Place Based Education - Resources for Southeast Alaska Educators

Chilkat Spirit by Mike A. Jackson

Place Names, Maps, and Atlases

Thomas Thorton's Presentation on Southeast Native Subsistence Commission Place Name Project.

The Alaska Geographic Alliance has produced "Alaska in Maps":
Alaska in Maps is a thematic atlas of Alaska. In contrast to a
topographic-type of atlas that emphasizes contour lines and selected
settlement features, a thematic map offers maps of special topics.
Examples of thematic maps found in "Alaska in Maps" include earthquakes, volcanoes, Native language regions, and health care facilities.
This guide describes how to use the interactive maps available on the
Alaska in Maps Internet site. Not only can maps be viewed, but tools are
available to customize the data on the map, navigate the map, and print
a hard copy.
Throughout the rest of the this guide, the term Atlas refers to the
Alaska in Maps Interactive Map website.


Round River Canada
Round River Canada has some reports on the Tlingit Taku River.

Our Land is Our Future - the Taku River Tlingit First Nation Vision and Management Direction for Land and Resources (15.4 MB)

A Conservation Area Design for the Territory of the Taku River Tlingit FirstNation (31.5 MB)

Our Land is Our Future - Summary of the Taku River Tlingit First Nation Vision and Management Direction for Land and Resources (7.4 MB)


The Aboriginal Mapping Network

The Aboriginal Mapping Network is a collection of resource pages for First Nation mappers who are looking for answers to common questions regarding mapping, information management and GIS. It is a network where First Nation mappers can learn about what other native mappers are doing, and share their own experiences throughout the aboriginal community. The AMN has a British Columbia focus, but is not limited to this geographic region. It is intended to be used by any group who is active in aboriginal mapping, from the introductory level, to the advanced. It is a source for both technical information on GIS mapping, to general information relevant to decision makers.

Tlingit Geographical Place Names for the Sheet'Ka Kwaan - Sitka Tribe of Alaska

Traditional Tlingit Country Map (.pdf)

A map of Tlingit tribes, clans, and clan houses.

Chief Kerry's Moose: A guidebook to land use and occupancy mapping, research design and data collection.
By Terry Tobias (available in pdf or book format)

This book is for leaders, administrators, and program personnel at the community or First Nation government level, as well as their consultants and external research people, and community researchers who have had experience with similar kinds of studies.

The information and ideas contained here should be especially useful to anyone who has the responsibilities of designing mapping projects and providing guidance to community interviewers.

"We adopted the approach that is outlined in this guidebook, and built an inventory of quality information about our historical uses of Tsleil-Waututh territory. The resulting maps and documentation are benefiting our negotiations for co-management of traditional lands, and helping us build the relationships and understanding required for the protection of our Aboriginal title and rights. Our land use maps are thus aiding in the survival and growing strength of our nation, and will benefit future generations."
-Chief Leonard George, Chief of the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation.

"A key aspect to documenting and substantiating our connection to our traditional territories is proper land use mapping. As an Aboriginal leader, I know that we need accurate and professionally developed maps to use in consultations, negotiations and possibly litigation, in order to protect our Aboriginal title and rights. I therefore encourage anyone interested in carrying out a cultural mapping project within an Aboriginal nation or community, to read this book. Whether we like it or not, the provincial and federal governments have more plans for our traditional territories and if we want to have a say, we need to establish the facts about our land use. Our own maps will be central to those discussions."
-Chief Arthur Manuel, Chief of the Neskonlith Indian Band, Chairman of the Shuswap Nation Tribal Council, Spokesperson for the Interior Alliance of Aboriginal Nations, and Co-Chair of the Assembly of First Nations Delgamuukw Implementation Strategic Committee.

"The Supreme Court of Canada, in Delgamuukw, said Aboriginal title must be established by evidence of physical and legal occupancy, or tenure. The principal way of establishing physical occupancy is to plot the First Nation's land use activities on a map. Therefore, it is important for nations and their advisors to know how to do this research and how to do it well. Terry Tobias' work provides sound guidance in this regard by an individual who is accomplished, credible and experienced in this field."
- David Nahwegahbow, LL.B., Anishinabe lawyer practising Aboriginal law in Ottawa, and he is also President of the Indigenous Bar Association in Canada.

The Alaska Native Knowledge Network

The ANKN Web site contains: The Angoon and Kake cultural atlases. These links require a user name and password that can be obtained at

"Working on the atlas for me was a real eye-opener. The thrust of the AKRSI is to promote Native ways of knowing. So much of this revolves around looking at how information is woven and connected through image and symbol. The Angoon cultural atlas CD-ROM allowed us to explore these links through Tlingit images and symbols--regalia, art, crests, place names, personal names, etc.--as well as through oral history. Lydia and Jimmy George's work with clan houses helped me see how Angoon Deisheetaan Tlingits connect their regalia and crests to personal and social identity and how the threads of Tlingit identity always lead back to the land. The multimedia format also allowed us to do this with Native voices and to connect Tlingit traditions to modern science and geography in ways that are just not possible in conventional expository writing. When we showed it to teachers in Angoon, they immediately saw potential applications in their classrooms as well as ways to extend the links to other areas of the curricula and Native culture. All this is very exciting and, I think, good for education, heritage preservation and enhancement, and cross-cultural communication and collaboration."
- Tom Thornton

The Traditional Tlingit Country and Tribes Map

The poster includes a comprehensive listing of Tlingit tribes, clans and clan houses, circa the late nineteenth century.

The Southeast Alaska Tribal Electronic Mapping Project

Development of Place-based Education Materials for the
Southeast Alaska Tribal Electronic Mapping Project

Objective: Provide GIS maps and technical support to facilitate access to the Southeast Alaska Native Placenames Database, including integration with existing data on subsistence use areas collected by ADF&G, development of regional and community-based maps for use in classrooms, internet mapping, and other place-based education activities.

Specific Tasks:

  1. Integration of place-names database with regional information on subsistence and natural resources.
    1. Develop integrated GIS database of Southeast Alaska Native Placenames
    2. Compile available GIS base layers for the region, including: towns, coastlines, rivers, land ownership and management, ADF&G subsistence use areas, and shaded-relief terrain map.
    3. Develop ArcView project files on CD-Rom illustrating the place-names database and map products.
  2. Regional Map Development
    1. Update of the Traditional Tlingit Country map showing shaded-relief terrain, tribes, clans and clan houses as well as Tlingit names for selected geographic features (major rivers, bays, islands, etc)
  3. Community-specific mapping
    1. Develop high-resolution (large-scale) maps of Tlingit Placenames for 10 communities.
      1. Angoon
      2. Craig
      3. Haines / Klukwan
      4. Hoonah
      5. Hydaburg
      6. Juneau
      7. Kake
      8. Sitka
      9. Wrangell
      10. Yakutat
    2. Provide these maps in digital format for development of sound-file linked “talking maps” available over the Internet or on CD-Rom

This project will be completed by July 2003.

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