Major Oral History Publication Made Available from Unalakleet, Alaska, USA

Snowchange makes available a major oral history document from Alaska:

It Has Been in Our Blood for Years and Years that We Are Salmon Fishermen – A Book of Oral History from Unalakleet, Alaska, USA documents observations, and knowledge presented in 2002 by seventeen Unalakleet indigenous people, with some further input in 2008. It tells a story of a changing community on the Norton Sound near the Bering Sea.

Climate change, subsistence rights, and loss of culture and tradition intermingle with the powerful stories of village elders regarding Beluga hunts and the long human history of the area. The Unalakleet Tribal Council partnered with the Snowchange Cooperative to collect the voices of local experts and holders of knowledge in 2002.

Unalakleet oral histories add a rich component to the culture of Western Alaska. This book is also an important source for studies of climate and ecological change in the region. It can be used in schools, universities, and colleges as an oral history source book of Unalakleet.

Cover of the book is available here.

PDF of the book is available here.


Kaisu Mustonen specializes in the knowledge of women in the subsistence communities of the Arctic. She holds a Master’s degree in Social Sciences (Human Geography) from University of Joensuu, Finland.

Tero Mustonen has been working with northern Indigenous and subsistence communities for fifteen years. He is the Head of the Village of Selkie, North Karelia, Finland and holds a Doctorate in Human Geography.

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