Alaska Native Collections – Sharing Knowledge


Waterproof mittens

iġałiyauraq “pair of waterproof mitts”
Language: Bering Strait Iñupiaq

Long sealskin mittens like this pair from King Island were worn at sea to protect against cold water. They have drawstrings at the top and decorative tufts of polar bear fur. The reddish-brown color is from alder bark dye, and the white is seal skin that was bleached in freezing weather.

Culture: Iñupiaq
Region: King Island, Alaska
Object Category: Clothing
Dimensions: Length 61cm
Accession Date: 1880 (approx.)
Source: E. W. Nelson (collector)
Museum: National Museum of Natural History
Museum ID Number: E048381