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Rudolph Walton : one Tlingit man’s journey through stormy seas Sitka, Alaska, 1867-1951

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Title: Rudolph Walton : one Tlingit man’s journey through stormy seas Sitka, Alaska, 1867-1951
Author: Shales, Joyce Walton
Degree Doctor of Philosophy - PhD
Program Educational Studies
Copyright Date: 1998
Subject Keywords Walton, Rudolph, 1867-1951; Tlingit Indians -- History; First Nations -- Biography; Alaska Native Brotherhood; Alaska -- History
Abstract: The history of contact with Europeans for Native Americans and the Tlingit people in particular has been well documented as one of extreme pain, suffering, and injustice. It was "survival time" for the Tlingit and very difficult choices had to be made. The life of one Tlingit man, Rudolph Walton, born in Sitka, Alaska in 1867, illuminates this critical time in the history of the Tlingit people. This dissertation is ah exploration of the interplay between competing cultures and interests and it is a quest to understand who Rudolph Walton was and how his life and the choices he made are connected to the larger historic themes and cross-cultural issues in Alaska Native education and religious life. In addition to providing a look at history and at cultural change through an individual's life, choices and experiences, this dissertation is also about the connection between my ancestors' choices and the impact those choices had on the survival of a people. It is at once a macro view and a micro view of the impact of history on Indian people. After the purchase of Alaska by the United States traditional Tlingit life changed forever. The Tlingit were forced on a daily basis to balance demands and pressures made by various Christian religious groups and the U. S. government. They also had to contend with the prejudice of the average American citizen. Most Native American history has been limited to the use of records written by Europeans and Americans. Our understanding of that history is limited because the voice of the Native American is rarely heard. This dissertation fills a gap in the history of Southeast Alaska through an examination of the life of Rudolph Walton. The life of Mr. Walton is important because he left us with a unique set of documents which help us to understand the difficulties he had to face as a Tlingit man during a critical time in the history of Southeast Alaska.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/8592
Series/Report no. UBC Retrospective Theses Digitization Project [http://www.library.ubc.ca/archives/retro_theses/]

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