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Tlinglit of Kake

Listed under Traditional Cultures in Alaska, United States.

  • Photo of Tlinglit of Kake
  • Photo of Tlinglit of Kake
Photo of Tlinglit of Kake
Photo by flickr user Unhindered by Talent
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A once feared Tlinglit group lives on Kupreanof Island in a community of around 700 called Kake (like cake). This territorial community controlled a large portion of the trade in fish and timber by beating other groups from the most secure trade routes, which is how they got their reputation. They were also involved in altercations with Europeans which did nothing for their reputation. This animosity came to a head in 1869 after a spate of murders for retribution when the US Navy shelled Kake, destroying their homes and food supplies. After regrouping, Kake and it’s people were the first Alaskan group to get US citizenship.

In recent times the Kake tribe are better known for the 130 foot totem pole they commissioned for Alaska’s centenary in 1967 which overlooks the town from a nearby ridge. The main industry is still fishing. The Tlinglit culture is now critically endangered with only around one hundred people native speakers so Kake is key to the preservation of the language and culture.

Expect to find a remote community set in breathtaking, typically Alaskan scenery of rocky mountains encroaching onto the coastline.

Written by  World Reviewer Staff.

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