Exhibit, To The Totem Forests


'Yalis (Alert Bay)

Gwa'yasdams (Gilford Village)

Kalugwis (Turnour Island)

K'we (Mt. Stephens)

'Mi'mkwamlis (Village Island)

T'sadzis'nukwaame' (New Vancouver)

Ts'aa7ahl (Chaatl)

Q'una (Skedans)

Hlragilda (Skidegate)


Pebble Town

Gitwangak (Kitwanga)



Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

Ba'a's (Blunden Harbour)

Xwatis (Quatsino)

Q'una (Skedans)

Hlragilda (Skidegate)

Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

Caynaa (Haina)

Hiellen (Tow Hill)




RBCM PN10392 'Kispiox Village' / Emily Carr / Vancouver Art Gallery / 42.3.104

"The pole, Grizzly-of-the-Sun, comprises two Owls, one at the top and the other at the bottom, the Grizzly-bear, with the Sun around his neck; and five small human figures which were termed 'People-around' between the Bear and the lower Owl.

"A maiden in seclusion saw coming down Salmon-creek the Bear with a 'sun collar' around its neck, which her parents killed and gave her for her posterity to use as an emblem.

"The Grizzly-bear of the Sun pole is the work of Tsugyet (of the household of Amagyet, Kispayaks), James Green, now an old man, belonging to the Wolf phratry."
Barbeau 1929

RBCM PN11979 'Totem Pole of Nekt, Kispiox' / A.Y. Jackson / National Gallery of Canada / 17535

Some years before anthropologist Marius Barbeau (1929:38-40) elicited the history of the Nekt pole, Emily Carr astutely noted:

"I saw this same story depicted upon two different poles, each being carried out in entirely different design. One stands in the village of Kispiox and one in Gitwangak, both up Skeena River district."

She then recounted the lengthy and detailed saga of a young Gitxsan noblewoman captured in a raid by Haidas, made a slave wife to a great chief, bearing him three sons-the first two of which the father killed. On the birth of her third son "she determined that he should not share fate of his brothers, so, waiting 'til her lord chief slept, she came stealthily and cut his head off-taking the head, she placed it up in her canoe and taking her babe she fled across that rough body of water . . . up the treacherous 'Skeena', back to the home of her father. The Haidas saw her pass, but as the husbands head was visible in the canoe they supposed him to be with her and did not give chase."
Emily Carr Lecture on Totems, 1913:12-13. Barbeau 1929:38-40

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