Native peoples of Alaska

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Native peoples of Alaska

Post  sarah on Sun Dec 26, 2010 7:00 am

When the Russian discovered Alaska in 1741, they found it occupied by three groups of native peoples—Eskimos, Aleuts, and Indians. Descendants of these natives still live in Alaska.

Most scientists think that the native peoples migrated originally from Asia to North America, not all at once but in wave after wave over thousands of years. Probably the last to enter Alaska were the ancestors of the northern Eskimos.

EskimosOf the different groups of Native peoples, the Eskimos are the most numerous. From earliest times the Eskimos depended upon sea mammals, fish, and caribou for their living. In the 1890’s reindeer were brought from Siberia to start herds as an additional means of livelihood.

Many Eskimos now live in frame houses heated by fuel oil, but they once lived n sod and driftwood huts heated by sea-oil lamps. They did not build snow igloos, as some of the Canadian Eskimos still do, except for emergency shelter.

The Eskimos are superb hunters. They are an energetic people who have long been known for their ivory carving and other arts and crafts. Their way of life is changing as they find opportunities for schooling and for employment in trades and professions.

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