19 Facts About Aleut


Aleut people speak Unangam Tunuu, the Aleut language, as well as English and Russian in the United States and Russia respectively.

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The Aleut suffered high fatalities in the 19th and early 20th centuries from Eurasian infectious diseases to which they had no immunity.

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In 1811, to obtain more of the commercially valuable otter pelts, a party of Aleut hunters traveled to the coastal island of San Nicolas, near the Alta California-Baja California border.

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The Aleut Restitution Act of 1988 was an attempt by Congress to compensate the survivors.

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Today, many Aleut continue to eat customary and locally sourced foods but buy processed foods from Outside, which is expensive in Alaska.

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Customary arts of the Aleut include weapon-making, building of baidarkas, weaving, figurines, clothing, carving, and mask making.

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Aleut women sewed finely stitched, waterproof parkas from seal gut and wove fine baskets from sea-lyme grass.

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Aleut arts are practiced and taught throughout the state of Alaska.

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Aleut carving, distinct in each region, has attracted traders for centuries, including early Europeans and other Alaska Natives.

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Aleut'storically, carving was a male art and leadership attribute whereas today it is done by both genders.

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Aleut carve walrus ivory for other uses, such as jewelry and sewing needles.

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Early Aleut women created baskets and woven mats of exceptional technical quality, using only their thumbnail, grown long and then sharpened, as a tool.

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Today, Aleut weavers continue to produce woven grass pieces of a remarkable cloth-like texture, works of modern art with roots in ancient tradition.

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One Aleut leader recognized by the State of Alaska for her work in teaching and reviving Aleut basketry was Anfesia Shapsnikoff.

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Tattoos and piercings of the Aleut people demonstrated accomplishments as well as their religious views.

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Aleut people developed in one of the harshest climates in the world, and learned to create and protect warmth.

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The Aleut resembles that of a Yup'ik kayak, but it is hydrodynamically sleeker and faster.

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Simple Aleut harpoon consisted of four main parts: the wooden shaft, the bone foreshaft, and the bonehead with barbs pointed backward.

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The Aleut developed a style of burials that were accommodated to local conditions, and honored the dead.

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