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Effie Williams

William and Effie Williams

Effie Williams was a Koyukon Athabascan from Allakaket, Alaska. She was born in June 1919 to Lilly and Ned Ned. They had a house at Old Bergman, but visited Allakaket for church. Among her uncles were Leon and Billy Bergman. When Effie was very young, she was adopted by Grandma Tilly and she lived with Tilly and Big Susie until Tilly died when Effie was six or seven years old. Effie spent a year living at the St. John's-in-the-Wilderness Mission at Allakaket, then went back to her birth parents. In 1935, when she was sixteen, Effie married William Williams. The marriage was arranged by older members of their families. Effie and William continued to live a traditional subsistence lifestyle in seasonal camps on the Sourth Fork of the Koyukuk River, but moved into Allakaket in 1950 when it became mandatory for their children to attend school. Effie became active in the local Episcopal church, raced sled dogs, and was an expert skin sewer and beader. At the time of her 1992 interview, Effie was working part time for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game tagging skins that trappers brought in so they would be recorded as legally harvested. Through the years, she also worked as a firefighter, and teacher of Athabascan language and culture in the school. For more about Effie Williams, see her obituary in the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner newspaper.

Date of Birth:
Jun 15, 1919
Date of Death:
Dec 16, 2008
Effie Williams appears in the following new Jukebox projects: