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Genuine Totem Pole For U. Of M.

Genuine Totem Pole For U. Of M. image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

Tho university has just received an othor valuable gift from its represent ative apon the Harriman Alaska ex perlition, Mr. Leon J. Cole, assistan in zoology. Lüüü At a point a short distauee abov ( 'ape Fox, the party visited a deserte Kingit village in whieh were 20 Toten poles in a fair state of preservation The largest of these - 50 feet in length and four feet in diameter - to gether with several others of less di meiision, were transferred to the hok of the vessel and will later he exhibit ed in other maseunis. Rejecting ex terior Totem poles a,s too unweildy fo our liimted acconimodations, Mr Cole secured from the iliterior of on of the better class of houses, a speci u:en as interestinsr and in a inueh bet ter state of preservation than were tliose that had been exposed to the weather. The house was 30x35 fee in dimensions, was built of vertically placed pnneheons and mili boards The main supports of its rather ña roof were tour posts placed two a each end of the house, for support ins, the heavy roof timbers. In front o: each of the rear posts stood a Toten column, one of which may be seen to day for the first time in the museum. ït is 10 feet long by three feet wide and represents a bear sitting upon its . hannches. With its fore paws the bear grasps the arms of a man whose lower limbs liave disappeared into the fyear's month and whose expression o: apprehensive horror suggests fear thai the bear has iiot finished his nieal. Among the Alaskan Iudian.s each faniily has its Totem, which is a fig■ure of the animal from which the family is supposed to have descended. The owner of the house from which this column was taken doubtless belonged to the family with the bear f Totem. Althongh the erectiug of such a v ünnin frequently mcans mnch priva don ou the part of its owner, it is [made the occasion of great feasting land gratines one of his highest ambiI ions. In addition to the thanks due ■ Mr. Cole for his thoughtfulness id labor in securing this most interBting relie of a declining custom, we ■ i indebted to E. H. Harriman for W i generosity in delivering the col■ nu at the Anu Arbor depot free of " xpense.