The Archaeology of a Russian Period Alutiiq Work Camp on Kodiak Island, Alaska


The site of Mikt’sqaq Angayuk (KOD-014) on eastern Kodiak Island provides an intimate view of Native Alutiiq responses to the colonial labor regime imposed by 19th century Russians in Alaska. Recent excavation of KOD-014 through the Alutiiq Museum’s Community Archaeology Program revealed a well-preserved Alutiiq style sod house and associated faunal midden dating to the 1830s. The midden was rich in cod remains, and the artifacts comprised mostly colonially-introduced products including metal hunting and trapping gear and European ceramics. These finds dovetail with Russian historical evidence to suggest the site’s use as an odinochka: a small seasonal encampment where Alutiiq workers were conscripted to fish, hunt, and trap on behalf of the Russian-American Company. Yet the workers’ economic strategies likewise involved a measure of individual autonomy as revealed in the distinctly Alutiiq ways some imported products were used, and evidence that residents also pursued subsistence aims of their own.

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The Archaeology of a Russian Period Alutiiq Work Camp on Kodiak Island, Alaska. Amy Margaris, Mark Rusk, Patrick Saltonstall, Molly Odell. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397577)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -178.41; min lat: 62.104 ; max long: 178.77; max lat: 83.52 ;