November 14th-20th Is "Rock Your Mocs" Week In Native Heritage Month

These Boots Are Made For Living  Beaded high-topped moose hide boots in Fairbanks. (Photo by Country Journal, January 2014)  Pink-Flowered W...


These Boots Are Made For Living 

Beaded high-topped moose hide boots in Fairbanks. (Photo by Country Journal, January 2014) 

Pink-Flowered Winter Boots, Made By Athabascan Beadworker Ellen Thomas, Brightened A Cold Winter Day 

Alaska beadworker Ellen Thomas of the village of Tanacross near Tok made these fanciful moosehide winter boots around 20 years ago. They are carefully constructed, showing that the skilled art of smoking moosehide, and combining it with trade items – like flannel, beads, and felt, and topping it off with local beaver fur, was very much alive in 1992 – and has continued to the present day. These pink traditional Athabascan boots can be seen at the Morris Thompson Cultural Center in Fairbanks.



 

Mocassins on display at Posty's Trading Post. (Photo, Copper River Country Journal in 2013)  

Ahtna & Tanana Women Make Handcrafted Moosehide Slippers 

In rural Alaska, local women busy themselves making useful and decorative articles of clothing. It grows out of a long tradition, when the only type of clothes that people wore came from the surrounding wilds. 

These moosehide slippers were made by four Ahtna-Tanana women, all living near the border of the two regions of Alaska, where the Copper River and its headwaters meet the Alaska Range. 

They were made by Jenny Sanford of Mentasta, Vivian Tyone of Gulkana, Maggie Northway Roach of Tok, and Ruby Sinyon of Chistochina. They were in the display case at Posty's Trading Post in Chistochina. 

This is a story by the Copper River Country Journal celebrating Native Heritage Month, 2021. It's for everyone in the Copper Valley, but especially for the many members of the Sanford, Tyone, Sinyon, Charley and other families who live here today. 


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