Stories From The Past

  • Published: December 2003
  • Format: Saddle Stitch Softcover(Color)
  • Pages: 52
  • Size: 8x10
  • ISBN: 9781412012607
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A collection of short stories by Lower Kuskokwim School District elementary school students based on their interviews with Elders in their communities. The Yukon Kuskokwim Delta region of Alaska, where the Yup'ik and Cup'ik have lived for over ten thousand years, provides the background for this beautiful collection of Traditional Stories, Stories about Ways of Life, Subsistence Stories, Hunting Stories and Ghost Stories.

The Stories from the Past project was developed and implemented by Laura Jeane Story Schlapkohl, an Americorps*Vista Volunteer under the direction of Joan Hamilton, the Yupiit Piciryarait Museum Director-Curator during the spring of 2003. The Association of Village Council Presidents and the Yupiit Piciryarait Museum together supported the Stories from the Past Writing Competition.

Stories from the Past Writing Competition

The Stories from the Past Writing Competition began in January 2003 with the announcement to elementary schools throughout the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta Region that submissions to the competition would be accepted through April 1, 2003. The Stories from the Past Writing Competition required students to interview an Elder in their community, and to write a story based on the interview. Students were encouraged to write in both English and Yup'ik, adding to the language preservation aspects of the project. As of April 1, 2003 we received seventy entries from four schools to the Stories from the Past Writing Competition.

Schools who participated in Stories from the Past 2003
Akiuk Memorial School, Akiuk, Alaska
Chefornak School, Chefornak, Alaska
Kilbuck Elementary School, Bethel, Alaska
Kuinerramiut Elitnaurviat, Quinhagak, Alaska Grand Prize Best Collections of Stories
Teachers who participated in Stories from the Past 2003
April Blevins, Kilbuck Elementary School
Meg Gag, Akiuk Memorial School
Sherry Marousek, Kuinerramiut Elitnaurviat
Eric Pederson, Kuinerramiut Elitnaurviat
Nick Straw, Chefornak School
Students who participated in Stories from the Past 2003
Akiuk Memorial School
Danya Andrews, Interview with George Keene, Sr.
Grand Prize Individual Story Winner
Natasia Anvil, Interview with Lucy Kassel
Harry Berlin, Interview with Daniel Berlin, Jr.
Michael Berlin, Interview with Rhonda Berlin
Anastasia Brink, Interview with Lucy Brink
George Isaac, Interview with George Keene, St.
Renae Keene, Interview with Lena Keene
Michael Martin, Jr., Interview with Marie A. Charles
Sherry Oscar, Interview with Marie A. Charles and Molly Oscar
Harry Slim, Interview with Eddie Andrew
Sillufie Thomas, Jr., Interview with Cecil Active
Naomi White, Interview with Moses White, Sr.
Edward Wassillie, Interview with Dora Wassillie
Chefornak School
Janelle Kinegak, Interview with Eliza Fairbanks
Thomas Mael, Interview with Bob Tunuchuk
Bretina Agnus, Interview with Cyril Alexie
Vicki Wiseman, Interview with Josephine Wiseman
David Chagluak, Interview with Martina Chagluak
Dana Gerhart, Interview with Eliza Fairbanks
Kilbuck Elementary School
Emerie Fairbanks, Interview with Debbie Fairbanks
Santee McKay, Interview with Arleata Snell
Susan Dostert, Interview with Donna Carpenter
Max Fancher, Interview with Charlene Fancher
Whitney Walker, Interview with Debbie Walker
Avery Atti, Interview with Trevor Henderson
Delwen Samuelson, Interview with Abigail Samuelson
Randy Hanson, Interview with Abigail Samuelson
Dustin Hayden, Interview with Rafe Johnson
Sumo Walker, Interview with Shirley Lawson
Dylan Stanton, Interview with Mike Stanton
Jenny Klejka, Interview with Jackie Klejka
Leland Rogers, Interview with Ina Morgan
Trevor Henderson, Interview with Rose Henderson
Kendrick Lange, Interview with Jacquie Campbell
Elizabeth Turrentine, Interview with her aunt
Brooke Charlie, Interview with Tonya Charlie
Kathryn Medinger, Interview with Mary Kay Medinger
John Street, Interview with Teddy Street
Nancie Grifka, Interview with Clair Grifka
Henry Thorne, Interview with Ina Morgan
Cheryl George, Interview with Winnie Billy
Marissa Hunter, Interview with Mary Uttereyuk
Danielle Beaver, Interview with Susan Murphy
Kuinerramiut Elitnaurviat
Krystin Beebe, Interview with Paul Beebe
Charlene Church, Interview with Paul Beebe
Vera Cleveland, Interview with Paul Beebe
Zane Debilt, Interview with Louisa Britton
Travis Nick, Interview with Lousia Britton
Arthur Abalama, Interview with Annie Cleveland
Danny Abalama, Interview with Annie Cleveland
Christopher Mark Jr., Interview with Kenneth Cleveland
Michael Smith, Interview with Kenneth Cleveland
Lonry Strunk, Interview with Kenneth Cleveland
Robert Guest, Interview with Olinka Donahuk
Willie Nelon, Interview with Edith Evans
Lynn Church, Interview with Mary Ford
Christina Ford, Interview with Mary Ford
Olivia Guest, Interview with Mary Ford
Kendra Cleveland, Interview with Dora Green
Marcella Jones, Interview with Dora Green
Martin Roach II, Interview with Oscar Friendly
Kristy A. Mark, Interview with Annie Mark
Julius Henry, Interview with John Mark
Eric Brown, Interview with Henry Matthew
Brittany Andrew, Interview with Jakub and May Nelson
Carissa Cleveland, Interview with Jakub and May Nelson
Richard Cleveland, Interview with Jakub Nelson
Kera Foster, Interview with Carrie Pleasant
Jeffrey Matthew, Interview with Carrie Pleasant
Alicia Sharp, Interview with Carrie Pleasant

During the month of April, a committe of judges at the Yup'it Piciryarait Museum and Allen Joseph of AVCP selected the Grand Prize Best Collection of Stories and the Overall Individual Story Winner

Kuinerramiut Elitnaurviat of Quinhagak, Alaska was awarded the Grand Prize Best Collection of Stories.

Danya Iqvarta Andrews of Akiuk Memorial School was awarded as the Overall Individual Story Winner for her story "The Grandmother's Song".

On March 16, 2003 the local Bethel band Los Esposos played a free concert at the Museum as a fund raiser for Stories from the Past. This event, which nearly 70 people attended, raised funds for the Stories from the Past Writing Competition and Exhibit. The Bethel Lion's Club also donated to the Stories from the Past Writing Competition. The funds from the Museum Benefit Show and from the Lion's Club were used to put together the Stories from the Past Exhibit, and to pay for prizes for all of the students who participated. Every students who submitted a story to Stories from the Past received a medal of participation.

Trophies were awarded to the winning school and to the winning student Danya Andrews.

The Stories from the Past Exhibit opened at the Yupiit Piciryarait Museum on May 20, 2003. The Stories from the Past exhibit features every story received this year. Traditional Stories, stories about ways of life, subsistence stories and ghost stories decorated the museum walls. The Stories from the Past Exhibit also featured paintings by Bethel Regional High School art students. The high school art students, under direction of their teacher Jayne Hotaling, interviewed Elders in the community and created pieces inspired by their interviews.

The Stories from the Past project created opportunities for Elders to teach youth, strengthening the bond between generations. Students were given the chance, whether through writing or painting, to creatively express and preserve traditional knowledge. As part of a language and culture preservation project, the stories will remain at the Yupiit Piciryarait Museum and at libraries in the region fo

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