Day 13: Ketchikan, Alaska - the salmon capital of the world!


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August 15th 2016
Published: December 16th 2016
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The Salmon Capital of the world
Monday, August 15th, 2016

Day 13: Ketchikan, Alaska - the salmon capital of the world!



Ketchikan, is our last official stop in Alaska. It rains frequently in Ketchikan and today was no exception. Renata and I decided to spend the day at the nearby Saxman village.



Ketchikan has the world’s largest collection of standing totem poles and many of them are found at Saxman Village. Some of the interesting facts we learned about totem poles is that inanimate objects are forbidden on totem poles and all of the figures must represent living beings. There are many different types of totem poles. There are clan crests, mortuary poles, story poles, memorial poles and house posts. There are even shame or ridicule poles.



Some of the interesting totem poles that we saw were the Lincoln pole and Seward Pole.

The Lincoln Pole is an example of a commemorative pole. The pole marks the signing of a peace pact between two rival Tlingit Tribes. The figure of Abraham Lincoln is at the top of the pole to represent the ship, “the U.S Revenue Cutter Lincoln” which was instrumental in peace talks. The figure of Lincoln is used rather than the ship because inanimate are not allowed.



Another interesting pole is the Seward Pole, a shame pole. It makes fun of William H. Seward, Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln. In the summer of 1869, Seward was treated like royalty and given many gifts by the Tlingit people. In Tlingit Culture, he was expected to return the honor by giving gifts to the Tlingit people. He did not do so, so the Tlingit people created a pole with Seward’s nostrils and ears painted red, signifying greediness.



After meeting Master Carver, Nathan Jackson and learning how to dance with the Cape Fox dancers in the Beaver Clan house, it was time to say goodbye to Saxman village.



Our last stop in Ketchikan was Creek Street for some last minute souvenir shopping before heading back to the ship.





Tomorrow we head along the inside passage on our way back towards Vancouver.


Additional photos below
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Saxman VillageSaxman Village
Saxman Village

The Totem Pole Collection
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Saxman Village

Lincoln Pole
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Saxman Village

Eagle totem pole
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Saxman Village

Meeting Master Carver Nathan Jackson
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Saxman Villiage

At the Beaver Clan House
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Ketchikan

Creek Street
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Ketchikan

Creek Street


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