This collection consists of nine audio recordings concerning Thomas Ukas and his son Harry Ukas, recorded between circa 1971 and 1990. The recordings primarily contain biographical information on Thomas and Harry Ukas, as well as detailed content on the Kiks.ádi and Teeyhittaan clans, and other Wrangell clans and history.
The six recordings concerning Thomas Ukas were recorded by him at his home circa 1971. Thomas Ukas was trained to know the history of his people and clan, some of which is shared on these recordings. This includes historical information on the history of the Wrangell Kiks.ádi, information on the various Chief Shakes and the Chief Shakes Clan House and totems, recounting of traditional stories, and Tlingit relations with Russians. Also of note are Thomas Ukas’ words on his involvement/participation in the Civilian Conservation Corps during the 1930s when Southeast Alaska’s totem parks and some clan houses were created and/or restored via federal Works Relief Project. These six recordings are primarily all in English, excluding when Thomas Ukas sings some songs with his wife Josie Ukas. One recording contains approximately 10 minutes of Josie Ukas speaking about her life and the establishment of the Alaska Native Sisterhood at Wrangell.
The following three recordings concerning Harry Ukas were recorded circa 1990, while Ukas was in the St. Anne’s Nursing Home in Juneau. In these recordings Harry speaks about his life history and mentions some of the cultural history and heritage of the Wrangell Kiks.ádi.
The recordings have been arranged by the main speaker on each recording, which primarily consists of six recordings by Thomas Ukas recorded circa 1971 and three by Harry Ukas recorded circa 1990. These recordings were originally captured on open reels, then migrated to cassette by the donor (both reel and cassette are retained by the donor), and then migrated by CD by SHI. Each recording is approximately 50 minutes long, and a description for each recording is provided in the item by item list below. Much of the descriptive information provided below was written on the original cassettes by the donor.