S: Inuit Peoples
BC: We hope you enjoyed our book and learned some more on the Arctic Natives! | By Hilli Goldhar, Zach Brown, Rebecca Sharer and Talia Widrich
FC: Arctic Natives | By: Hilli, Rebecca, Talia, and Zach
1: Our names are Rebecca, Hilli, Talia, and Zach. We wrote this book to teach children more about the Arctic Natives. We liked how we got the opportunity to work in a group and put each of our individual research together to form our book. We hope you enjoy it!
2: Table of Contents 1.Geographical Location 2.Beliefs of Origins/Legends 3.Main Tribes in Area 4.Social Structure 5.Arrival of the Europeans 6.Ways of Communication 7.Shelter 8.Food Sources and Examples 9.Food Dishes 10.Special Events 11.Clothing 12.Famous People 13.Weapons and Tools 14.Beliefs 15.Methods of Transportation 16.Today's Natives
4: Geographical Location The Arctic Natives lived in many places with different climates. The Inuit people lived across the top of North America, from Alaska to Greenland, for more than four thousand years. The Arctic is very pretty. For nine months a year, the Arctic is covered in snow and it is winter. The winter is very cold and long. All of the lakes and water turn to ice and there is daylight the whole winter. Where the ground is higher, there are often rocks which are pushed upwards by the freezing of the earth. In the winter, all the soil is frozen below the earth. In the far north of the Arctic, which is surrounded by large icebergs, are mountainous islands split with snowfields or glaciers. When the snow starts to melt, water cannot drain into the earth because of frost. Mazes of streams are created. The summer, on on the other hand, is short, but cool. In the summer, there is no darkness at all. The summer in the Arctic is very pretty. All of the animals come out from hibernation and the landscape turns from white and icy to brown and grey. In the Arctic, plants take years and years to grow. There are many flowers growing there. There are 2,000 kinds of lichens, 500 differing mosses and 900 different rooted flowering plants. In the summer, there are many species of birds flying around.The seas and the rivers are filled with salmon. Although it is summer, in the north of the Arctic they get almost no rain, sometimes even less then the Sahara desert.
5: The Arctic Natives had to adapt to of all the changes from the winter to the summer, but they only took things from the land that they needed to survive in the differing climates.
6: This is what the land looked like | This is what the land looked like
7: Beliefs of Origins/Legends There was not much belief for the Inuits in how the world was created. The whole idea about how the earth was created was very complicated for the Inuits. That's why they didn't think about it a lot. They believed that the waters were supported by the earth, which was supported by pillars. They also believed that the earth was covering the underworld. The entrances to the underworld were found in the sea. The Inuits did not believe in an after life. They believed that everybody had two souls. One of the souls was the personal soul and the other was an ancestor's soul. They also believed that when the person dies, one soul goes to a place they hoped would be filled with happiness and warmth, and the other soul would go to a new born baby. Nobody knows how the Inuit's thought about the whole idea, but I think that everyone wonders about the beginning of the world.
9: Inuit Tribes in Northern Canada
10: Social Structures The Arctic Natives had a different government than we have today. The government decided that everybody should share. Men would build, hunt and fish for food for their family. The woman would cook the food that their husbands hunted, dress the animal skin, make clothing, and watch the children. I think that the people in the Arctic Natives had a very good way of doing things and making it organized. | The men hunted while the women did other chores.
11: Arrival of the Europeans Inuit traditions began to change when the Europeans came. English, Scottish and Americans seriously affected the ancient ways. Anglican and Roman Catholic missionaries brought Christianity to the north in the 1850’s, introduced a way of writing and established schools, hospitals and nursing stations. Explorers, whalers, traders, missionaries and government brought new ideas like tools, weapons, religion, education and laws which changed the Inuits' lives. Inuits met European explorers and they traded things like knives and iron pots. Whalers traded food to them for fox pelts. Trading posts were built all over the Arctic by the people of the Hudson Bay Company. Inuits had easy access to goods like guns to hunt. The Inuits also started eating foods of the Europeans. Inuits worked for their own families. Now they worked for whalers on land trapping animals for everyday uses, on ships and processing stations. Some people found jobs, but many people could not get back their own way of living. World War Two brought modern technology to the Arctic, and permanently changed the Inuits' way of life.
12: Many Inuits found jobs at air bases and weather stations for the defense of North America. Seeing the impact of the Europeans inspired James Houston, an artist and friend to the Inuits, in 1949 to think about ways to make a living using their traditional skills. He helped them sell their carvings in southern Canada, and later encouraged them to do other art. The West Baffin Eskimo group, out of a lot of other groups, worked together to create a new industry. After, copperplate engravings, printed fabrics and ceramics were added to their collection. Several artists became well known and some like Kenojuak and Pitseolak were honoured by the Government of Canada. | In many parts of the world, Inuit works of art are now expensive in shops and galleries. The Inuits had no resistance to the Europeans diseases so thousands died. In two generations with the Europeans, 90% of the Mackenzie River Delta died. Europeans changed the Inuits' way of life forever.
13: The arrival of the Europeans had many consequences for the Inuit.
14: Ways of Communication The Arctic Natives had many languages. The Arctic Natives had two branches, one was called Eastern Branch and the other was called Western Branch. In the Eastern Branch they spoke Inuktitut in Canada, Inupiaq in Alaska, and Kalaallisut in Greenland. All of these languages were considered the same language, but spoken in three different countries. In the Western Branch, they spoke Central Alaskan Yupik, Pacific Gulf Yupik in Alaska, and Siberian Yupik in Canada and Alaska. Each of these languages has several dialects as well. These languages were hard to learn and hard to speak because they were complex languages. As you can see, the Arctic Natives spoke many languages that are not widely heard of today.
15: Shelter The Inuit lived in a variety of shelters. Each shelter was used for different climates or for the length of time they needed a shelter. In the winter, the Inuit built low rock houses with floors that sunk into the ground. These houses were roofed with large chunks of rock, and with turf piled around the shelter to keep in the heat. The English word, igloo, comes from the word “igdlu”, which was the Inuit word for any sort of house. Igloos were used as temporary shelters while the Inuit were traveling. Igloos were built with wind-hardened ice. These shelters are known to be circular, with snow blocks made to form a rising spiral, just like a dome. Igloos were a very convenient form of shelter because they could be built quickly and used during the harshest of Arctic storms.During the summer, the Inuit built tents out of driftwood or poles that were coated with animal skins, mostly caribou or sealskin. Boulders were placed around the tent to keep it from blowing away in the wind. These tents were easy to build, and very convenient under Arctic conditions. In all, the shelters that the Inuit built allowed them to survive the very harsh winters.
16: Food Sources and Examples The Arctic Natives were mainly hunters, but fishing was also an important source of food. The Arctic Natives counted on animals for survival. There was very little vegetation so they did not really eat plants for food. The Arctic Natives were very good hunters. All year round they would hunt for animals, but each season they would hunt for different animals. Some of the land animals that were hunted were the caribou, the musk, oxen, arctic fox, polar bear, arctic hare and arctic birds. In the winter, they hunted for sea mammals. Seals, walruses, whales, beluga whales and narwhals are other animals they hunted. In the winter, they also hunted for fish from holes in the ice. In the winter, hunting and fishing was hard because of the thick layer of ice and snow that covered the Arctic floor. In the fall and summer, caribou would gather in herds to go south for the winter to get better food and that made them easier to kill. In the summer, the Arctic Natives would also fish to get food. They did that in boats called kayaks. They mostly fished for Arctic char and sometimes they fished for white fish and trout. Some animals were hunted in the open water. Over all , the Inuit depended on hunting and fishing for survival.
17: This is an Arctic Native hunting. | This is an Arctic Native hunting seals from a whole in the ice.
18: Food Dishes The Arctic Natives had very basic food diets. Meat and blubber from animals were basic foods in the Inuit diet. The Inuit rarely cooked it, and when they did it was taken to the igloo and cooked over a lamp fire. When they hunted the animal they would eat them raw because it tasted good. The raw skin of a white whale and narwhal had vitamin A, C, and D, it also prevented illness. Fish also provided a variety in the Inuit diet. As you can see, the Inuit had a really basic diet, but were still able to keep it nutritious.
19: The Inuits help many special events in the Arctic. The Inuit would hold a ceremony called a “Bladder dance”, after a large hunt. This ceremony was named the “Bladder dance” for the reason that the Inuit believed that the soul of the killed animal was inside the bladder. The ceremony involved returning the animal’s bladder to the sea, so that, according to their beliefs, the soul could find a new body. The Inuit also held “Drum Dances”. The main instrument used in this Inuit ceremony was a one sided drum. This drum was usually made with caribou skin, and walrus and seal skin. The purpose for these dances were for marriages, births, an Inuit boy’s first hunt, changing of seasons, greeting new visitors, or to honour someone who had passed away. Throat singing or “katajaqing”, was a form of entertainment for the women when the men were away hunting. Two women would perform a duet and compete to see who could outlast the other. One woman would set a pattern, and the other would create her own, in harmony, making it sound like one unified melody.They would make rhythmic sounds in their throats and chests. Overall, special events and ceremonies were important to the Arctic culture. | Special Events/ Ceremonies
20: Clothing For the Inuits, clothing was just as important as survival. They used skins and furs from bears, caribous, foxes, hares, wolves, seals and birds to make clothing. Caribou skin was used most because it was warm and light. Caribou skin weighed about 5 kilograms. There were some disadvantages about caribou skin. The hairs were hollow and broke easily. Clothing was more or less the same. Most of the womens' jobs were to make the clothing. The clothes were sewn together with needles made of bone or ivory. The Inuits did not run because sweat would get trapped in the fur of their clothing. Sweat was very dangerous because if someone sweats then they may freeze to death. I think that the Inuits were right to think that clothing was just as important as survival because it was freezing in the Arctic and without clothing they would freeze to death.
21: The Inuit were excellent hunters and the hunting tools they made also served the purpose as weapons used against their enemies or other Inuit groups. Mostly, Inuits used harpoons, bows and arrows, and spears. Harpoons were generally used for hunting larger prey such as whales, seals and walruses. Spears were used for hunting caribou or polar bears. The Bola was another weapon made from sinew and bone which was used to capture and entangle larger animals. Most Inuit weapons were made of bone, antlers, teeth, horns, or ivory. When fishing, the Inuit attached sealskin (floats) to harpoon heads which kept the animals near the surface of the water after being killed. These harpoon heads were usually made of walrus tusks. Since it was very hard to catch small fish using harpoons, the Inuit also used nets and fishing lines for this task. In conclusion, Weapons and tools were very important in order for the Inuit to survive. | Weapons and Tools
22: There are many Inuits who became famous for different things. Zacharias Kunuk was born in 1957. He was born on Baffin Island in Canada. Zacharias was a movie producer and director. Nancy Karetak-Lindell was born in 1957 in Northwest Territories. She was a member of parliament of Canada. Paul Okalik was born in pangnirtung in 1964. He was the prime minister of Nunavut. Leona Aglukkaq was born in 1967 in Inuvik, Northwest Territories. She was Canada’s minister of health. Jordin John Kudluk Tootoo was born in 1983 in Nunavut. He was the first Inuit NHL hockey player. Jordin was on the Nashville Predators. Susan Aglukark was born in Churchill, Manitoba in 1967. She was a singer and a song writer. As you can see, there are many Inuits who did amazing things in their lives which made them famous. | Famous Inuits
23: Zacharias Kunuk | Nancy Karetak-Lindell | Paul Okalik | Leona Aglukkaq | Jordin John Kudluk Tootoo | Susan Aglukark
24: The Arctic Natives believed in a lot of things that we might not believe in. The Arctic Natives believed in the power of source. They believed that spirits were good and bad. There were many spirits, one being a women who lived at the bottom of the seas where the sins of man were. They were said to settle in hair like dirt. If the women got mad, there would be poor hunting because she kept the animals in the sea away from the land. The Inuits also believed everything had a soul. When an animal died the spirit of the soul would pass to another living creature. Festivals were held to honour the animals that they killed. Special traditions were held to make sure that when men hunted in the future, it would bring a lot of game. Other beliefs were held by Native taboos which are people who lived on their own. They said that that the land and sea mammals could not be eaten together. | Beliefs
25: For example, you could not eat chicken with fish. They could not be touched by the same thing either. So, if a dear was killed and then a sea mammal was ready to be hunted, the weapon had to be smoked over a fire of seaweed before being used. The Inuit believed in wearing different amulets for different religious reasons. They would wear owl claws to have strong hands. They would wear caribou ears to represent quick hearing and a willow branch for growth. In addition to amulets, the Inuits had shamans. Shamans were people who could talk to spirits. They could ask important questions and they would get answers. Shamans had the power to fight evil spirits and to find the guilty person when something went wrong. When someone died, they wrapped up the body with skin and laid them on the hills with a ring of stones. Then they would place weapons and tools beside the body. The power of death was believed to be rather strong and most feared. When a child was born they were usually named by a dead relative thinking that the soul of that dead person would carry on to the child.
26: Over all, the Inuits had many beliefs that made them unique.
27: The Inuit had a lot of different ways of transportation. When it was the winter time, the Inuit traveled by foot or were pulled by dog sleds. In the summer and spring, the Inuit took advantages of the large space of land and traveled by boat. There were two types of boats. One of them was called a kayak and the other was called an umiak. Kayaks were a one person boat and not meant for a lot of hunting. Umiaks were used to hunt larger animals and to carry them to the igloo. As you can see, the Arctic Natives had very unique ways of transportation. | Methods of Transportation | This is a umiak
28: Inuits today live very different from how they lived a long time ago. There are many changes. Most of the Inuits live in wooden houses with a bathroom and all the other things they did not have in the past. They used snow mobiles and Skidoos instead of their dog sleds. Now their boats have motors. The Inuit usually have doctor stations and schools. Schools have also changed. The schools teach the Inuit language and traditional values and skills of the Inuit. They encourage knowledge of ancient traditions. Most Inuit still hunt to get their food. The Inuit developed businesses. The first one was in 1951. They sold crafts produced by them. They made carvings of animals and figures. They sold them to Canada and U.S and Europe. That is the most important way to make money. They also sell paintings, prints, calendars and embroidered clothing. The Inuit became more depended on Canadian goods. The Inuit did not move from place to place as much. In the 1970s the Inuits formed a group to protect their rights. In 1982 a meeting was held to decide on dividing the North West territories into two. | Todays Natives
29: One part would be called Nunavut which is the Inuit word for “our land” . Nunavut would be governed by the Inuit people. In 1993 Nunavut became a separate province. Inuits have fought to protect their right to hunt and fish. The Inuit are determined to control their health, education and social services. Health problems are a great concern to people. The Inuit suffer from several serious illnesses like measles, influenza, tuberculosis, pneumonia and bronchitis. Many Native people abuse alcohol and drugs. Overall, the Inuit have very different lives than they had a long time ago, but still try to keep their traditions.
30: Bibliography Bonvillain, Nancy. Indians of North America. The Inuit. USA: Chelsea House, 1995. Print. Burgan ,Michael. Inuit. United States of America: Gareth Stevens Publishing, 2005. Findlay, Heather. Canada’s First People.1997.Goldi Productions. 8 Feb. 2012. http://firstpeoplesofcanada.com/fp_groups/fp_inuit2.html. Fordham, Derek. Eskimos. London, England: Macdonald and Co.1979. Greg Smith, J.H. Eskimos the Inuit of the arctic. England: n.p., 1984. Print. Inuit Drum Dancing of the Arctic. 2011. Free Spirit Gallery. 4 Mar. 2012. http://www.freespiritgallery.ca/inuitdrumdancing.htm Maclean, Hope. Indians, Inuit and Metis of Canada. Ontario, Canada: Gage Publishing Limited, 1982. Smith Siska, Heather. The Haida and the Inuit. Vancouver, British Columbia: Douglas and McIntryre, "The Inuit - food/hunting." Canada's first peoples. Canadian Heritage , 2007. Web. 4 Mar. 2012.
31: 2. Mediatech. Wiki.Answers.com. 4 Mar 2012.http://wikianswers.com/Q/ Who_is_a_famous_Inuit#>"Moder Inuit schools." Google images. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Mar. 2012. 32: search?tbm=isch&hl=en&source=hp&biw=1680&bih=897&q=inuit+culture&gbv=2&oq=inuit+&aq=5&aqi=g10&aql=&gs "Native people:Arctic." The Canadian Encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Mar. 2012.
32: search?tbm=isch&hl=en&source=hp&biw=1680&bih=897&q=inuit+culture&gbv=2&oq=inuit+&aq=5&aqi=g10&aql=&gs "Native people:Arctic." The Canadian Encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Mar. 2012.