Alaska Native Collections – Sharing Knowledge


Gut parka

sanightaaq “fancy gut parka”
Language: St. Lawrence Island Yupik

This kind of clothing is not for hunting.... They just wear it in a ceremonial or whenever there is a dress-up.... It seems to me that we just owe everything to the ancient times, to our ancestors. They had beautiful clothes.

—Estelle Oozevaseuk, 2001

This ceremonial parka is made of winter-bleached intestines from a bearded seal or walrus. It is decorated in a man’s style, using plumes and beak parts from crested auklets. Baby walrus fur was applied along the bottom edge, dyed seal fur to the chest, and strips of seal skin around the hood. People dressed in this style of parka for religious ceremonies such as Ateghaq, a spring ritual to ask God (Kiyaghneq) for good hunting, andKamegtaaq, a thanksgiving that followed the hunting season.

Culture: St. Lawrence Island Yupik
Region: St. Lawrence Island, Alaska
Object Category: Ceremony
Dimensions: Length 124cm
Accession Date: 1923
Source: Arnold Liebes (collector)
Museum: National Museum of the American Indian
Museum ID Number: 123404.000