Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Section 14(h)(1): Historical Places and Cemetery Sites
Yup'ik Elder Oral History of the Traditional Site, Pugcenar, Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Southwest Alaska

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In the 1970s and 1980s, Alaska Native elders were interviewed to locate sites of enduring significance to their communities, as selected by each Regional Corporation under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA).

This project focuses on the villages of Akiachak, Akiak and Tuluksak, where Yup’ik elders identified more than 500 place names within an area of approximately 5,000 square miles between the Yukon and Kuskokwim rivers.

One site, Pugcenar, was chosen to demonstrate the cultural richness documented in oral history materials archived by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA)-ANCSA Program. The program's archives of oral history recordings, photos, maps, and site investigations are located in Anchorage at the BIA office and in Fairbanks at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Rasmuson Library.

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montage of maps and black and white photo

All maps, photos, and transcripts in this project, unless otherwise noted, are from BIA-ANCSA materials in Anchorage and Fairbanks. Hand-drawn map (above) by Joshua Phillip, 1988; photo of Pugcenar on Elaayiq River by Matt O'Leary, 1988, BIA ANCSA.

This project is funded by the National Science Foundation, and was completed by Louann Rank and the University of Alaska Fairbanks Oral History Program, with assistance from Dr. Bob Jansen, Turtlelane Studios, Erskineville, Australia, and Ken Pratt, Matt O’Leary, and Robert Drozda, BIA ANCSA.