Valdez Native Tribe Hosts Sea Otter Pelt Sewing Classes

Valdez Native Tribe President John Boone with daughter Sophia and granddaughter Autumn. Autumn has been attending the classes since she was born and John plans on teaching her to hunt soon to keep the tradition alive.

Valdez Native Tribe President John Boone with daughter Sophia and granddaughter Autumn. Autumn has been attending the classes since she was born and John plans on teaching her to hunt soon to keep the tradition alive.

Valdez Native Tribe hosted a sea otter pelt sewing class the week of December 16, 2013. This has been an annual event dating back to at least 2005.

John Boone, President of Valdez Native Tribe, taught the class with daughter Sophia. John did all the hunting and prepping of pelts with his family, including his son, John. He is reimbursed for the skins and other supplies by the tribe through funding from Chugachmiut’s Elders Program, North Pacific Rim Housing Authority, and Johnson

O’Malley funding from the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Andy Allen and Thelma Barnum.

Andy Allen and Thelma Barnum.

Classes usually lasted about three hours or longer, depending on how long people felt like working and chatting. Participants made trapper hats, round hats, pillows and teddy bears.

For more pictures, visit Chugachmiut’s Facebook page.

Thanks to Romona Mooney at the Valdez Tribal Council office for the pictures and information.