Woody Morrison: Ḵ'IIS X̱AAT'ÁAY: (Lava Rock People) - P.O.W. Report

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Woody Morrison: Ḵ'IIS X̱AAT'ÁAY: (Lava Rock People)

Dr. Morrison makes regular posts on the Tlingit and Haida peoples of Alaska facebook page and you are encouraged to follow [here]


Ḵ'IIS X̱AAT'ÁAY: (Lava Rock People)
X̱adaas Gwaayk Aangaay: from 56 deg. N. latitude, 133 deg. W. longitude to 53 deg. N. latitude, 131 deg. W. longitude.

In the Northeastern Pacific, where wind and ocean meet the might of the rain forests, is X̱adaas Gwáayk Áangaay, the territory of the Northern Haida. A common misconception, even among many Haidas, is that these Northern (K’iis Haade or K’aik’aanii Haade) Haidas moved to Alaska some time in the 16th Century, displacing Tlingit People and taking over their village sites. As a result, nearly all of the books written about Haidas make only brief reference to the Northern Haidas; some make no mention of them whatsoever.

Haida Oral History, however, tells a different story. The Storyteller begins...

Gwáay SG̱áanwaay: Spirit Island, (today, Hazy Island lies at 56 deg. N., 133 deg. W.)

The timeless Ocean tides ebb and flow along the rocky shores of the eternal Isle, Gwaii Sganwaay, Spirit Island, where the Southwesterly swells pound ceaseless upon its rocky shores. Here the Storyteller tells of how...

...RAVEN stole the freshwater from PUFFIN... This story establishes the northwest corner of Haida territory the origins of the Nass River and the source of the "brown" water found at the northeastern corner of the Queen Charlotte Islands in British Columbia, Canada.

Near the present day Haida village, Hydaburg, Alaska, is a small bay named Yaahl K'iik (Raven's food) where Raven lived during "Mythical Times". Nearby is another small bay, Xúuts' hini ("Where-The-Brown-Bear-Drinks-Water") and, 20 miles to the south is Xúuts Kwaa (Brown Bear Rock).

Western science denied the existence of Brown Bears on the Prince of Wales Islands, however, there have been recent finds of their skeletons in the caves that honeycomb the the north end of Prince of Wales where, prior to the last Ice age, X̱áataay (Haida People) lived there at a place called Saagwaa Kwaan. Also these caves, as well as others, farther north, near Wrangell, Alaska, reveal the presence of Haidas much earlier than established by academic present authorities.

The history tells of Haidas living on their northern islands and of how the ocean begin to drop, the beaches grew longer and longer as the tides fell lower and lower. At the same time the winters got longer and colder. The People were becoming very uneasy.

Haida History tells, during Giihliits' Dluu (the “myth time”): a warming period during the last Ice Age when the tide came in - a "Flood". At that time they lived in a village near a place called "Juuts'ik" (near Hydaburg, Alaska). The story tells of how the water kept coming in until it came through the trees and covered everything.

The anchors were placed atop the present day "Copper Mountain" and, during the ensuing Centuries following the event, Haidas made an annual pilgrimage to the top of Jumbo Mountain to view the anchors.

These stories will be told in due time.

Áaw tláan gyaahlangáay láa g̱íidang.
That is all there is to the story.

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