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Nuu-chah-nulth Photograph collection
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Man driving a motorcar decorated for a parade

Image of a car in an unidentified parade. This image may have been taken during the same parade in which a photograph of Chief Dan Watts holding a placard saying “we are the real native sons of Canada” was taken. This image can be found at the Alberni Valley Museum, PN01873.

Nuu-chah-nulth headdresses

Photograph of two Nuu-chah-nulth headdresses. These headdresses were brought by Annie Tlehwituu-a as thuch-haamis from the Yuuthluu-ilthat-h to Kwitchiiniom at the time of their marriage. One of the headdresses was purchased by John Hauberg of Seattle, a major benefactor of the Seattle Museum of Art.

Saatlsaach or Samiilth ceremony

A crowd gathered on a beach watches what appears to be a Saatlsaach or Samiilth ceremony as indicated by the K’aanaatla, the man in the foreground in a stooped posture with a sheet running from his heads down the length of his backs. The K’aanaatla mimics a wolf. He holds short sticks in each hand which represent the animals’ lower limbs and protects his hands from the barnacles and seashells on the beach. A yashmakats (canoe) visible in the central part of the image has had the tip of its bow kwama sawn off to facilitate its use on sealing schooners in the Bering Sea.

Saatlsaach or Samiilth ceremony

Image shows what may be a Saatlsaach or Samiilth ceremony, as indicated by the K’aanaatla, the two men in the foreground in a stooped posture with sheets running from their heads down the length of their backs. The K’aanaatla are mimicking wolves. They hold short sticks in each hand which represent the animals’ lower limbs and protect their hands from the barnacles and seashells on the beach.

The man with the black hat and black paint on his cheeks is likely the head K’aanaatla. He carries two pieces of wood to naskshitl (create a rapid, steady beat) or in case one of the K’aanaatla drops theirs. Picking up an object dropped by a K’aanaatla during a ceremony would be tantamount to admitting the K’aanaatla had made a mistake and was therefore refrained from.

In the background, lines of large boulders on the beach indicate canoe runs. On the viewer’s right-hand side of the image, a pole laid perpendicular to the canoe run is likely a cedar sapling used to protect canoes against the gravel beach and to facilitate sliding canoes out of the water.

Saatlsaach or Samiilth ceremony

A crowd observes what appears to be a Saatlsaach or Samiilth ceremony as indicated by the K’aanaatla, the two men in the central part of the image in a stooped posture with sheets running from their heads down the length of their backs. The K’aanaatla are mimicking wolves. They hold short sticks in each hand which represent the animals’ lower limbs and protect their hands from the barnacles and seashells on the beach.Behind them, an individual next to the tarp may have ts’iilthaen “eagle down” on his head.