Eskimo Gravesite

Eskimo GraveAn Eskimo grace in Nome, Alaska around 1890. Note the combination of traditional and modern European influenced practices. The grave consists of a hut or shelter built over a wooden coffin. The hut is made of improvised materials including planks and driftwood. Mounted on the grave is a Christian cross as well as poles holding two rifles. We can tell from this that the deceased was a Christian convert and likely an important wealthy man. Guns were expensive luxury goods for the Eskimo and essential to their survival. The fact that this man owned two rifles and that his family could afford to bury him with his guns, instead of passing them on to his children, suggests that his family was wealthy enough to spare the guns.

1 2 3 44