital Archives  >  People of the North  >  Native Peoples

The major Native group in Southeast Alaska is Tlingit, a tribe with a highly structured society divided into two moieties, with many clans and subclans within each. Their traditional homeland is rainforest, mountain, and sea, and extends into Yukon and British Columbia. Clan members identify their group through the use of animal symbols in regalia, jewelry, masks, totems and clan house carvings. Clan membership is passed from mother to child. For centuries, Tlingit people have observed strict societal rules in choosing a marriage partner, planning and celebrating potlatches, handling of the dead, and honoring each other. Totem poles are commonly associated with this group, even though they also are carved by other Alaskan coastal peoples -- the Haida and Tsimshian. Tlingit people also are known for their craftsmanship in weaving Chilkat blankets and Raven's Tail robes, and for dancing, singing and storytelling.


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Gallery of Images
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Tlingit funeral monuments
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Interior, Thlingit [Tlingit] Community House
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A summer on the Thetis, 1888

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