Supporting Information


12/67 Tillicum Chief, John Anderson, 2424 Buker Street, Oly, 98501

12/67 Tillicum Staff Adviser, Jerry Campbell

Chief, John Pearl, 3315 S Quince 352-4013

VC, John Snyder, 720 N 5th, Shelton, WA 426-4134

VC, Pat Libbey, 1107 Olympia Ave, 352-3650

VC, Dave Rajala, 301 S Pearl, Centralia, 736-3543

Bill Hilleary, 2606 Seward Ave, Centralia.

Randy Frisvold, Troop One Scoutmaster, 1983

Butch Haase

Steve Haase

Maury Webber

Jon Reilly


Peter Steinbrenner; Tillicum; Section VC; 1967-1974

Met at 1998 NOAC





1925             Tumwater Area Council formed

                    Original Council Camping Committee: J.W. Davis, I. Ned Wood, Henry Brewer and Hans Cleland                              (Olympia Attorney, first Council President)

1926             Wayne Sanders, Tumwater, got his employer - Hamma Hamma Logging Company to donate the                         site for Camp Cleland.

1927             Camp Cleland opened at Lower Lena Lake (Five 12-day periods per summer at $8.50 per period)                              Max Stroup, first Camp Director; Counselor’s - Norman Bright, Earl Hardy, Flash Partlow and                        Phil Bailey. Second Camp Director was Harry “Tom” Martin

1930’s           Famous college football player and mountain climber, Chet Ullin, was a counselor      

1936             Round purple felt patch Camp 1936 Cleland discovered December 2003

1937             Camp Cleland Round Patch exists – Kern collection

April 1941          Summit Lake site announced for the first time at Council Executive Board Meeting.

June 1941          Black Lake site chosen for 1941 camping season.

July 1941          Change from Black Lake site to private boys camp (Olympus) at Summit Lake. Camp was rented                               from Otto C. Mauthe & purchased in 1945 from him for $5000.

July 20, 1941  Camp Cleland opened for its last year (I’m thinking that due to World War’s use of Summit Lake site, that it was decided to hold off on the closure of Cleland.)

Sep. 1941          Report to Council Executive Board of general destruction at Camp Cleland. The camp was closed,                              but still used occasionally for a specialized camp.

Dec. 1941          Pearl Harbor

1942 - Aug 1945   World War II - Both camps were used as bases to train soldiers for some of these years.

1942             Camp Olympus Patch & Camp Olympus Honor Camp patches exist (Frank Kern collection).

1943                      1943 Wilderness (White felt Bear; Cut Edge; 1943 Wilderness on the patch); Found in 1999 by Frank Kern on the back of a merit badge sash from a man from Yelm, WA. I also have scans of this patch from another sash owned by Donald Severson that has a Camp Cleland patch on it.

July 1944          Camp at Cleland. This camp was always leased from the United States Forest Service.

World War II          Gas rationing and other shortages forces closure of Cleland despite a 99 year lease.

October 1944          Purchasing Olympus.

1944 - 1949          Camp at Summit Lake called Summit Lake Camp or Camp Olympus

March 1945          Cleland still a specialized camp. District camp (a freshman course) and Wilderness Camp (senior                     camping).

                    Wilderness Camp patch (Frank Kern collection).

1945             First year that Camp Olympus/Summit Lake was owned by Tumwater Area Council.

                    Camp Olympus patch exists (Frank Kern collection).

June 1945          Olympus and Cleland summer camps open.

1946             Camp Olympus patch exists (Frank Kern collection).

July 17, 1949          At this Executive Board Meeting, a proposal to have a camp name contest was made.

1950 - 1954          Still being referred to as "Summit Lake" site

1954 - present          Camp Thunderbird.

November 1993   Pacific Harbors Council absorbed Tumwater Area Council.

                    Camp Thunderbird name is left intact.

1994                                Upper Powell Campsite clear-cut and destroyed

2000&2001          Former Scout Executive, Jim Phillips, returns to work at Camp Thunderbird

2001                      Due to expansion of cub resident camp & Webelos camp, Boy Scout camp is only held for one week this year, August 5 – 11.

Original Troop One charter:

H.A. Stewart

Carlton Sears

Fred G. Cook-Troop Committee

Newton C. Bader-Scoutmaster

Testimony on January 27th, 1925



Chapter History


September 26, 1979 Shelton Chapter of OA was called Sa-Heh-Wamish.


Rob Wotton-Chief

Dick Anderson-1st VC

Mark Lester-Secretary/Treasurer


Sa-Heh-Wamish comes from a band of Indians of that name who had inhabited the region of Budd Inlet to the Pacific Ocean.  The name was also the original name given to Mason County when it was seperated from Thurston County on March 15, 1854.


The county name was then changed in 1864 to Mason County in honor of Charles H. Mason, the first Secretary of the Washington Territory and who was also acting as Governor much of the time in the absence of Governor Stevens. (Dr. Harry W. Deegan, History of Mason County, 1971 Ed.)




Original Lodge Totem:                    Kwakiutl Hak

1950's                                        Wolf

06-81 to 11-15-85                     Salmon

11-015-85 to 04-23-94                           Thunderbird




NAME                                         DATES USED  


Sa-Heh-Wamish                                      1979 Chapter Newsletter - Mason Chapter

She-Lok-Um                                          1970's

Too-Tah Pe Chethl                               Prior to 1986

Nagatamen                                           1986-Present





6/25/72 - Penalty for inactive members changed from $3 to $2

June 1976 -  New laws introduced

6/21/87 -  Revision of laws

6/20/81 - New laws introduced by Rob Wotton

11/15/85 - New laws introduced by Bob Hubenthal

10/2/89 -  Revision of laws

4/9/90 -  Revision of laws

1991 - Beginning this year, OA elections in Explorer Troops were banned

1993 - Revision of laws to add Kiona Chapter

From: Steve Wark []
Sent: Sunday, August 21, 2011 12:11 AM
Subject: Tilicum lodge 392
Hello brother Arrowman Kevin, my name is Steve Wark and I was reading the history you have on the Tilicum Lodge 392, and in it said that the kiona chapter was formed in 1993 but i believe it was earlier than that. Back in 1982 i was the Chapter Chief for the kiona Chapter when I was a scout out in morton troop 349.





1979 Trading Flap                                  $3.00

1979 Round Patches issued in 1978           $1.50

1979 Flaps                                            $1.50

1981 Brotherhood Sash                       $4.00

1984 Trading Flap                                  $2.00

1984 Winter Fellowship Neckerchief              $2.50

1984 Backpatch                                  $2.60

1985 Fishy Flaps                                $3.00

June 1985 Pocket Rocket                             $1.40

June 1985 Backpatch                                  $2.60

June 1985 Trading Flaps                      $2.00






11/10/79 - Lodge Event


11/30-12/2/79 Lodge Event


6/20-22/80 Spring Ordeal

Member          $6

Brotherhood          $10
Ordeall           $12

* Brotherhood held on Friday night


9/26-28/80 Fall Ordeal

Member          $7

Brotherhood          $11

Ordeal           $13


6/19-21/81 Spring Ordeal

Member          $7

Brotherhood          $11

Ordeal           $13


1981 Fall Ordeal

Member          $9

Brotherhood          $11

Ordeal           $15


9/17-19/82 Fall Ordeal

Member          $6

Brotherhood          $11



2/18-20/83 Fellowship $7.15


1983 Conclave $15


6/17-19/83 Spring Ordeal

Member          $7

Vigil              $14

Brotherhood          $14

Ordeal           $15.75


9/16-18/83 Fall Ordeal

Member          $7 ($8 Late Fee)

Brotherhood          $12 ($13 Late Fee)

Ordeal           $15 ($16 Late Fee)


6/22-24/84 Spring Ordeal

Member          $8.25 

Brotherhood          $13.50

Ordeal           $11.75 CHECK THIS


9/14-16/84 Fall Ordeal

Member          $7     

Brotherhood          $11

Ordeal           $13


December 1984 - Winter Fellowship $10


6/14-16/85 Spring Ordeal

Member          $8     

Brotherhood          $14

Ordeal           $16


9/27-29/85 Fall Ordeal

Member          $8     

Brotherhood          $

Ordeal           $14


10/18-20/85 Fall Ordeal

Member          $8



12/20-22/85 Winter Fellowship $10         


1986 Conclave $18








Lodge Advisor, Robert McCoy, developed the original idea for the Tillicum Lodge Elangomat Recognition Program. The idea was entertained at the Lodge Executive Committee Meeting on September 9, 1991 by acting Lodge Chief Billy Jackson. Andy Hannah made the motion for the Elangomat Flap proposal and Mike Thompson seconded it. This is the last flap paid for with Tillicum Lodge Funds and could be considered its "death flap".


FALL'92                                      SPRING'93                         FALL'93


Sean Gallagher                                    Joe Clinton                    Dave Carr (Adult)

Jason Kuc                                   Joe Hyer                       Mike McKennedy

Mike McKennedy                        Brian Knap                       Andrew Pond (Adult)

Kevin Rudesill (Adult)           Larry Kuc (Adult)              Dave Ross

Troy Young                                 Travis Prill                         Kevin Stock

                                                Troy Young


Seventeen blue border Elangomat Flaps were made. They have a plastic back compared to the cloth back original silver mylar border elangomat flap.


Frank Kern acquired one of these elangomat flaps.




1972             The 25th Tillicum Lodge banquet was held at the Royal Fork in Olympia.                                     Forty-two arrowmen and family members attended. Hazel Pete (Storm) of the                                        Chehalis Indian Tribe spoke on the subject of Indian traditions and Indian                               relations with the white man.

11-10-79          Held at the Royal Fork; The Honorable Senator Brad Owen, of the 35th                                 District, was the special guest speaker and Master of Ceremonies.

03-22-87          Held at Glorei Dei Lutheran Church in West Olympia, we had an Indian guest                                speaker.

02-20-88          United Methodist Church

03-12-89          King's Table-Capital Mall; 6:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.; $7.00

12-22-90          Held at the Millersylvania Environmental Learning Center; this banquet was                              sparsely attended because of snow and poor weather.

1991             Scout-O-Rama Pizza Feed; Lacey Brewery City; twenty two members at $4.50                      each.

01-11-92          King's Table-East Olympia

12-28-92          United Methodist Church-Downtown Olympia

04-16-94          Gull Harbor Lutheran Church, Olympia.









Several other certificates are awarded at the annual Lodge Banquet.  These included the Executive Board Member of the Year, Has Been Awards, Pizzaman award, Sight for Sore Eye award, and other special awards.














When boys who are in Scouting are directly asked what Scouting has taught them, almost 9 of 10 indicate that Scouting has taught them to take better care of the environment, (89%). Get along with others, (88%). Always give your best effort, (87%). Have confidence in yourself, (87%). Set goals for yourself, (87%). Care for other people, (86%). And treat others with respect, (86%).


Large majorities of men who were once Scouts credit Scouting with many benefits for society in general. Notably, at least eight of ten agree that Scouting and good family life are natural partners, (83%). Scouting is a real benefit to disadvantaged kids (90%). And Scouting helps character development, (94%).


The longer the Scouting experience, the greater the expressed and evident positive effects the program seems to have on Scouts. In a variety of lifestyle factors, men who were Scouts five years or longer are more likely than Scouts as a whole to indicate that Scouting had a positive impact on them. Men are most likely to credit Scouting with positive outcomes on the following lifestyle factors. Ability to work with others. Hobbies and interests. Ability to accomplish specific tasks. Health and fitness. Family life (as a boy).


Among adult men, current demographic factors suggest that being involved in Scouting as a youth contributes to future achievements. 70% of inductees into Who’s Who in America were once Scouts, compared to 515 of all men in the USA. Almost all men (98%) who were Scouts for five or more years graduated from High School, compared to 83% of men who were never in Scouting. 40% of men who where Scouts for five or more years are College Graduates, compared to only 16% of men who were never in Scouting. 33% of men who were Scouts for five or more years have annual household incomes of more than $50,000, compared to 17% of non-Scouts.






Franz Boas is one of the few white men in the world who has extensively studied and documented the Kwakiutl Indian Nation. The Kwakiutl culture is one of the oldest Indian groups studied according to Boas, with a comprehensive study of the Eskimos in 1875 being the first. Boas has written numerous accounts of Kwakiutl history which are used for reference in this write-up and are listed in the bibliography at the end of this report.


To give a fair and accurate description of the customs and traditions of such an important group, we break down this account into several sections: 


Dialect and Geography of the Kwakiutl Indians


          There are many Northwest Indian groups that inhabit land from where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean, on up to and along the Vancouver Island Coast, and on to Alaska. Indian Groups are usually categorized by the type of language that they spoke.  Specifically, on the Western Shores of Vancouver Island between Juan de Fuca and Yakutat Bay, three Kwakiutl Linguistic groups made their villages.


                             1.         Xa-isla, on Gardiner and Douglas Channels

                             2.         He'iltsuq, from Gardiner Channel to Rivers Inlet

                             3.         Kwakiutl, from Rivers Inlet to Cape Mudge


          The main linguistic dialect for the Kwakiutl was called Wakashan. The Nootka group, which inhabits the Cape Flattery area of Vancouver Island, is the closest group to the Kwakiutls'.




          Picture a mountainous coastline with numerous straits and fjords, many large and small islands and dense woods on the mainland. This is the area where the Kwakiutl Indians made their home. This area offered geographic isolation from peoples of the interior and an abundance of food from fishing, hunting, and foraging. This protected area let this group of Indians develop a culture widely unknown and inaccessible to white men.


Politics, Social Organization, and Structure


          Animal totems are the forces in which the Kwakiutl Nation organized under.   Remember the three types of linguistic Kwakiutl groups? They each have animal spirits and totems they follow:


                             Xa-isla:          Beaver, eagle, wolf, salmon, raven, killer whale

                             He'iltsuq:       Raven, eagle, and killer whale


[In these first two groups, the clans specifically are named after their respective animal totem.]


                             Kwakiutl:       All of the above are considered animal spirits, but the                                                         clans are not necessarily named after a specific totem.


          It must be clearly understood, however, that the natives do not consider themselves descendants of the totem. All my endeavors to obtain information regarding the supposed origin of the relation between man and animal have invariably led to the telling of a myth, in which it is stated how a certain ancestor of the clan in question obtained his totem. "All the tribes of the Pacific Coast are divided into a nobility, common people, and slaves. The slaves are not part of the clan, they are captives of war or purchases which can change ownership. "The clan of the Kwakiutl is very organized with certain families being recognized. The ancestor of these clans usually own a crest and privileges that come with it. The male who leads each clan holds the privileges of the crest and acquires them through the potlatch."

          As in most Indian Groups, the Chief is the leader of each clan. Known as very independent and often obnoxious, Kwakiutl chiefs are the leaders of the people and make the decisions which are best for them. An old, Indian legend says:


                    A great cedar dancer is our chief, our tribe

                    it cannot be spanned, our great chief, our tribe.

                    My chief here from long ago,

                    from the beginning of myth time, for you, my tribe


Natural Resources and Basic Needs


          In the dense forests on the western shores of Vancouver Island, old growth stands of red cedar provided a vital resource for the Kwakiutl people. With this softwood, the Indians made clothing, rope, canoes, totem poles and the longhouse. The main diet of the Kwakiutl people was definitely the salmon. This mainstay was abundant and could be stored well through drying it and storing it in oil. For the winter, the salmon was split into strips, dried and roasted over a fire or hung to dry in the longhouses. The many kinds of salmon and their unique migration each year provided a continuity for the Kwakiutl people. Each year, the Indians depend on the salmon to return. This fish is a vital part of the Indians lives and that is why it also was used in their art and religion.

          Since the Kwakiutl people were mainly fishermen, other types of food were secondary, but important. During the spring and summer, many varieties of berries provided the Indians with some of their substanance. Other ocean and coast life forms including oysters, clams, mussels, kelp and seaweed were utilized. Ocean animals such as the whale, sea lions, and seals were also important food sources.

          As you can see, food was very abundant for the Kwakiutl people. Elk, deer, black and grizzly bears, mountain goats, and wolves were actively hunted for in the woods.  Arrows made of stone, bone and copper were used along with maple or yew bows to hunt these animals. Traps were also used for smaller animals. Many birds were also shot down with blunt tipped arrows for food.

          The Kwakiutl people made great use of the abundant resources they had available to them. They were very creative in how they used both living and nonliving material for storing food, making tools, and clothing.




          Today, many of the Kwakiutl ancestors who live on Federally protected reserves on the Island of British Columbia, live in poverty. Most schools try to teach the children of today the Kwakiutl language and dialect of the past, but even that is just a second language, for English is most commonly taught. 

          Indian children often learn traditional values from their family members. At school, they pick up skills which hopefully will help them in the future. The attainment of fishing and handicraft skills are encouraged, but they are not usually required.


The Longhouse


          Within each village of the Kwakiutl, longhouses shelter the various families and clans.  Rectangular in shape, these longhouses were made of cedar planks supported by huge cedar beams. In the house, a fire pit was built for cooking and warmth. Inside the house, rooms were partitioned off for sleeping, socializing, and for storage. Along with the exterior of the longhouse having a painted design, the interior of the house often contained elaborate carvings and decorations. Outside the longhouse, near the entrance, usually stood a large Totempole with the family crests. 




          The Kwakiutl Indians mostly went bearlegged. The daily dress for the Indian usually consisted of a animal skin blanket and/or a garment made of woven cedar bark or other types of grasses and materials. Mountain-goat wool, dog's hair, feathers or combinations of these were often used for making clothing. 

          For Dancing and Ceremonies, wool button blankets are used extensively. The two main colors for these blankets are blue with a red border or black with red border. Mother of pearl buttons are used to accentuate the design.

          The animal spirit used on a particular blanket depends on the crest of the particular family and the animal spirit which it wants to take upon. This design is usually cut out in red cloth and sewed on the blanket. In colder weather, men wear a shirt under the blanket.




          The cedar carved canoe is the most important means of transportation for the Kwakiutl Indians. Often, the canoe and its paddles were elaborately decorated and adorned with symbols and artwork. The canoe was vital in the task of catching enough food, especially salmon, to feed the entire tribe for a year. The Indians spent most of the fishing season out in the oceans and rivers. To catch large amounts of salmon, they often dragged a large net between two canoes. In rivers, they used weirs and fish traps. Later in the season, salmon are harpooned. Whales were also hunted for their meat and oil. The Indian who harpooned the whale usually is regarded as very brave.


Weapons and Warfare


          The Kwakiutl Indians, and other local tribes, made war on each other for several reasons. These include capturing slaves, securing material goods, valuable resources and to acquire land. Each tribe would recruit war leaders who would lead the other Indians.

          Secret  Rituals were performed before going to war. These rituals were appeals to the animal spirits to help them succeed in the fights. Most of the battles were during the night,  and rarely were they sea-battles. 

          Weapons used in the warfare included clubs, dagger, bows & arrows and spears.  Wooden helmets and armor were also commonly used as protection (Rogers, pg 14).


The Potlatch


          The method of acquiring rank in the Kwakiutl society is by impressing upon other tribal members that you are deservant of it. The father of a male Indian child acquires rank for him by offering wool blankets to other members of the tribe at the potlatch. To acquire more names for their children and in turn more nobility, the parent must offer more quantity of blankets or other items for each level gained. Eventually, the boy receives a potlatch name wherein the father gives up his council seat for his son. At his initiation on the council, the boy wears a black headband and two black stripes running down his face from each eye (as in tears). The father takes his new place among the older men in the tribal council.

          Different clans represented on the council exchange blankets and property at the tribal meeting (potlatch) trying to gain favor for the male child from a particular clan. All Kwakiutl men desire to be noble and have lots of property and wealth. Boys of different clans are pitted against one another in trying to see who can be most noble. The chiefs and entire clans end up trying to out-do rival clans; this often results in fighting. 

          Othertimes, a particular clan may try to win favor by offering quantity of blankets and property to a rival clan or offer a feast where blankets and gifts are lavished upon the guests. This showing of superiority often works when trying to move up the rank scale.  Sometimes people become heavily indebted trying to out-do their rival.

          Thousands of wool blankets, coppers, canoes and even houses were sometimes given up to the rival clan. Property may even be destroyed to damage the prestige of the rival and gain distinction for yourself. 




          In marriage, the father of the son tries to purchase the daughter of the member of a nearby clan. By giving up his possessions for this honor, the father's son gains a new clan name, crest and often much property when the couple have children. The new son-in-law of the other clan leader has gained a new clan and rank.


Healing and Religion


          The Kwakiutl people fear ghosts and the evil spirits. They often rely on the shaman or medicine man of the village to remove the evil that these forces have bestowed on them.  The shaman is also a force of the Indian Group which can be used as a weapon against the Indians enemies. There is an entire Ghost Dance Ceremonial relating to this. When you look at the beliefs of the Kwakiutl, they often believe that if a shaman cannot cure them, it was meant that they perish.

          The shaman can cause and cure disease. The Kwakiutl believe that a shaman can actually throw evil and sickness into the bodies of his enemies. There are also diseases that shamans can catch by touching humans. 

          Shamanistic magic includes throwing powers at others. They can throw woodworms, salmon harpoons and powers which can cause transformations. People are transformed into gulls. He takes back what he has thrown and the people are now human again.

He throws his powers again and they become deer. "When a shaman wants to show his powers, he pushes a branch under the skin of the left side of his chest, closes the opening by rubbing over it, and later on, when his rival cannot find the disease, he extracts it from his own body."

     The shaman cures sick persons by sucking out the disease. After sucking the disease out, he blows his breath on the patient. A shaman can take the sickness out of his own body. In one instance, a shaman actually cured a person by sucking arrows out of her body.

          Shamans are paid for their services. The prices paid to them are very high: slaves, canoes, blankets, sea otters and princesses are mentioned. A shaman who cures a supernatural being receives a painted house and the princess of the chief whom he has cured.


Ceremonials, Purification, and Dancing


          The Winter Ceremonial is the most important Kwakiutl event during the entire year.  It is a festive time of ceremonies and dance welcoming the change of the young boy into new men. Prior to the beginning of the Winter Ceremonial, or any special ceremony, the participants must purify themselves. Hemlock and hellebore are used for purification and often are known for removing the human smell which is important when you consider the transition of the human form to the animal spirit form during the ceremonies. Red cedar is distributed to all present members at the beginning of the Winter Ceremonial.

          As mentioned, purification is very important. The body is often purified by being rubbed with tips of the branches of balsam fir until it bleeds. Rock seaweed and cedar are also used as purifiers.

          The body of the cannibal dancer of the wolves has yellow pollen all over him.  Dancers don shredded cedar bark dyed red with alder bark. During the winter ceremonial, a head ring, neck ring, arm rings & ankle and knee rings of red cedar and white mix can be worn.

          Little body painting is used in Kwakiutl Ceremonial Dancing. The only time this has been seen is in dances where criminals or shamans are trying to be represented. In this case, the face is painted black.

          In Kwakiutl Dancing, a symbol of the returning novice (beginner dancer) of the winter ceremonial is the hemlock sprig. One of the novices has a small sprig of hemlock plaited in the nape of his head, which then is taken out, becomes a larger pole. A novice put supernatural gifts into his hair and ties them in with hemlock twigs. Novices dance with head ring, neck ring, arm rings & leg rings of hemlock branches.

          The cannibal wears the head and neck ring in his first dance. The body is purified by bathing in cold water and rubbing the skin with hemlock branches.

          To achieve the overall effect of the Winter Ceremonial, the Kwakiutl Dancers perform throughout the evening. Musically, beating drums, rattles, whistles and bells supplement the singing of the dancers. Songs and dances accompany all the ceremonials.

The most popular type of drum used in ceremonial dancing is the box drum. All ceremonial dances are accompanied by the beating of boards with batons. In the winter dances, batons are beaten before and during the dances. The singers who beat time on boards and on boxes sit in the rear of the house. There is a beating of time when the uninitiated enter a dancing house.

          People sing whenever happy events occur. There are many songs that have no ceremonial meaning. The cradle song is sung by forty men for a child when it is born.  Songs are also used for mocking people. In dancing, songs are sung as a sign of the return of the novices (beginning dancers) who have been taken away by the spirits. Generally it is simply stated that winter dance songs are sung after the return of the novice and also to pacify the dancers. They are not a vital part of the ceremony.

          After making several visits to the land of the Kwakiutl Indians, Franz Boas attempted to document by phonograph the many complex songs of this culture. With the help of John C. Fillmore and Kwakiutl Indian people, many songs were recorded and transcribed. As noted, these songs were very choppy and difficult for even Mr. Boaz to document correctly.  He says, "The texts of Indian songs, phrases, and legends (in his books) do not lay any claim to philological accuracy. They are merely inserted here as authenticating the translations and the material in this paper. It may be that a further study of the songs will modify the translations in many respects. The obscurity of the songs is often very great, and my knowledge of the language is not sufficient to overcome the difficulties of an adequate translation."

          As mentioned, rattles of various forms are used by the dancers during the ceremonials. The ghost dancers have a rattle that looks like a skull. A large rattle for taming the cannibal dancer and for reviving the dead is given as a supernatural gift.

Musical instruments are used in other places also. When a hunter finds a whale, he sings his sacred song and swings his rattle. In the most sacred dances whistles are used imitating the voices of the initiating beings.

          Masks have always been an important accessory for the Dancers and participants in the Kwakiutl Ceremonials. Masks are put on when the Dancers are about to take on the mythical form of the animal spirit that they represent. The Kwakiutl believe that the masks are gifts of supernatural beings and must be worn in all ceremonial dances. Usually these masks have movable parts such as a beak that opens and shuts with a pull of a string. A design of how to make a mask like this is attached to this report. A picture depicting a dancer with a wolf head-mask is at the end of this report. It is from the book of Kwakiutl Legends by Whitaker.

          Many Kwakiutl legends speak of the battles between Thunderbird and Killer Whale.  In one such legend, the myth people do not always use their own masks. When they make war on Thunderbird, they borrow the masks of the salmon. The bravest warriors: mink, deer, elk and otter put on the masks of the spring salmon; the rest of the people those of the sockeye, silver, steel-head, and dog salmon; the weakest ones those of the humpback salmon.            After the animals have made an artificial whale, they borrow the whale mask, apparently in order to cause the artificial whale to go like a real whale.

          Many gestures, including hand and body movements, are used in Kwakiutl dancing and Northwest Coast Dances. Please refer to the copy of the appendixes from Franz Boas Ethnography at the end of the bibliography of this report (Boas, 1 pg. 372-375).


The World and the Animal Spirits according to the Kwakiutl


          In terms of spiritual identity, the world as the Kwakiutl knew it in their time was divided. The upper world was the home of the sun, the moon, the start of mankind, the thunderbird, and his relatives, and the ancestors of many of the tribal units. It is known as the world beyond the ocean, the home of the chief of the salmon and of a few other supernatural beings.

          The lower world contained all things on land including animals and most birds.  It also contained what is below the ocean, sea monsters and serpents.

          In the spiritual world, all the quadrupeds and birds lived together. The chiefs of the quadrupeds are the wolf, mink, and deer. The woodpecker and eagle are chiefs of the birds in the lower world. The birds of the upper world included Thunderbird and Raven, who are fierce enemies. Thunderbird is also enemies of the wolf, mink and deer. In one dance, a tricky mink transforms four arrows into a rope which he uses to climb up to the sky.

          Prominent figures in Kwakiutl tales are the Thunderbird and his younger brother, and most important of all, the Cannibal Spirit. The main Kwakiutl cannibal ceremonial is about a Nimkish youth who found the Cannibal-of-the-North-end-of-the-world at the foot of a precipice from which the spirit issued flying. This ceremonial is part of the larger winter ceremonial. This is a very private ceremonial which is reserved for traditional Kwakiutl Indian families. Our lodge prefers to portray in our dances battles between the Thunderbird and other animal spirits and the relationships between the Thunderbird and the people.




The Thunderbird is a mighty and dominant spirit. When he is soaring there is lightning and his eyes glow with electricity.  He also produces windstorms with a single movement of his massive wings. The food of the Thunderbird is the double-headed serpent and the killer whales. He leaves the salmon for the Kwakiutl for which he protects. He wears the woodworm blanket, which produces lightning. 

          Many Dances performed by the Kwakiutl dancers portray the fighting between the Thunderbird and the Killer Whale. The Chiefton dance is the best example.


Killer Whale


          The killer whale is a very prominent figure in Kwakiutl mythology. He lives in the west at the outer side of the world. The journey to his house takes four days. The killer whale often visits this side of the ocean to cause havoc to the Kwakiutl and their protector, the Thunderbird. His village is at the head of a long narrow inlet, and the dolphins are his warriors. The sea lion is his messenger and slave.




          The voracious Raven who is often punished for his greed and deceit is the all-important figure in Tsimshian and Kwakiutl mythology. While among the Tsimshian these two traits are combined in the person of the Raven, among the Kwakiutl Mink and Raven are the tricksters while the transformer is an independent human figure.


The Kwakiutl Today


          The Kwakiutl Indian Nation, like many of other groups, were extensively studied and manipulated by the white man civilization. People like Franz Boas worked very hard to document and preserve many of the artifacts and ceremonials for future generations. Other people, less kind, took advantage of the Kwakiutl and their many talents. They took items of value to the Indians and much of their rights and land. Along with that, they also introduced previously unknown diseases to this formerly secluded group. 

          Today, the Kwakiutl are few in numbers, spread throughout British Columbia, Canada and the State of Washington. Many museums in these areas have extensive collections of Kwakiutl artifacts. Some Kwakiutl ancestors live in Washington and have made totem poles, button blankets, masks and other artwork to sell and display in museums.  These handicraft makers are only a few of the many. Most Kwakiutl ancestors find employment where it is available, with the commercial fishing and lumbering industries providing the most jobs.

          Although modern 20th century has affected and changed the Kwakiutl, there are still Federal Reserves where traditional values can still be found. The settlement at Cape Mudge is one very fine example of how the Kwakiutls really lived hundreds of years ago.  Longhouses and totem poles dot the landscape. Nature is still plentiful, with all it has to offer. Gone are the Potlatches (which are still outlawed in British Columbia), the powerful Chiefs, and many of the Ceremonies and Dances have disappeared, but among the Kwakiutl ancestors, strong family bonds, with traditional and modern beliefs, could never fade.




          Northwest Indian Culture is very important when you consider how Indian Heritage has been an integral part of the Order of the Arrow. We have deep appreciation for what they believe in and what they accomplished. We especially admire their customs, ceremonies and dancing. Most important of all, we have great respect for their traditions which we incorporate into our lodge.


Bibliography and Sources Cited


1.       Boas, Franz. Contributions to the Ethnology of the Kwakiutl. Columbia Univ. Press,                     New York, 1925.


2.       Boas, Franz. Kwakiutl Culture as Reflected in Mythology. NW Room, Washington              State Library, Printed by J.J. Augustin in Glueckstadt and Hamburg,                     Germany, 1935.


3.       Boas, Franz. Kwakiutl Culture as Reflected in Mythology. American Folk-Lore                 Society G.E. Stechart and Co., New York, 1935.


4.       Boas, Franz.  The Social Organization and the Secret Societies of the Kwakiutl             Indians. Johnson Reprint Corp., London and New York, 1970.


5.          Goldman, Irving.  The Mouth of Heaven. John Wiley & Sons, New York & London,                   1975.


6.          Rogers, Edward S. Indians of the North Pacific Coast.  Royal Ontario Museum,                  Canada, 1970.


7.          Whitaker, Kwakiutl Legends.


8.          Squaxin Indian Tribe

          SE. 70 Squaxin Lane

          Shelton, WA 98584