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Athapaskan-Eskimo Relations in West-Central Alaska: An Ethnohistorical Perspective

James W. VanStone
Arctic Anthropology
Vol. 16, No. 2, Indian-Eskimo Relations: Studies in the Inter-Ethnic Relations of Small Societies (1979), pp. 152-159
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40315959
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Athapaskan-Eskimo Relations in West-Central Alaska: An Ethnohistorical Perspective
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Abstract

When the Russian-American Company established Mikhailovskiy Redoubt (St. Michael) north of the Yukon delta in 1833, Eskimos living in the immediate vicinity of the post were already using tobacco and a variety of metal implements including pots of various sizes, knives, lances, and steel flints. Upon investigation it was learned that some of these trade items had managed to make their way north from Aleksandrovskiy Redoubt at the mouth of the Nushagak River in the relatively short span of 14 years. Most of them, however, came from Russian posts on the Kolyma River in Siberia by way of the Chukchi. Further investigation revealed that the middlemen for this elaborate trade between northeast Asia and northwestern North America were the Eskimo inhabitants of Sledge and King islands, both strategically located in the north Bering Sea not far off the coast of Seward Peninsula (Fig. 1).

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