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A stormy sea lashes the village of Shismaref, Alaska, where the coastline has eroded 30–90 m (100–300 ft) in the past 30 years.
Travel to the ends of the earth—literally—and discover the polar ocean basins. Both the Arctic Ocean and the Southern Ocean are defined by ice and dramatic shifts between endless day and endless...
In the episode of One Species at a Time , writer Karen Romano Young takes an icebreaker to Barrow, Alaska, to join in the festival of Naluqatak and learn about the intimate relationship between the...
Master carver Douglas Chilton rides at the prow of his creation—the Raven Spirit canoe—at its ceremonial launch in Washington, D.C. The canoe is now on display in the Smithsonian’s Sant Ocean Hall...
Sometimes the “Watcher,” a raven with an irregular wing, monitored carver Douglas Chilton’s progress on the canoe from an overhead perch. More about raven spirit can be found in our Raven Spirit...
To people living in warm climates, all ice looks the same. But if you live day-in and day-out on sea ice, like the Inupiaq people of Alaska, you would find that there are many kinds of ice, all...
Classic examples of Northwest Coast art, these rattles from British Columbia illustrate the sophisticated way of life salmon helped provide. They were used during shamanistic performances to cure...
For over a decade, Smithsonian Arctic Archaeologists have been investigating an early European whaling site at Hare Harbor in Quebec, Canada . The site and the artifacts that have been recovered has...
Explore the different cultures of the territory between the Arctic and Pacific oceans. The area is home to over 150,000 Indigenous residents, whose diverse languages and cultures are both a link to...
Fish spears and fish weirs—fish traps placed in rivers—are traditional ways of catching salmon on rivers. More about raven spirit can be found in our Raven Spirit featured story.
With the sun in its beak, a raven figurehead points the way for the Raven Spirit canoe, now on display at the Smithsonian Institution. More about raven spirit can be found in our Raven Spirit...
Research at Hare Harbor in Quebec, Canada has revealed important clues about the connections between the Inuit peoples of Northern Canada and the Basque whalers of Spain and France. Excavations at...
Using traditional tools, master carver Douglas Chilton of the Tlingit Nation chisels a red cedar log from the Alaska forest, gradually shaping it into a canoe. More about raven spirit can be found in...
A 2011 excavation led by the Arctic Studies Center uncovered this fragment of decorated European stoneware called a bellarmine jug. Uncovering this fragment, that was likely manufactured in the 15th...
Members of the Tlingit Nation celebrate the September 2008 opening of the Smithsonian’s Sant Ocean Hall. More about raven spirit can be found in our Raven Spirit featured story.
About 2,500 years ago cold climate brought the first Inuit peoples into the Gulf of St. Lawrence, off the coast of Eastern Canada. Early Eskimo groups, known as Groswater Dorset, occupied many sites...
Jacqueline (Johnson) Peta, executive director of the National Congress of American Indians and member of Sealaska Corporation’s board of directors, sprinkles goose down on a traditional blanket at a...
Members of the Squamish Nation paddle their canoe to a 1997 festival celebrating traditional Native canoe arts. Native peoples of the Northwest Coast believe each canoe has its own spirit. Designs on...
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