Alaskan Native Villages
Fairbanks is a good jumping off place for learning about
Alaska Native Peoples are divided into eleven distinct cultures,
speaking twenty different languages. there are five cultural groupings
which draw upon cultural similarities and geographic proximity. Alaska
Natives are about 16% of the Alaskan population and are the majority in
about 200 Native Villages in the state.
The Native cultures of Alaska are both similar and diverse. The
strong influence of Alaska’s varied environments formed ties between the
people and the land, helping to develop unique legends, customs, and
subsistence lifestyles in harmony with the specific area where they
Native people had great respect for the spirit of each living thing.
Respect and cooperation among village members helped to guarantee
the survival of the people.
They were all basically hunters and food gatherers. Rivers, lakes
and the ocean were major passageways, and all cultures included some variety
of water transportation. Most groups were not really nomadic, but
their subsistence lifestyle meant they had to be able to travel great
distances. Almost all groups lived in permanent winter villages, but
moved to fish camps on the rivers in the summer. Most depended
heavily upon fish and marine life for subsistence. Land mammals were
also used for food and clothing, and they supplemented their diet
with vegetation such as mushrooms, seaweed, and a many kinds of
Language and culture boundaries between Alaska Native groups are
distinct, and reflect the nature of the respective culture. (map to come)
Once an important gold rush town, Nome is still the largest town on Alaska's
west coast with approximately 4500 people). It is located less than 200 miles from Russia,
across the Bering Straight. Nome is a popular stop for tourists, and in the winter it is
the endpoint for the Iditarod sled dog race, which starts in Anchorage.
Follow the link above for much more!
is the northernmost city in Alaska, 340 miles north of the
Arctic Circle, on the Arctic Ocean. This
map shows Barrow, but it is deceptive. The dashed line shows the air route to Barrow -
there is no road, although the Dalton Highway
close. Airlines provide the main mode of transportation to
Barrow with daily flights from Anchorage and Fairbanks. Follow the link
"Barrow" for more.
Click here for a listing of links to Native Corporations.