Alaska Native Collections – Sharing Knowledge

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He came through the doorway performing like a shaman. Now he started to perform around the sick man. And he saved the sick man…And he got a great deal of property in exchange, and the property that he received for being called to the sick was also much. At this time he grew prosperous.

—From “Tc!aawu´nk!,” told by Jimmy Sterling, in “Haida Texts and Myths,” 1905

On this shaman’s crown, mountain goat horns carved in the shape of bear claws are fastened to a leather head band. The eyes of the spirit faces at the base of each horn are inset with abalone shell. On solitary spirit quests in the mountains, a shaman might dream of the power to cure sickness, and acquire that ability; or he might be visited by Property Woman who controlled wealth, and become rich through his practice.

Culture: Haida
Region: Southeast Alaska
Object Category: Ceremony
Dimensions: Length 20cm
Accession Date: 1943
Source: Joseph Stanley-Brown (collector)
Museum: National Museum of Natural History
Museum ID Number: E383159