Ahtna Travel Narratives

A Demonstration of Shared Geographic Knowledge among Alaska Athabascans

Transcribed and Edited by James Kari

Ahtna Travel Narratives

Transcribed and Edited by James Kari

Distributed for University of Alaska Press

Told by Jim McKinley, Frank Stickwan, Jake Tansy, Katie John, and Adam Sanford

143 pages | 23 halftones, 22 maps, 1 CD | 10 1/2 x 8 1/2 | © 2010
Distributed for the Alaska Native Language Center
Paper w/CD $20.00 ISBN: 9781555001056 Published August 2011

Among the world’s foremost pedestrian foragers, the Ahtna tribe possesses a profound system of geographic knowledge that has facilitated travel and spatial cognition in Ahtna and other Athabascan languages. Shedding light on a number of precise landscape classifications, including Ahtna place names and river directionals, these indigenous travel narratives represent walking tours comprising more than one thousand miles of traditional routes and trails in the Ahtna-language area. Providing context for these narratives are maps, photos, interviews, and a wealth of ethnographic, linguistic, historical, and methodological information.


Symbols and Abbreviations

1. ‘Atna’ K’et Kayax ‘el Tl’atina’ Ngge’: Ahtna Villages on the Copper River and in the Klutina River Drainage
       Jim McKinley
Klutina River Drainage Through Time
2. Ben K’atggeh hwts’e’ Denaey ‘Iine ‘Uze’: Personal Names of Chiefs, Tazlina River to Tyone Lake
       Frank Stickwan
Notes on Ahtna Personal Names
3. Saen Tah Xay Tah C’a Lu’sghidel: We Used to Travel Around in Summer and Winter
       Jake Tansy
Cultural Geography of the Hwtsaay Hwt’aene ’the small timber people’
4. Natael Nenn’: The Batzulnetas Country
       Katie John
Solved: The Origin of "Tok"
5. C’uka Ts’ul’aen’i gha Nen’ Ta’stedel dze’: How We Went Hunting Out in the Country
       Adam Sanford
6. Summary of Ahtna Place Names and Riverine Directionals


Review Quotes
Midwest Book Review
“A unique and fascinating study of [the Athabascans] and their culture, language, and lore.”
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