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Margaret Eskilida

Margaret Eskilida was interviewed by Bill Schneider, Ruth Ann Warden, and Margaret's daughter, Millie Buck, on June 8, 1999 at Millie's and her husband, Billy's, house in Glennallen, Alaska. Margaret was not feeling well, so the interview was short with lots of references to how difficult it is to know what to say in such a general interview. Millie provided some help in placing her mother's life in perspective and it is clear that Margaret is talking to Ruth Ann who is a young woman. This interview was done months after Bill had interviewed Millie.

Digital Asset Information

Archive #: Oral History 99-24

Project: Wrangell-St.Elias National Park
Date of Interview: Jun 8, 1999
Narrator(s): Margaret Eskilida
Interviewer(s): Bill Schneider, Ruth Ann Warden, Millie Buck
Location of Interview:
Location of Topic:
Funding Partners:
National Park Service
Alternate Transcripts
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1) Introduction and early childhood memories of Chitina

2) Margaret's memories of Chitina when she was a little girl

3) Roadhouses

4) Trains coming through Chitina and the first time seeing a car

5) Working in a kitchen at the roadhouse and the kind of work people did in the old days

6) Getting married and starting a family

7) Traveling back and forth from Chitina to Anchorage

8) Dad sells wood to make money, fishing and trapping

9) Older people telling stories and the different kind of stories told for certain situations

10) Stories and the different kinds told for certain situations

11) Roadhouses and what it was like to work there

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After clicking play, click a section of the transcript to navigate the audio or video clip.


Section 1: school\ Chitina\ tent -- living in\ school -- log cabin\ language -- learning, understanding

Section 2: town -- little\ houses -- not too many\ Tonsina -- place of birth\ Frank -- brother\ John -- brother\ sisters -- deceased\ Chitina -- moving to\ school -- attending\ Copper River\ school -- starting\ trapping -- missed school\ help -- none\ hard living\ dad -- no job\ trapping\ hunting\ road work\ gravel -- none\ horse and wagon

Section 3: Kenny Lake\ travel -- sled\ Copper Center\ Chitina\ learning\ students\ traveling -- people helping\ school -- Native children\ school -- attending\ trapping -- none when attending school\ help -- none

Section 4: train tracks\ boxcars\ cars\ gravel -- putting down\ Kenny Lake -- roadhouse\ Tonsina\ Chitina\ horses\ food\ rooms\ children -- place to eat

Section 5: wood -- stocking\ salary\ horse -- riding\ Kennecott\ McCarthy\ celebration -- 4th of July\ road -- cutting open\ road -- Chitina to Tonsina\ gravel truck\ hard work\ shoveling\ plows\ graders

Section 6: education -- self taught\ work -- dietary kitchen\ work -- raising children\ retirement -- checks\ work -- very hard\ Chitina\ working -- in town\ children -- nine\ stories -- telling them to children\ garden\ planting for winter

Section 7: Frank -- brother\ Alice -- sister (died)\ Anchorage -- worked\ Dad -- old, sick\ dad -- lived with her and Frank\ garden -- potatoes, turnips, lettuce, cabbage, carrots\ garden -- big\ enough food for winter\ vegetables -- root cellar\ school -- kept food under floor\ house\ tent -- lived in one for a while

Section 8: dad -- cut wood -- sold for food\ trapping\ fishing\ day fishing\ hunting\ no freezing -- dry it\ hanging it up\ king salmon\ fisheries\ nets\ dip netting\ nets -- twisting\ mother

Section 9: storytelling\ sweatbath\ house -- in woods\ thinking -- different\ different things\ evening -- take steambath, stories then told\ stories -- bedtime stories for children\ stories -- learning, living, survival

Section 10: legends\ stories -- to learn by\ lessons -- morals\ teaching stories

Section 11: roadhouse -- every 15 miles\ horses and sleds\ great grandfather (Margaret's grandfather)\ Tonsina -- ferry across\ 1st Indian in Alaska to have business license\ Lower Tonsina\ Doc Billum?