The Cottage Community

The Cottage Community

(excerpts from Ellen Hope Hays interview)


Click on a section below to hear audio.

1) Background information on the Cottage Community.

Indian River/ land -- Kiks.ádi/ Kaagwaantaan/ land -- value/ Russian American Company/ Sitka/ battle -- story/ battle -- ancestors/ Presbyterian Mission/ Sheldon Jackson campus/ Indian River -- resource use/ Christianity|

3) Identifying people in a photograph of Cottage Community residents.

Merrill, E.W./ Cottages -- Metlakatla Street/ clan -- resistance/ Sloan family/ Willard, Jenny/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother (mother's aunt)/ Sitka Training School/ Willard, John/ Haines/ Willard, Jenny -- mother/ Sloan Simpson, Mary/ Simpson, Peter/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Canada/ Father Duncan/ Metlakatla/ Simpson, Louis/ Simpson, Jenny/ Simpson, Jenny -- mother (Sloan)/ Cameron, Amelia Sloan/ Cameron, Don/ translator/ Bailey, Olinda/ naming -- Mission/ naming --Tlingit/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- mother/ Hope, Tillie Howard/ Howard, David|

4) Continues identifying people in a photograph of Cottage Community residents.

photograph -- dating/ Hope, Andrew/ James, Ray -- wife/ Cameron, Amelia Sloan -- son/ James, Ray -- brother Albert/ Truitt, Gil -- grandfather/ James, Ray -- sister Olinda/ Kadashan, Elizabeth/ Wrangell/ Juneau/ James, Elizabeth -- daughter/ Brady, Carol James Feller/ battle -- ancestors/ Jackson, Sheldon/ Cottages -- first inhabitants/ Kelly Street/ Sitka Training School/ houses -- different/ Chichagof Mine/ Young, Ralph/ Newell, John/ gold -- discovery/ Chichagof Island|

5) Talks about the Cottage Community while looking at a map drawn of it.

Cottages/ Kelly Street -- differences/ Metlakatla Street/ Young, Ralph/ Newell, John/ Chichagof Island -- gold/ Chichagof Island -- community/ Anderson, Esther/ Anderson, Hazel/ Anderson, George/ residence -- location of/ grandmother -- lived with/ Simpson, Peter/ grandmother -- Sloan sister|

6) Discussion about the Cottage Community and map continued.

Cottages/ residences -- location of/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ Simpsons/ Sloan, Mary/ Sloan, Mary -- mother/ Sloan family/ family -- history/ Wells family/ Sloan (Cameron), Amelia/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ Howard, Lottie Sloan/ Simpson, Louis/ Simpson, Esther/ Gordon, Alfred/ Tsimshian/ Metlakatla/ Hopson, George/ Peck Sr., Cyrus -- mother/ Hobson, Louisa/ marriage/ Russian/ tradition -- continuation of/ community -- Christian/ community -- unique|

7) Differences between life in the Cottage Community and the Native village in Sitka.

Cottages/ community -- model/ house -- style/ furniture -- different/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ lifestyle -- ahead of time/ lifestyle -- village/ church -- Russian Orthodox/ Tlingit/ church -- ceremonial/ church -- Presbyterian/ church -- differences|

8) Cottage Hall and its role in the community.

Cottages/ Cottage Hall/ Metlakatla Street/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- sister/ Cottage Hall -- foundation/ Alaska Native Brotherhood -- beginning/ Cottage Hall -- change/ band/ dance -- modern/ church -- influence/ freedom/ Cottage Hall -- uses|

9) Discussing photographs of Cottage Hall.

Cottages/ Cottage Hall -- importance of/ community/ Sitka Historical Society/ building -- material/ Cottages -- band|

10) Identifying people in a photograph of the Presbyterian Church Community.

Presbyterian community/ Community Center/ children/ Walton, Rudolph/ Peck Sr., Cyrus/ social gathering/ Sheldon Jackson School/ Young, Ralph/ Price, Frank/ James, Ray/ Kitka, Herman/ Walton, Rudolph/ staff/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ pictures -- people/ curtains/ Mr. Truitt/ Simpson, Louis/ Willard, Jenny/ Walton, Mrs. Rudolph/ Cameron, Amelia/ "Cottage Clan"|

11) Discussing a photograph of people holding band instruments and the role of music in the community.

music -- band/ Tlingit/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- mother/ clothing/ Merrill, E.W./ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ Cameron, Amelia/ Mrs. Cook/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- mother's step-mother/ Truitt, Gil -- grandfather/ Mrs. Simpson/ Howard, George/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandfather/ Simpson, Peter/ Willard, John -- band leader/ Willard, Jenny/ music -- introduction to/ church -- Russian Orthodox/ church -- Greek Orthodox/ liturgy -- musical/ choir/ church -- Presbyterian/ instruments/ choruses -- band oriented/ Metlakatla|

14) Cottage residents' relationship to the Park.

Cottages/ Park -- use of/ Sloan family/ invasion -- Russian-American Company/ battle/ battle -- survival march/ Baranof Island/ place -- connection to/ Park -- lack of meaning/ land -- ownership/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ Willard, Jenny/ battle -- feelings about/ beach flats -- importance of/ resources -- use of/ history -- knowledge of/ gathering -- memorial|

15) Cottage residents' relationship to the Park continued.

Park -- use of/ battle -- memorial/ history/ songs/ memorial -- interruption/ event -- Tlingit/ Merrill, E.W./ Russian-American Company/ Park -- land use/ Visitor Center/ Kiks.ádi/ Sloan family/ Kaagwaantaan/ respect/ Visitor Center -- dedication/ National Park Service -- resentment toward/ Kiks.ádi -- elders/ National Park Service -- lack of cultural awareness/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- father/ culture -- lack of knowledge|

16) Changing relations between the Park Service and the Native people.

National Park Service/ Visitor Center/ National Park Service -- relationship with the community/ employment -- Park/ Sloan family/ Kiks.ádi/ Park -- use of/ relationship -- improvement/ Cultural Center/ employment -- Kiks.ádi/ historians/ Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall|

19) The destruction of the blockhouse in the Park, and the connection between the Cottage Community and the birth of the Alaska Native Brotherhood.

blockhouse -- dismantling/ Hall, George/ blockhouse -- fire/ blockhouse -- ownership/ National Park/ offense/ Cottages/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Cottages -- significance of/ Cottages -- residents/ authority -- trust in/ church/ missionaries/ respect/ naming|

22) The importance of the Cottages and the Alaska Native Brotherhood (ANB) while looking at a group photograph of ANB members.

Mission -- newspaper/ "Verstovian"/ Merrill, E.W./ Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall/ Cottages/ Hall -- building/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- father/ culture -- Alaska Native Brotherhood/ church -- Christian/ traditions -- maintaining/ lifestyle -- subsistence|

23) Tlingit business ventures at the Cottages and in the village.

business -- Tlingit/ Cottages/ handcrafts -- sale of/ trade -- Tlingit/ Merrill, E.W./ Sitka/ Park -- visitors/ Willard, John/ Willard, Jenny/ house -- craft sales/ Mrs. Cook/ garage/ village -- business/ Simpson, Peter/ boatshop -- Peter Simpson/ sawmill -- Sheldon Jackson/ Sheldon Jackson School|

24) Tlingit boatshops in Sitka.

village -- grocery stores/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- father/ boat builder/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandfather/ Howard, George/ change -- World War II/ boats -- changing/ boatshop -- Peter Simpson/ boatshop -- Howard Brothers/ boat -- "Princeton Hall"/ Howard, Glenn/ Howard, Liz/ boatshop -- location/ Pyramid Packing Company/ "Princeton Hall" -- building of|

26) Role of women in Tlingit society and in the Cottage Community.

women -- role of/ Cottages/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Tlingit -- matrilineal/ descendency/ knowledge -- historical/ honor/ Sloan, Amelia/ New Presbyterian Women's Society/ church -- social activities/ church -- elders/ mission -- support of/ Alaska Native Sisterhood/ fundraising/ women -- organized/ New Tlingit/ women -- caretakers|

27) Changes to and the end of the Cottage Community in the 1950s.

women -- role of/ appearance -- public/ Cottages -- alcohol/ Jackson, Sheldon/ alcohol -- problems/ Cottages -- changes/ oldtimers/ residents -- movement/ Brady, Isabella (Sing)/ Navy/ school -- boarding/ community -- dissolving/ Park -- buying property/ Metlakatla Street/ Cottages -- weakening|

28) The Park expanding into the Cottages area, and differences between young people of the Cottages and young people of the village when she was growing up.

Park -- buying property/ community -- response/ Peck, Cyrus/ Maxey, Lucille Sing -- mother/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandmother/ Hays, Ellen Hope -- grandfather/ Cottages -- changes/ social differences -- Cottages and village/ language -- English/ clan -- protocal/ language -- Tlingit/ school -- success in/ childhood -- happiness/ language -- barrier|

29) Significance of the Cottage Community.

Cottages -- significance/ Cottages -- residents/ community -- Tlingit/ Sitka Training School/ Cottages -- origin/ Tlingit -- relations/ Sitka/ community -- growth/ Jukebox -- trigger memories/ society -- new approach/ life -- improvement|

31) Reflections on her work at the Park, and the role of Natives in telling their own history.

Park -- relationship with community/ offense -- lack of/ employment -- Park/ Cultural Center/ Indian/ Natives -- involvement of/ project -- unique|

Growing up in the Cottage Community

(excerpts from Gil Truitt interview)

Click on a section below to hear audio.

2) Growing up in the Cottage Community which bordered Sitka National Historical Park.

Sitka/ Cottage Community/ growing up/ Truitt, Gil -- mother/ James, Dorothy/ Truitt, Gil -- father/ Truitt, Joseph/ Truitt, Gil -- grandmother/ Katlian, Pauline/ family heritage/ punctuality -- importance of/ Sitka/ Totem Park/ Indian River/ Cottages -- history|

3) Life in the Cottage Community and people's subsistence use of the Park area.

Truitt, Gil -- grandfather/ James, Alfred/ Cottages -- construction of/ Cottages -- history/ Simpson, Peter/ boatshop -- Peter Simpson/ Totem Park/ subsistence/ herring -- eggs/ Indian River/ food -- gathering/ Sheldon Jackson School -- respect for/ smelt -- use of|

5) Learning from his grandmother and how education was stressed in the Cottages.

Truitt, Gil -- grandmother/ Cameron, Mrs. Don/ storytelling/ Cottages/ traditional knowledge -- lack of/ language -- Tlingit/ Simpson, Peter/ education -- importance of/ salvation/ culture|

9) His years teaching and coaching, and his interest in the history of basketball in Southeast Alaska.

coaching/ teaching -- challenges of/ basketball/ Southeast Alaska/ basketball -- history of/ Cottages/ Cottage Hall/ Truitt, Gil -- mother/ music/ musicians|

10) The role of music in the Cottage Community, and culture change he has seen.

James family/ musicians/ alcoholism/ music -- disappearance of/ Hays, Ellen Hope/ Cottage Hall/ Cottages -- map of/ Simpson, Peter/ young people -- interest in/ Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act|

11) The layout of and life in the Cottage Community.

Simpson, Peter/ Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Indian River/ foot trail/ Sheldon Jackson School/ smoke houses/ berries -- salmonberries/ salmon -- smoking/ baseball/ Visitor Center -- location of|

13) Social activities in the Cottage Community and names of some of the community's residents.

Cottage Hall/ Sitka Historical Society/ band concerts/ banquets/ Christmas/ family history/ Howard, George/ Simpson, Mary/ Sloan, Lilly/ Hearst, Bernard/ Hearst Chichigof Mine/ Sitka/ Portland|

14) The Cottages history and its role in the development of local organizations.

DeArmond, Bob/ Hearst family/ Cottage Hall -- use of/ basketball/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Jackson, Sheldon/ Simpson, Peter/ Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall/ Littlefield, Esther/ American Legion|

15) Women's activities at the Cottages and the role of Sheldon Jackson School.

Cottages -- women/ basketball -- women/ Sheldon Jackson School/ Presbyterian Church/ Cottage Hall -- disappearance/ Brady, Isabella/ Hope, John|

16) The relationship between Sheldon Jackson School, the Cottages, and living a "clean" life.

dances/ Sheldon Jackson School/ Cottage Hall -- closing of/ Hope, John/ Mission/ control -- social/ change -- social/ Cottages -- concept of/ alcohol -- use of|

17) Troubles with alcohol in the community, and the relationship between the Cottages and local social and political organizations.

alcoholism/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ judicial system/ Presbyterian rule|

18) The role of Cottage residents in developing local organizations continued.

Cottage Community/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Sheldon Jackson School/ Simpson, Peter -- influence on/ education/ "Native state"/ preamble|

19) The history of the Alaska Native Brotherhood, and differences between the Cottages and the Tlingit village in Sitka.

preamble -- intentions/ Cottages/ Simpson, Peter/ Young, Ralph/ Price, Frank/ Alaska Native Brotherhood/ Newell, John/ education/ village -- separation of|

22) Changes in the Park and its influence on Sitka.

flood/ bridge -- loss of/ Cottage Community/ employment -- variance of/ entrepreneurs/ tourists/ Totem Park/ fishing -- salmon/ carpenter/ Price, Frank/ Young, Ralph/ boat builder/ Simpson, Peter/ Newell, John|

25) Growing up in the Cottages in such close proximity to Sheldon Jackson School.

Cottage Community/ growing up/ Sheldon Jackson School/ campus -- beauty of/ baseball/ basketball/ Weeks, Ralph -- coach/ Yaw, Leslie/ activities -- feeling welcome/ Wooster, Roland/ friendship -- lasting/ students -- influence of|

26) Life in the Cottage Community.

Cottages -- loyalty to/ poverty/ food -- lack of/ subsistence -- importance of|

27) Differences between the Cottages and the village, and influence of the military in Sitka.

Hays, Ellen Hope/ Cottage Community/ village -- differences with/ Totem Park/ Sheldon Jackson School/ Indian River/ Sunday School/ Dietrich, Herb/ life -- reflection on/ military/ Servicemen -- respect for| 


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