Photos from Lindberg and Lydia Bergman's personal collection
Lindberg Bergman is an Koyukon Athabascan elder from Allakaket, Alaska. He was born in 1929 and grew up living off the land and learning traditional skills. He is especially known for his boat building. He married his wife, Lydia in 1947, and they had eleven children. Like most Koyukuk River men of his generation, Lindberg worked away from home many summers when his kids were growing up. He worked at the Utopia mine, was an oiler on the dredge at Hog River, was a firefighter for the Bureau of Land Management, and was a maintenance man for the airport runway. Even as he is aging, Lindberg still hunts, fishes, cuts wood, and enjoys traveling by snowmachine and boat.
Lydia Bergman is a Koyukon Athabascan elder from Allakaket, Alaska. She was born in 1931 to Agnes Linus and Little William. She grew up living a traditional subsistence lifestyle which meant she was not able to attend much school since her family frequently moved from one seasonal camp to the other. She married Lindberg Bergman in 1947 and together they had eleven children. By the 1970s, Lydia began to work, doing jobs such as childcare, sewing, cooking, and being a janitor. In her younger days, Lydia was an active dog musher, one of the few women in the sport on the Koyukuk River, and won the Allakaket Spring Carnival races three years in a row. She also is very involved with the Episcopal Church, where she is a lay reader.