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Valuing traditional activities in the northern native economy : the case of Old Crow, Yukon Territory Murphy, Sheilagh C. 1986

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VALUING TRADITIONAL ACTIVITIES IN THE ISDRTHERN NATIVE ECONOMY: THE CASE OF OLD CROW, YUKON TERRITORY by SHEILAGH C . MURPHY H . B . A . , WILFRID LAURIER UNIVERSITY, 1983 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n the Department o f Geography We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming t o the r e q u i r e d s tandard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA March 1986 (t) S h e i l a g h C . Murphy, 1986 In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements fo r an advanced degree at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f r e e l y available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by h i s or her representatives. I t i s understood that copying or publication of t h i s thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of GEOGRAPHY The University of B r i t i s h Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 Date MARCH 1 4 , 1 9 8 6 i i ABSTRACT The purpose of the research is to develop a widely acceptable and more h o l i s t i c method for valuing tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s in a northern native community. It does this by extending contemporary valuation methods to include native categories and perceptions of natural resources, both past and present. The community of Old Crow, Yukon Territory is used as the f i e ld s i te because i t is a re lat ive ly stable community, closely linked to the land, and one for which h i s tor i ca l material is avai lable. Any assessment of a contemporary native community, i t s people, and their relationships to the land and i t s bounty would not be complete without an examination of their history. Thus, the thesis recounts the history of the Kutchin Indians of Old Crow. By reviewing past situations, traditions and cultural bel iefs , the present day place of the land and i t s resources in the l ives of the Old Crow people is revealed. Contemporary valuation methods are defined as those which emphasize valuing resources numerically using a specif ic type of quantitative information. The more h o l i s t i c method, on the other hand, includes the examination of the 'value'1 assigned tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s by the people themselves as exemplified through past and present situations. The ultimate goal of this work is to show that static quantitative analyses Note 1: For the purposes of this paper 'value' means that which is worthy or desirable of esteem for i t s own sake; thing or quality haying in tr ins i c worth. Conversely value means the worth of a good in money or other numerical terms at a certain point in time. must be balanced with research into the more social side of native ac t iv i t i e s i f their true value is to be found. The thesis shows that contemporary valuation methods continually underestimate the 'value' of production from the land because they are usually limited in time and scope, and f a i l to deal with the non-market 'values' the land and i ts bountry hold for native northerners. It is discovered that comparing data collected at different points in time is a very effective means of precipitat ing out those 'values' which influence native people in making choices about the pursuit of tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s in the north. Using this method the land and i t s resources as perceived by the Old Crow people are shown to s t i l l hold a paramount place in their day to day l i ve s . /As with other northern native groups, even though material opportunities and hunting strategies have changed, the people continue to value their tradit ional land and l i f e for a variety of reasons. While the thesis identif ies the various 'values' associated with productive ac t iv i t i e s in Old Crow, i t does not develop a scheme that quantifies or ranks the relat ive worth of these 'values'. It discusses the merit of the concept in the context of valuing ac t iv i t i e s in the tradit ional economy of the north, and concludes that much research is s t i l l required in this area. iv T A B L E OF CONTENTS Page CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION 1 THE STUDY: ITS PURPOSE AND ORGANIZATION 3 a) Purpose 3 b) Organization 4 GEOGRAPHICAL SETTING 6 a) Introduction 6 b) Physiography 8 c) The Kutchin People 12 METHOD 17 Data and Sample Size 19 CHAPTER 2 INTRODUCTION 20 TRADITIONAL LAND AND LIFE 20 a) Seasonal Movements 20 b) Hunting and Fishing 21 c) Travel, Shelter, Dress 24 d) Social Organization 25 CONTACT HISTORY 27 a) The Fur Trade 1784-1904 28 b) Missionaries, Whalers, Gold Seekers and Police: 1860-1912 31 - Missionaries 31 - Whalers and Gold Seekers 32 - The Police 35 c) Changes to the Kutchin Way of L i fe 35 - Hunting, Fishing and Trapping 36 - Material Goods 39 - Social Organization 40 THE SETTLEMENT OF OLD CROW 42 PRESENT DAY OLD CROW 43 CHAPTER 3 INTRODUCTION 50 1. Valuing Subsistence Production in the 50 Developing World 2. The Use of Standard Equivalents 53 3. Valuing Tradit ional Act iv i t i e s Using 56 Substitution Costs 4. Valuing Subsistence Production Using 73 Production Costs SUMMARY 76 CHAPTER 4 INTRODUCTION 78 Resource Use In Contemporary Old Crow 79 i) Tradit ional Act iv i t i e s in 80 Contemporary Old Crow V Page i i ) Value Assigned to Traditional 104 Act iv i t i e s by the Old Crow People i i i ) The Social Relations of Production 120 In Old Crow Valuation in the absence of a h i s tor i ca l 131 record 1. Comparing Act iv i t i e s of Different 131 Aged Informants 2. Patterns of Time Spent Engaging in 137 Subsistence Act iv i t i e s 3. Production Act iv i t i e s in Old Crow vs. 139 those in Ross River 4. Employed vs Unemployed Residents: Does 148 Income Influence Participation? 5. Other Suggestions 151 SUMMARY 152 CHAPTER 5' SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS 154 1. Contemporary Valuation Methods 155 2. New Hol i s t i c Method 157 3. Moving Beyond Identifying Social Values 159 CONCLUSION 162 REFERENCES 164 APPENDIX A OLD CROW QUESTIONNAIRE 173 APPENDIX B SUPPORTING TABLES 184 v i LIST OF TABLES Page 3 . 1 MUSKRAT HARVESTING A C T I V I T I E S IN 58 OLD CROW 1960-1983 3 . 2 PERCEIVED PROPORTION OF FOOD OBTAINED FROM 61 SUBSISTENCE A C T I V I T I E S , OLD CROW (1984) 3 . 3 AMOUNT OF COUNTRY FOOD IN THE D I E T OF OLD 62 CROW PEOPLE 1973 AND 1983 3 . 4 ESTIMATED VALUE OF ANNUAL MEAT HARVESTS 65 OLD CROW, 1983 3 . 5 ANNUAL INCOME DISTRIBUTION IN OLD CROW, 1983 68 3 . 6 COST OF SUBSTITUTION VERSUS THE COST OF 69 HUNTING AND FISHING FOR FOOD, OLD CROW, 1983 4 . 1 OLD CROW GAME RETURNS FOR 1963-1976, 1978, 1983 90 4 . 2 OLD CROW F I S H E R I E S 1967-73 , 1978, 1983 91 4 . 3 OLD CROW FUR RETURNS FOR MUSKRATS 1938-1984 93 4 . 4 MUSKRAT CAMP PRODUCTIVITY, OLD CROW, 1960-83 94 4 . 5 OLD CROW FUR RETURNS 1938-1973, 1974-1984 96 4 . 6 PRODUCTIVITY OF TRAPPING A C T I V I T I E S , OLD CROW 99 1960-1983 4 . 7 ' HOUSEHOLD BY T Y P E OF ECONOMIC A C T I V I T Y 105 (SOURCES OF TOTAL HSHLD INCOME) v i i Page 4.8 $ VALUE OF OLD CROW FUR RETURNS 1938-1973, 107 1974-1983 4.9 $ VALUE OF OLD CROW MUSKRAT RETURNS 1938-1983 109 4.10 $ VALUE FOR OLD CROW FOR RETURNS FOR SELECT 110 YEARS 4.11 ESTIMATED $ FOOD VALUE FOR GAME RETURNS IN 113 OLD CROW FOR SELECT YEARS 4.12 INCOME CALCULATIONS FOR OLD CROW, 1983 114 4.13 SUMMARY OF HUOT?ING/FISHING/TRAPPING COSTS 116 OLD CROW, 1983 4.14 TRADITIONAL SKILLS IN OLD CROW, 1973 AND 1984 124 4.15 HUNTING, TRAPPING AND FISHING ACTIVITIES IN 132 OLD CROW - 1983 4.16 PATTERNS OF TIME SPENT ON SUBSISTENCE ACTIVITIES 138 OLD CROW, 1983 4.17 TOTAL ESTIMATED VALUE OF THE DOMESTIC SECTOR OF 141 THE ECONOMY OLD CROW VS ROSS RIVER 4.18 ESTIMATED TOTAL INCOME - OLD CROW VS ROSS RIVER 142 4.19 EMPLOYMENT DATA FOR OLD CROW (1983) AND 145 ROSS RIVER (1982) 4.20 PARTICIPATION IN SUBSISTENCE ACTIVITIES AS A 149 FUNCTION OF HOUSEHOLD INCOME, OLD CROW, 1983 v i i i Page B - l FOOD WEIGHT VALUES USED TO OUXULATE OLD CROW COUNTRY FOOD HARVESTS 185 B-2 MEAT/FISH HARVEST DATA FOR OLD CROW 1973 AND 1983 186 B-3 SUMMARY OF HUNTING COSTS, OLD CROW, 1983 187 B-4 CPI INDEX 188 B-5 SUMMARY OF EMPLOYMENT DATA OLD CROW - 1983 189 i x LIST OF FIGURES Page 1 . 1 K U T C H I N T E R R I T O R Y I N T H E N O R T H E R N Y U K O N 7 1 . 2 T H E P H Y S I O G R A P H Y O F T H E N O R T H E R N Y U K O N 8 1 . 3 A T H A P A S K A N S I N N O R T H W E S T A M E R I C A 12 2 . 1 C A R I B O U M I G R A T I O N R O U T E S 22 2 . 2 CROW F L A T S , Y U K O N 3 8 2 . 3 O L D CROW, Y U K O N , 1 9 8 4 45 4 . 1 O L D CROW L A N D U S E , L O N G A G O 8 1 4 . 2 O L D CROW L A N D U S E , 1 9 6 0 8 2 4 . 3 O L D CROW L A N D U S E , 1 9 7 3 8 3 4 . 4 O L D CROW L A N D U S E , 1 9 7 8 8 5 4 . 5 O L D CROW L A N D U S E , 1 9 8 3 8 6 4 . 6 A C T I V I T I E S L O C A T E D N E A R O L D CROW 8 8 4 . 7 R O S S R I V E R A N D V I C I N I T Y , Y U K O N 1 4 4 X ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The completion of this thesis would not have been possible without the assistance, advice and support of the following people. F i r s t , I owe a large thank you to the people of Old Crow who welcomed me into the community and their homes during the f i e ld portion of the research. Without their co-operation the thesis would not have been possible at a l l . At the University of Br i t i sh Columbia I am indebted to Dr. John Stager whose northern experience and comments proved invaluable to both the f i e ld research and the f ina l written product. Thanks must also go to my reader, Dr. Alfred Siemens, whose suggestions added to the more qualitat ive portions of the thesis. I would also l ike to thank the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada and the Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies whose f inancial assistance allowed me to spend the four months in Old Crow and a year of f u l l time study at U.B.C. F ina l ly , a great deal of gratitude is owing to Nicole St-Denis who patiently typed and re-typed the numerous draft copies, and to my husband Gordon who remained extremely supportive of my work despite the long periods of separation. Sheilagh Murphy March, 1986 1 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION It cannot be denied that in the last 25 years there has been a diminishing interest in land-based activities by the majority of Native people in Canada's north. Faced with the reality that the commercial production of furs, hides and food can no longer afford them a living, at least with modern expectational standards, most native northerners have taken up permanent residence in settlements in order to take advantage of the wide range of services available there. Unlike other hunting societies^- however, the transformation from a hunting and trapping society to an urban one has not been accompanied by a total abandonment of the traditional way of l i f e . Rather, what has emerged in many groups is a dual allegiance to land and town (Wolforth, 1971:1). Some families have chosen careers in town, others have continued to hunt and trap, while s t i l l others shift between wage employment and land-based activities (Honigmann and Honnigmann, 1965:77). Regrettably, because only a small part of the local renewable resource harvest actually enters the market economy today, the degree to which native northerners s t i l l depend on the land and on country food has repeatedly been underestimated by those involved in northern development planning and policy making (Freeman, 1981; and Usher, 1978). The result has been an overwhelming focus on large-scale, non renewable resource Note 1: see for example, Murphy and Steward, 1965:77. 2 development and a neglect of the renewable resources central to the native domestic economy, especially in terms of their development potential (Wolfe, 1984, 1981 and 1979; Fei t , 1983 and 1979; Usher, 1982, 1976 and 1971; Lonner, 1981; Tanner, 1979; Nowak, 1977; Stager, 1974; and Van Stone, 1960). Consequently, members of the research community, and native people through their land claim submissions, are now ca l l ing for a more balanced approach to development in the Canadian north. More spec i f ica l ly , they are looking for pol ic ies which provide for the maintenance and growth of both the modern and tradit ional sectors of the northern economy. Unfortunately, a fundamental problem seems to be hindering the easy development of such po l i c i e s . To date, no generally agreed upon method of measuring either the value of production from the land, or i t s exchange values, has been found. Increasing resistance by native people and some southern Canadians to the existing methods of valuation suggests that they are imperfect or inadequate when applied to those tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s separate from the economy of the outside market place. In part icular , these methods f a i l to recognize that the resource needs of native people which arise out of tradit ion or custom are just as real as those that r ise from physical and economic want; and that such needs also have claim on management policy and f inancial investment (Roots, 1981:250). Tne solution seems to be the development of a method which w i l l account for the cu l tura l , nutr i t ional , psychological and p o l i t i c a l significance natural resources hold for the indigenous people; in addition to their economic importance. 3 THE STUDY: ITS PURPOSE AND ORGANIZATION a) Purpose The present study attempts to develop a widely acceptable and more h o l i s t i c method for valuing tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in a northern native community. Using the community of Old Crow, Yukon Terr i tory , the thesis develops a means of precipitat ing out those 'values' which influence the choices people make about tradi t ional pursuits by centering on understanding native categories and perceptions of natural resources, both past and present. This approach sharply contrasts the current practice of defining the value of renewable resources numerically because i t goes beyond merely analysing the quantifiable elements of native ac t iv i t i e s by employing methods aimed at understanding a groups's ethos. It does this by identifying: 1) those tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s a cul tural group has chosen to preserve while undergoing complex social transformations; 2) the value assigned these ac t iv i t i e s by the people themselves: economic, cu l tura l , h i s tor i ca l and so forth; and 3) the social relations of production^ operative in a society which cause the 'value' assigned an ac t iv i ty to fluctuate over time. Note 1: the socia l relations of production: the social organization of productivity and the values and beliefs which serve to perpetuate i t (Usher, 1981:57). 4 It w i l l be maintained throughout the thesis that one of the most important 'values' associated with tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s i s that their continued practice has provided the means by which northern native people have maintained their cultural identi ty while undergoing modernization. In the f ina l analysis, i t i s apparent that while material opportunities and hunting strategies have changed, the fundamental linkage - the relat ion between the people and the land - has remained the same (Kemp, 1971). Hence, i f policy makers concerned with the maintenance and growth of the tradi t ional sector of the northern economy, only focus on the more quantifiable elements, they w i l l miss what i s t ru ly 'valuable' about tradi t ional ac t i v i t i e s . b) Organization Central to this thesis are two separate tasks. The f i r s t involves the examination and cri t ique of the prevalent methods currently used to value tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in subsistence-based economies. The objective here i s to show how the use of such methods in the f i e l d can generate some interesting information, but continually f a i l to f ind a 'value* t ru ly representative of the importance of the tradi t ional sector to the native people. The second task i s to outline a more h o l i s t i c means of identifying the 'values' which influence people's ac t iv i t i e s in Old Crow. While employing some of the techniques examined in task one, the objective here i s to use data collected on the community in 5 1963, 1973 and 1984 to show how tracking attitudes and perceptions, as well as a group's ac t iv i t i e s , through time, can lead to a better evaluation of land-based renewable resources. In addition, other methods w i l l be outlined, such as comparing the responses of different aged informants, in an attempt to show how this valuation approach can s t i l l be operationalized in cases where a re l iable or comprehensive h i s t o r i c a l record is not readily available. While the thesis w i l l not develop a scheme that quantifies or determines the relat ive significance of the 'values' identif ied, i t does discuss whether such a scheme has merit in the overal l question of valuing the resources used by native people. Naturally, any assessment of a contemporary native community, i t s people, and their relationships to the land and i t s bounty, would not be complete without an examination of their history. It is only be reviewing past situations, traditions and cultural bel iefs that one can arrive at some understanding of what has happened to social organization and the tradit ional way of l i f e . Hence, the thesis includes a chapter on the history of the Old Crow people from pre-contact times to present day. In doing so, i t w i l l show that the land and i t s resources s t i l l maintain a paramount place in the l ives of the Old Crow people. 6 GEOGRAPHICAL SETTING a) Introduction The v i l lage of Old Crow is situated on the Porcupine River, one mile west of i t s junction with the Old Crow River (Old Crow Y . T . : 67°35 'N , 139°45'W). It is the most northerly settlement in the Yukon, lying approximately 200 kilometers north of the Arct ic c i r c l e , and is accessible by either plane or boat. The people of Old Crow are Loucheux Indians of the Vunta (Crow River) and Tukkuth (Upper Porcupine River) Kutchin tribes; a sub group of the Northern Athapaskan Indians (Welsh, 1970:20). According to local legend, the v i l lage derives i t s name from the nearby r iver ; named after a man called Old Crow who had a f ish camp near the mouth of the Crow River (Ibid:24). The 1983 population was approximately 236 people, of which 169 were Indian, 48 were Metis and 19 were white. There are f i f t y to one hundred Old Crow people residing outside the community on either a temporary or permanent basis . Tradit ional ly , the Vunta and Tukkuth Kutchin exploited a vast terr i tory in the northern part of the Yukon Territory, including the re lat ive ly isolated Upper Porcupine drainage (Figure 1.1). Although occupancy has changed over time, many of the residents of Old Crow s t i l l perceive most of this vast land area col lect ive ly theirs (see Njoot l i , 1983; or McSkimming, 1975). Hence, in terms of i n i t i a l description, the report w i l l concern i t s e l f with the tradit ional habitat of the Old Crow people. Figure 1.1 8 Physiography(Figure 1.2) The study area lies at the northern end of the Cordilleran region's interior system (Balikci, 1963:3). In the flatter, central regions of this land (the Old Crow Plain and the Porcupine Plateau) large rivers, streams and numerous lakes abound. Conversely, the periphery is comprised of largely mountainous terrain. In the north the area is separated from the Arctic Ocean by the British and Barns Mountains, while access to the Mackenzie Delta and the Northwest Territories to the east is made difficult by the Richardson Mountains. In more recent times, the area's western limit has been the Alaskan border (141°W), while the southern margin has always been the Ogilvie Mountains; home of the headwaters of the Porcupine River. In the vicinity of Old Crow itself, lies the Old Crow Range which separates the Old Crow Plain from the Porcupine River Valley. In the flat, isolated country directly south of the community stands Lone Mountain, an important land mark, especially for the winter traveller (Balikci, 1963:3). The Porcupine River is the major water feature of the area, crossing the entire region in generally a westward direction and draining the lesser streams of the Porcupine Plateau before flowing into the Yukon River in Alaska (Ibid). The river has always played an important role in the lives of the Old Crow people. It is a highway for summer and winter movement, a major source of country food (fish), and central to native,hunting and trapping strategies (Stager, 1974:14). 9 Figure 1.2 10 A very important tributary of the Porcupine River is the Old Crow River which drains the Old Crow Plain and connects the Porcupine with Crow Flats; a lake strewn plateau 80km north of the community is home to a large muskrat population which is harvested in the spring by the Old Crow people. Both the Porcupine and Old Crow Rivers have incised deep, rather broad valleys into the b a s i n - f i l l sediments (Naysmith, 1971:20). The flood plains and terraces bordering these rivers have well developed meander-scar patterns, with stands of spruce on elevated ridges, and heavy willow growth in the depressions (Ibid:20). The surface areas of the f latter plateaus the two rivers drain are characterized by a mosaic of lakes. The elevated areas which exist between these lakes have a thick cover of sphagnum peat, with dwarf birch and scattered stunted spruce. Of the numerous f la t , marshy areas in the region, three are central to the Old Crow people's seasonal round: 1) The Flats , mentioned previously; 2) another area immediately south of the community; and 3) the northern portion of the Eagle Plain (see Figure 1.2). The Flats is the most important because i t is r i ch in muskrats and waterfowl, and is close to town. The other two areas have become favoured winter and spring trapping areas for many residents over the years. Going further, in the lower lying areas of these f lat marshy areas one finds a polygonal network of ridges which suggests a moderate to high content of segregated ice in the form of ice wedges and ground ice (McSkimming, 1975:10). This is not surprising when 11 one considers that Old Crow l ies just at the boundary between the discontinuous and continuous permafrost zone. Naysmith (1971) and Bal ikc i (1963) both have noted that permafrost is usually within .61 meters of the ground surface throughout the area. F ina l ly , the area experiences a continental sub-arctic regime due to the high mountain barriers which protect i t from moist Pacif ic a i r (Stager, 1974:15). Winters are generally long (October-April/May), with temperatures averaging - 3 3 . 7 ° C (YTG, 1984d). Short, warm spells in the high 20's (°C) often occur each summer, which generally lasts from late June to mid August. Total precipitat ion of the region averages 212mm with just over hal f (108mm) fa l l ing as rain between late May and early October (Ibid). Snow can occur at any time but, usually begins in September and ends in May (Stager, 1974:16). Last ly , lying north of the Arct ic c i r c l e , Old Crow experiences long periods of both daylight and darkness. Late May to mid August is the typical season for the former, while November to January is the common time frame for the la t ter . 12 c) The Kutchin People The people of Old Crow are decendents of a distinctive group of Northern Athapaskans known as Kutchin, or "dwellers"1 (Figure 1.3). McSkimming notes that many modern studies have reconstructed the traditional ethnography of the Kutchin Indians (1975:4). The f i r s t by Osgood (1936) dealt largely with the territory (1936A) and synonomy (1934) of the eight "tribes" which comprised the "true Kutchin" (Slobodin, 1976,532; and Welsh, 1970:20). Although later research on the specific bands (Slobodin:1960 and 1962 among the Tatlit for example) contradicted some of Osgood's early findings,2 this ethnographical work on the Kutchin remains the basic and most important modern monograph on this people (Slobodin, 1976:532). Note 1: the word Kutchin translates as dwellers, and when coupled with a geographical term, i t designated a particular regional band (9 in total), eg: Vunta Kutchin meant "dwellers of the lakes" (Welsh, 1970:20). 2: McSkimming (1975:4) notes that Slobodin (1960 and 1962) and Leechman (1954) found numerous examples of inter-tribal commerce and warfare among the Tatlit and Vunta Kutchin, which contradicted Osgood's (1936A and 1934) assertion that each tribe lived in relative isolation in one section of country. Going further, Balikci (1963) said that the social clan system described by Osgood was not necessarily true among the Vunta Kutchin, while McKennan (1965) and Welsh (1970) disagreed that summer camps were located primarily for fishing. 13 Figure 1.3 ATHAPASKANS IN NORTHWEST AMERICA G u l f of A l a s k a 14 Of great aid to both Osgood and later researchers have been the recorded observations of the early explorers, Mackenzie (1801), and Franklin (1828), and the journal by Murray (1847-1848) on the western Kutchin before almost any acculturation (Slobodin, 1976:532). Observations by early Hudson's Bay Company post managers (Hardisty, 1872; and Jones, 1872), and missionaries (eg. Kirkby, 1865), as well as Petitot 's extensive writings on folklore and language (1876-1877), have also proved extremely valuable in examinations of Kutchin kinship and social organization (Slobodin, 1976; and McSkimming, 1975). M l the modern ethnographical works agree that the Kutchin people existed in groups cal led "tribes" (McKennan, 1965; and Osgood, 1936A and 1936), "communities" (Slobodin, 1962), and "bands" (Ibid). In 1970, Welsh added the term "regional band" after Helm's work (1964) among the Arct ic Drainage Athapaskans where individual bands were linked to other small hunting groups by kinship and marriages, and a shared orientation to an extensive resource hinterland (Welsh, 1970:20). This term seems appropriate when one considers that the Kutchin did not form a t r i b a l entity in a social or p o l i t i c a l sense, and that only rarely did one or two of the individual regional bands come together for social occasions such as feasts (Ibid). 15 The main body of l i terature on the Kutchin has centred on acculturation and socia l organization. Leechman (1954) concentrated on the material changes to contemporary Vunta Kutchin society, while Slobodin (1962), Ba l ikc i (1963), and McKennan (1965) a l l examined changes in the social organization of the T a t l i t (Peel River) , Vunta (Crow River) , and Natsit (Chandalar River) Kutchin respectively. Addit ional ly , Slobodin has examined: Eastern Kutchin warfare (1960); the effect of the Klondike Gold Rush on the Peel River Kutchin (1963); and Kutchin folklore (1976) and bel ief systems (1970). Work by Krech in the 1970's dealt largely with Kutchin involvement in the fur trade (1976), the aboriginal population of the Kutchin (1978), and interethnic relations (1979). F i n a l l y , Welsh's study of Old Crow in 1970 dealt with how changes in social organization were manifesting themselves i n the settlement patterns of the cxxtitiunity. Research has also been carried out in the f ie lds of pre-history migration (Hal l , 1969), archaeology (Irving, 1968), and paleontology (Harington, 1971). Hal l contended that evidence on the late pre-history of Kutchin placed them i n the mountainous and forested regions of Alaska and the Yukon, and not along the r iver valleys known to them h i s t o r i c a l l y (1969:327). Conversely, Irving's work uncovered Kutchin campsites along the riverbanks of the Porcupine, while Harington and Irving's (1967) controversial find of a caribou forelong bone shaped into a hide scraper in Crow F la t s , dated human occupation of the lake areas of the northern Yukon as early as 16 25,000 years B.P. (the beginning of the 10,000 year period when the Bering land bridge was repeatedly exposed). Because the Kutchin of pre-contact times were largely a nomadic hunting and f ishing people, occupying an area r i ch in resources,habitation of both upland and r iver sites seems ent ire ly possible. A th ird body of l i terature has dealt with the contemporary socio-economic conditions in Old Crow; namely: the present day social effects of modernization (Marshall, 1970; B a l i k c i , 1968; and Honigmann, 1965); the future of the tradi t ional and wage sectors of the Old Crow economy (Bissett and Meldrum, 1973; and Naysmith, 1971); and the potential effects of o i l and gas development in the northern Yukon (Berger, 1977; and Stager, 1974). On a s l ight ly different note was the 1975 work of Robert McSkimming, which attempted to outline the Old Crow people's a f f in i ty to their environment by examining the relationship between the physical land-use around Old Crow, and the community's spatial image of i t s t err i tory . A l l of these lat ter studies have included an examination of the role of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in 'modern day Old Crow, and by implication, harvest data. It i s obvious that an extensive body of h i s tor i ca l and contemporary l i terature i s available on Old Crow. This data i s invaluable to the current study because i t allows for a comprehensive examination of not only the past and current social 17 organization of the community, including native attitudes and bel iefs , but the place that subsistence production has held in the l ives of the people through time. M E T H O D In order to obtain data relevant to determining the value of northern renewable resources, four approaches were used: 1) examining the existing l i terature on the research topic and interviewing persons engaged in similar research; 2) engaging in participant observation throughout the study period; 3) administering a comprehensive questionnaire on community l i f e (/Appendix A); and 4) conducting ethnographic interviews to complement the questionnaire. The f i r s t approach provided valuable background material and introduced a variety of methods and concepts previously not considered. These were tr ied in the f i e l d so that their advantages and limitations could be identi f ied. The remaining three approaches were carried out in the f i e l d . Participant observation was an ongoing ac t iv i ty throughout the f i e ld season, while the latter two ac t iv i t i e s were conducted in the f inal month and a ha l f . This time period was chosen because i t coincided with the f a l l hunting and trapping season. The thoughts and 18 feelings of the Old Crow people concerning the value of natural resources are strong during this season for this is when they tend to feel closest to the land and content with their way of l i f e . More spec i f ica l ly , the questionnaire was designed to e l i c i t facts and the quantifiable elements of the people's economic ac t iv i t i e s and general l i f e rhythm in Old Crow, both past and present. The questionnaire format was similar to the one used by Dr. J . K . Stager in Old Crow in the early 1970's. It was decided to use a similar questionnaire because i t was thought that the best means of determining the "value" of tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s would be to see how much ac t iv i t i e s and attitudes in Old Crow had changed over time. Ethnographic interviews were used to complement the questionnaire. The nature of the data required dictated the need for conducting the questionnaire within the larger framework of an ethnographic interview. This approach allowed for f l e x i b i l i t y when pursuing a l ine of questioning, and became invaluable when interviewing individuals who did not easi ly understand the questions. A l l interview results were validated by cross-checking information with either another member of the community, or existing sources of published data. 19 Data and Sample Size The interview population was chosen on the basis of age and place of residence. At least one adult member from each occupied household was approached, as well as other family members. The age of 20 was used as the lower boundary for interviews because anyone younger was usually in school for eight months of the year and dependent on their parents. The constant inflow and outflow of community members throughout the summer months meant that not everyone of interview age could be questionned. Quota sampling for the three age groups established was used to guarantee that a l l the diverse elements within the population were represented. Seventy-five people (62% of the adult population) were interviewed, representing f i f ty-four of the seventy households in Old Crow. Many of the households not interviewed were occupied by elders and others who were unable to act ively participate in the tradit ional sector. Fortunately, because of the share ethic within the community, information on the amount of country food u t i l i z ed by these individuals, and their economic ac t iv i t i e s , was easi ly obtained through interviews with those who provided for them. Informants were never asked d irect ly to "value" the tradit ional way of l i f e . Rather, the importance of a l i f e on the land was determined indirect ly by measuring changes in : the people's economic ac t iv i t i e s ; the intensity of land-use (temporally and spat ia l ly ) ; and attitudes toward such things as wage employment, community social organization, and l i f e outside the community. 20 CHAPTER 2 TJTCTODUCTION Prior to the contact the Kutchin subsistence pattern was based on the seasonal and regional acquisition of f i sh and game over a large t err i tory r ich in these resources. The coming of the white man altered annual subsistence ac t iv i t i e s and gradually led to the establishment of several permanent settlements l ike Old Crow. The resulting increased dependence on white goods, and the white economy, brought tremendous changes to the tradi t ional way of l i f e . However, unlike other northern communities the Kutchin of Old Crow have continued to u t i l i z e most of the t err i tory and resources known to them trad i t iona l ly . TRADITIONAL LAND AND LIFE a) Seasonal Movements During tradi t ional times the seasons conditioned the l ives of the Kutchin. The small nomadic family groups moved throughout their lands in order to take advantage of the spring and f a l l migration of the caribou. Summers were passed at f i sh camps along the riverbanks, while the winter months were spent in the h i l l s following the caribou and capturing other game l ike moose or rabbit . Despite the re lat ive abundance of country food, the quest for foodstuffs was often uncertain or made d i f f i c u l t by harsh weather, disease, or altered migration patterns (McSkimming, 1975:27). 21 b) Hunting and Fishing The caribou herds of the northern Yukon and Alaska have always been the mainstay of the Kutchin people. These animals spend the winter months dispersed throughout the slopes of the Ogilvie and Richardson Mountains (Figure 2.1). In spring, they move northward to their staging grounds along the Yukon Coastal Plain before proceeding eastward to their summer ranges in Alaska. In late summer the route is reversed as the herd, with new young, head south to winter in the forests once again (Stager, 1974:22). Depending upon the terrain, the season or the grouping of the caribou, the Kutchin pursued the animals either individually or as a small group. In the spring the Kutchin would congregate in local bands along major r iver arteries to await spring breakup and the annual northern migration of the caribou (McSkimming, 1975:29). Leechman (1954:6) noted that the caribou were usually speared from canoes as they crossed various r ivers at tradit ional crossing points. This ac t iv i ty , is s t i l l practiced today by the people of Old Crow, although' guns have replaced spears. The major hunt for caribou occurred in the f a l l when the stockpiling of meat was a p r i o r i t y . The Kutchin would gather together in larger groups in- the foothi l l s of the various mountain ranges to herd the caribou into large surrounds or corrals constructed among the trees. Everyone participated and immediately after the group hunt the many 23 animals taken were butchered or cached by drying or freezing (McSkimming, 1975:30). Participants in each surround would then form a large "meat camp" which stayed together unt i l the game was depleted (mid winter). The people then dispersed to various points in the caribou wintering grounds u n t i l the spring hunt when the cycle would repeat i t s e l f once again. For the Vunta Kutchin the tradit ional caribou surrounds were located along the h i l l s immediately north of Crow Fla t s . The pr inc ipal surround was situated near the F i r t h River and was used as late as 1900 (Bal ikci , 1963:15). Moose, mountain sheep, rabbits and other small mammals were usually captured by the individual hunter at different times during the year depending on need and a v a i l a b i l i t y . For the Vunta Kutchin, moose and mountain sheep were the second and third most important food sources after caribou (Ibid:17). Moose hunting was most f r u i t f u l in the summer when either snares or ambush were used around the lakes favoured by them. Great s k i l l and endurance were always required in order for the hunt to be successful (Ibid). Conversely, mountain sheep were hunted during a l l seasons. A bow and arrow or snares tied securely to boulders were the favoured methods here. F ina l ly , winter ptarmigan, rabbits, porcupine, beaver and other small mammals were primarily snared or speared near the camp throughout the year. A l l of these species are s t i l l eaten by the Kutchin in Old Crow today. 24 Fishing was the central simmer ac t iv i ty for most Kutchin families . After the spring caribou hunt, people would establish f ish camps along the various r ivers . The V-shaped weirs of stakes and willow poles that were bu i l t across the smaller tributary streams of the Porcupine, were used to capture salmon, whitefish, jackfish and suckers (McSkimming, 1975:32 and Bakikci , 1963:18). With many groups gathered along the riverbanks, summer was also used as a time for inter t r i b a l trade and ceremonies. c) Travel , Shelter, Dress During tradi t ional times transport in the summer consisted of canoes which were poled or tracked (Slobodin, 1962:21). The Vunta Kutchin re l i ed mostly on the birch bark canoe which was modelled after the Eskimo umiak, f l a t bottomed with almost straight sides. The lack of birch bark in Crow Flats and along the northern Porcupine Paver however, usually meant that the Vunta Kutchin obtained their canoes from other groups i n the Yukon Flats area (Bal ikc i , 1963:20; and Leechman, 1954:26). When these were not available, the Vunta Kutchin covered their canoes with moose hide. Snowshoes, sleds and dog packs were used for land travel (Bal ikc i , 1963:21). Two types of snowshoes were employed. A large shoe was used for hunting, while smaller shoes were used for packing down a t r a i l (Ibid). Sleds were usually pulled by the women and were small and narrow (McSkirtiriing, 1975:33). The low carrying capacity of the sleds meant that dog packs were employed as well as human packs (Bal ikc i , 1963:21). 25 The dwellings of the Kutchin were quite or ig ina l . The almost universal domes sweat house found throughout the upper ha l f of North America was enlarged by the Kutchin, and an opening was lef t in the roof for a smoke hole. McKennan (1965) and Osgood (1936) both mention several variations of this house in tradit ional time; skin covered, moss covered and some with lean tos. The material used depended on camp location and time of year. In the winter for instance, added insulation was provided by covering the outside wall with snow and placing f i r boughs on the floor (Jenness, 1932:402). During the summer, most Kutchin bands used a tent of caribou because of i t s lightness and semi-permanence. The tradit ional dress of the Kutchin, l ike their tools and boats, reflected Eskimo influence. Clothes were made from finely tanned white caribou skin or fur depending on the season. Both sexes wore a p u l l over sh ir t that was short waisted and had long t a i l s before and behind (Slobodin, 1976 and Jenness, 1932). Trousers and footware of the same material were connected in one piece with moose skin forming the soles. In the winter men wore a fur cap instead of a hood and those of higher ranking wore marten coats decorated with porcupine q u i l l s instead of skin fringes (Bal ikci , 1963:21). Today marten and wolverine are the furs most prized for trimming winter parkas. d) Social Organization The social organization of the Kutchin in tradit ional times was rather unusual in that i t adopted a system of matri l ineal clans, uncommon among the eastern Athapaskans (Slobodin, 1976:523). Jenness (1932:402) 26 noted that this phenomenon was "obviously connected with the system present along the Pacif ic Coast". Two exogamous matril ineal clans existed across a l l Kutchin groups, termed Crow and Wolf. Because exogamy was not re l ig iously observed a third category represented by a gu l l was created to c lass i fy the children of endogamous marriages. This clan was primarily used for marriage regulation and ceremonies with other groups although, Bal ikc i noted (1963:27) that among the Vunta the system also provided the social framework for the exercise of chieftanship. A second cross-cutting type of status relationship was wealth ranking. Although the range of variation in material possessions among households was not great, some households l ived in considerable comfort. Sharp dis t inct ion was made between those c lass i f ied as wealthy and those regarded as poor (Slobodin, 1976:524). A th ird status relationship was age-grading. The periods of youth and old age were the most c learly distinguishable because they involved socia l and physical segregation from the band. G i r l s at menarche were sequested from the group while boys entering puberty l ived away from the family lodge unt i l marriage. Elders also l ived away from the main house, but were respected and remained in contact with the local group (Slobodin, 1976:525). There were several categories of chiefs among the Kutchin. Each t r i b a l unit had a chief from the wealthy class . This man had both organizational a b i l i t i e s and other superior qualit ies and held directive 27 powers in the ac t iv i t i e s of the group (Bal ikci , 1963:26). In addition to the t r i b a l chief were four other classes of chiefs: economic chiefs, who were wealthy individual owners of a caribou corrals or f ish traps, war chiefs; clan chiefs, who were concerned with the clan social organization; and shamans, who led the sp ir i tua l ac t iv i t i e s of the group and who were often more powerful than any of the other chiefs (McSkimming, 1975:34; and Ba l ikc i , 1963:27). F ina l ly , in terms of ceremonies, there were only a few times when the Kutchin would gather together to celebrate as a group larger than the local band: in spring after the caribou hunt; at a memorial feast to mark a b i r th ; and at either the end of a g i r l ' s manarche or a boy's f i r s t k i l l . Much eating, v i s i t i n g , and dancing characterized the f e s t i v i t i e s . At other times, in-gathering occurred regionally among the different local bands for the purpose of hunting, or building a corral or f ishtrap. CONTACT HISTORY The time during which the Kutchin of the northern Yukon were seeing their f i r s t foreigners, the contact period, lasted about 100 years. It began through trade with the Russians along the south coast of Alaska and ended with the establishment of a fur trading post at New Ramparts in 1904. During this time fur traders, missionaries, whalers, gold seekers and police a l l acted as agents of change. Through their ac t iv i t i e s they introduced a way of l i f e that was more sedentary and which increasingly bound the people to the outside world. 28 a) The Fur Trade 1784-1904 The fur trader had the most profound influence on the Kutchin tradit ional way of l i f e (McSkimming, 1975:35). The f i r s t imported item, the iron spear, was of Russian or ig in and came from Alaska. Both the Russians and Americans had penetrated the south coast of Alaska by the 1700's, and through Indian middlemen their goods diffused to inland bands l ike the Vunta Kutchin (McClellan, 1964:5). This arrangement persisted unt i l the a r r i v a l of permanent European trading posts in the Mackenzie Region in the mid 1800's. Up u n t i l this time, the native middlemen ensured their monopolistic position by establishing blockades which prevented the advancement of permanent Russian trade posts eastward into native inland terr i tor ies (Ibid). The fur trade f i r s t penetrated the northern Mackenzie region in the late 1700's with the h i s tor i c journey of Alexander Mackenzie in 1789. In the beginning the fur trade, as elsewhere, was entirely dependent on native middlemen to access and gain control of'the more remote areas. Even after the establishment of a post at Fort Good Hope in 1804, middlemen continued to dominate trade primarily because the post was too far from most tradit ional hunting grounds (Wolforth, 1971:18). In fact, for the more peripheral groups l ike the Vunta Kutchin, trade continued to focus to the west with the Russians in Alaska (Ibid). In an attempt to tap the northern lands and divert the Russian trade, the Hudson's Bay Company b u i l t the Peel River Post, later Fort 29 McPherson, in 1840 (Stager, 1974:28). McSkimming (1975) noted that the fort was unsuccessful at f i r s t because i t had been located north of the Kutchin customary hunting and fishing grounds, and south of the areas used by Eskimos: dangerous neutral terr i tory . /Additionally, the fort was d i f f i c u l t to resupply and hence, usually short of food and other tradable goods (Wolforth, 1971:19). Only the Kutchin of the Mackenzie Flats , and a few Kutchin from the Porcupine River frequented the fort on a regular basis . The relat ive lack of success during the early years of the Peel River Post encouraged the Hudson's Bay Company to try and establish a chain of sa te l l i t e forts closer to the sources of fur and meat. In 1843 John Be l l set out to find a route across the mountains into the Yukon and beyond. By 1845 Be l l had established a portage route from the Peel River Post to the Be l l River and had opened up a second fort , La Pierre House. This was the f i r s t northern fort that could be resupplied during the winter as well as the summer (Wolforth, 1971:19). In 1846, Bel l continued his portage to intercept the Yukon drainage at the junction of the Yukon and Porcupine Rivers (Stager, 1962). This resulted in the setting up of a third fort, F t . Yukon, and the f i r s t d irect European contact in the terr i tory of the Vunta Kutchin. For the f i r s t time since the establishment of the fur trade in the north, the monopolistic posit ion of the native middlemen was broken. The local Indian population now had two trading posts that were accessible year round. 30 The trade divide between Fort Yukon and the Peel River Post was midway along the Porcupine (Stager, 1874:29). The Kutchin of Crow Flats (Vunta) and the Chandalar River (Natsit) went to Fort Yukon, while the Peel River ( T a t l i t ) , Upper Porcupine (Takkuth) and Mackenzie Flats (Nakotcho) Kutchin continued to frequent the Peel River Post - Fort McPherson. La Pierre House was re la t ive ly inactive as a for t . Instead, i t was used as a transshipment point for goods trave l l ing between the other two northern forts (Bal ikc i , 1963:35). When the United States purchased Alaska in 1867, the Hudson's Bay Company moved i t s F t . Yukon post some 200 miles upriver to Howling Dog and then to Old Ramparts in 1869 (Stager, 1974:29). When the international boundary was surveyed the post moved once more to New Ramparts on the Canadian side (Bal ikci , 1963:35). These moves however did not improve trade for the Hudson's Bay Company. As in the early years of the Peel River Post, the d i f f i c u l t i e s of supplying as well as shipping out furs from the western Yukon were immense (Wolforth, 1971:21). Muskrat and other more valuable furs were refused at Fort Yukon, which had an enormous effect on trade. These factors, coupled by the competitive Russian trade to the west and the presence of wintering whalers near Herschel Island to the north, led to the withdrawal of the Hudson's Bay Company from the northern Yukon in 1893 (Ibid). Ten years passed before another fur trading post was established i n the area. Dan Cadzow, a private trader, opened a store at Rampart House i n 1904 (Harington, 1961:5). 31 b) Missionaries, Whalers, Gold Seekers and Police; 1860-1912 As in the other parts of Canada, the fur traders opened the way for other agents of change, particularly missionaries of the Anglican and Roman Catholic faiths (Wolforth, 1971:31). Missionaries brought cultural change to the area as well as easing relations between Indian and Inuit. Whalers and gold seekers diverted Native attention away from the fur trade and created a more complex set of needs, while the RCMP represented the arrival of the Canadian Government in the north. Missionaries Missionary activity began in 1860 and depended heavily on the transportation networks and posts of the fur traders (McSkimming, 1975:41). While the traders recognized the potential for inter tribal peace brought by the missionaries, the two groups barely tolerated each other. Missionaries accused the traders of exploiting human beings, while the traders regarded the missionaries as a distraction from trapping (Ibid). Anglican interest in the northern Mackenzie region began in 1857 and in 1860 both Anglican and Catholic missionaries arrived at Ft. McPherson. Gradually however, the Anglicans came to dominate the region and by the end of the 1860's the Catholics had abandoned the area. Perhaps one of the relative-strengths of the Anglican Church was the personality of Archdeacon Robert McDonald, whose missionary activity out 32 of F t . McPherson and across to F t . Yukon acted as a unifying force for those Kutchin bands segregated by fur trading ac t iv i t i e s . McDonald, part Cree and married to a Peel River woman, enhanced his influence by becoming fluent i n the Tukkuth and T a t l i t Loucheux dialects , and successfully guiding several Kutchin leaders to become catechists (McSkinming, 1975:42). The presence of Anglican missions at the various trading posts furthered the processes of cultural convergence started by the fur trade (Wolforth, 1971:31). The introduction of Christ ian feast days increased the number of t r ips made by most Kutchin families to the local trading post. This not only angered fur traders, but served to disrupt the native seasonal round even more. Secondly, the old patterns of leadership and social cohesion were gradually replaced as the missionaries began assuming the role previously held by Shamens (Ibid). F i n a l l y , the various r i tua l s associated with Christ ianity were thought to be a source of power. This increased the Kutchin acceptance of Chris t iani ty and led to the establishment of permanent mission schools at the various trading posts. This move only served to further reinforce the gradual development of these sites into permanently settled communities (Welsh, 1970:24). Whalers and Gold Seekers Late in the nineteenth Century, two developments occurred which brought radical cul tural change to the Kutchin of the northern Yukon. 33 The appearance of whaling ships in the late 1880's attracted both Indian and Eskimo to the Arc t i c coast. Meat, driftwood and furs were exchanged for wages. The a v a i l a b i l i t y of a wider range of goods at lower prices was the added incentive many Kutchin people needed to draw them away from the fur trade. The Vunta and Natsit traded with the whalers at Herschel and Barter Islands using established routes along the F i r t h and Blow Rivers (McSkiimung, 1975:43). Because this trade took place primarily i n the winter months, the number of furs being traded by the Kutchin in the summer at F t . Yukon and La Pierre House decreased dramatically. This reduction, plus the resupply problems to the two northern posts, forced the Hudson's Bay Company to withdraw from i t s Yukon operations in the 1890's. Consequently the Vunta Kutchin were l e f t with no other choice but to trade with the whalers, head south to Dawson City and the gold rush, or make the long, hard journey to F t . McPherson (Ibid). Fortunately, for the Hudson's Bay Company and others involved in the fur trade, the 1906 f a l l in the price of baleen meant a resurgence of the fur trade in the northern Yukon and Mackenzie area. For Dan Cadzow, the opening of his store at New Ramparts i n 1904 could not have been better timed. In 1918 business would get even better with the r i se i n the price and muskrat and the subsequent increase in the number of Indians part ic ipat ing in the fur trade. The fur industry would once again r i se to the significant posit ion i t had held pr ior to 1890 (Slobodin, 1963:29). 34 For those Kutchin not involved in whaling, the Klondike gold rush of 1898-99 provided a second distract ion away from the established fur trade. The Peel River, Rat River and Black River Kutchin learned of the gold rush from white fortune hunters passing through their t err i tory en route to Dawson City (Slobodin, 1962:30). Gradually many members of these bands became guides, accompanying groups of white fortune seekers to the Klondike gold. Although the gold rush was short l i ved , i t dramatically affected many of the Kutchin who had moved to Dawson C i t y . Slobodin (1963) made mention of the "Dawson Boys" who emerged during the gold rush period. These were predominantly Peel River Kutchin who had picked up urban attributes and sophistication, as well as innovative technology. Upon a r r i v a l back home in the early 1900's, the Peel society became more closely identif ied with the inst i tut ions of F t . McPherson and i t s fur trade ac t iv i ty (Slobodin, 1962:35). It i s l i k e l y that s imilar changes occurred among the other bands, especially the Vunta Kutchin who actively participated in both the whaling period and the gold rush. By 1912, the fur trade had absorbed those who had been occupied by whaling and the gold rush. Complex needs had been created over the previous twenty years and most northern natives had become irrevocably bound to the fur trade. The next twenty years would see the development of a highly ef f ic ient and complex hunting and trapping economy where most participants were interested in trade and/or settlement l i f e (Wolforth, 1971:43). 35 The Police Both the gold rush and the whaling boom resulted i n the appearance of yet another ins t i tut ion - the Royal Northwest Mounted Pol ice . In the Yukon the major concern was to maintain sovereignty and prevent lawlessness from spreading into the Canadian terr i tory from Alaska. The f i r s t Mountie arrived at Forty Mile in 1894 (Stager, 1974:32). By the time the gold rush started, several members of the force were in place i n the Yukon including New Ramparts. At the end of the whaling and gold rush periods the police remained as a sign of sovereignty and government involvement in the area (Wolforth, 1971:40). Although the police were acoompanied by an administrative structure headed by an appointed Commissioner and counci l , government involvement i n development, and economic and social processes remained insubstantial for many years. For the most part , ac t i v i t i e s operated as they had previously, with the added feature that loca l police frequently contributed towards the welfare of the native peoples (Ibid:41). c) Changes to the Kutchin Way of L i f e The introduction of white goods, white inst i tut ions and white technology had a profound effect on the Kutchin way of l i f e (Welsh, 1970:23).' However, even though there were many changes, the Kutchin, unlike other groups, continued to occupy and exploit most of the t err i tory known to them tradi t iona l ly after years of contact. The lack 36 of both concentrated settlements and white men during the contact period seemed to act as a safeguard against rapid cul tural change, and the complete breakdown of the tradi t ional way of l i f e . Hunting, Fishing and Trapping Prior to the 1820's trade with the Kutchin of the northern Yukon was infrequent. The lack of permanence of anyone post near tradi t ional hunting grounds, combined with the monopolistic control of the Indian middlemen in the region, meant white contact with native groups was irregular and unpredictable (J. Helm, 1976:291). Addit ional ly , there was the r e a l i t y that the goods being offered in trade were either not useful, or needed by the Kutchin people. Once the Hudson's Bay Posts in the Mackenzie Delta and northern Yukon were established however, the fur trade took a stronger hold and Kutchin ac t iv i t i e s became increasingly channelled. Trapping was best done by small family groups over a wider t e r r i t o r y . Hence, dispersal became the rule for most of the year with emphasis on the nuclear family. Meat and f i sh camps disappeared, and communal in-gathering occurred at the trading post during the summer and at Christmas. Camps were located along the r ivers for travel and trade purposes, as well as for easy acquisit ion of f i sh i n the summer and caribou in the f a l l . The introduction of better f i sh nets and repeating r i f l e s meant that both f i sh and caribou could be taken i n suff icient numbers by an individual rather than a small group. 37 As mobility increased and trade intensi f ied, trapping for furs became the major Kutchin occupation rather than subsistence hunting (McSkimming, 1975:47). However, as McSkimming (1975) and Bal ikc i (1963) noted, the Kutchin did not engage in any sort of systematic method of trapping. Father, trappers shifted extensively within a region, and did not claim ownership of trapping areas or l ines . It was not u n t i l the early 1900's, when white trappers began exploiting individual areas that the Kutchin trappers realized the advantages of ownership, and that greater productivity came when trap l ines were long and systematically checked (McSkimrrLing, 1975:49). With the increase in the price of muskrat in 1918, muskrat trapping became a major springtime ac t iv i ty for the Kutchin. Muskrats were abundant in the many lakes and streams located to the north and the south of modern day Old Crow. Because "ratting" required help, i t quickly became a family based ac t iv i ty , where entire families would move north to Crow Flats for two to three months beginning i n the early spring (Figure 2.2). Prior to t h i s , muskrat houses would be staked by the individual trapper in early winter so that they could be easi ly relocated at the beginning of the trapping season i n March. Up u n t i l breakup muskrats would be trapped; afterwards they were shot with a .22 r i f l e . Stager (1974) noted that ratt ing camps were located close together which helped increase the feeling of soc iab i l i ty usually connected with spring rat t ing . In spring, temperatures are no longer cold, daylight i s back and the snow and ice conditions are perfect for t rave l l ing . A l l in a l l , "ratting (had) a festive a i r about i t " (Stager, 1974:43). CROW FLATS, YUKON 20 —I Hi CO NJ NJ 39 Material Goods Early staples of the fur trade were tobacco, guns, ammunition, c lo th , axes, knives, needles and other metal goods (Ibid:34). The movement away from ful l - t ime subsistence hunting meant that many Kutchin became dependent on guns and ammunition in order to capture large amounts of food in a short period of time. As l i f e began to increasingly revolve around the trade post, items such as f lour , tea, sugar, canvas, twine, wire, and f i sh nets became indispensable. Most Kutchin eventually f e l l into a credit/debt relationship which only furthered their dependence on white goods. Tradit ional clothing was quickly replaced after contact by woolen sh ir t s , trousers and other clothing made from manufactured c loth . Stager (1974), noted that the only tradi t ional garment to survive into this century was the winter parka made of caribou skin. Obviously, as ac t iv i t i e s came to require only short periods of time outside, the need for tradi t ional clothing disappeared (Ibid:35). The fur trade introduced canvas tents which were more versati le than the tradi t ional skin covered dwellings. /Although log cabins were being bu i l t in the early 1900's at most f i sh camps and trapl ines , the canvas tent remained indispensable during the winter when trave l l ing , at spring ratt ing camps, and in the summer at the trading post. 40 With the introduction of trapping, transportation requirements changed. Travel distances became longer and loads requiring hauling became heavier. Toboggan-sleds were introduced to carry both furs and food, and dogs became work animals, pul l ing the sled in winter and packing food i n summer. "These two changes, trapping and dog team trave l , made winter the time to cover great distances. This was in direct contrast to the precontact travel pattern, when summer movement by water was most extensive" (Stager, 1974:37). The introduction of dogs for work purposes meant an increase in their numbers and in the amount of country food required by each Kutchin family unit . Fortunately, the introduction of r i f l e s and fishing nets made such food gathering re la t ive ly easy. The use of dog teams peaked in the 1940's and 1950's (McSkimming, 1975:51). In addition to using canvas for tents, i t was also substituted for the moose skin or birch bark used in the construction"of tradi t ional Kutchin water craf t . However, Kutchin soon came to prefer the long, narrow, flat-bottomed, plywood boat introduced by white trappers because i t could carry people, game and furs eas i ly . Canvas canoes remained in use for spring ratt ing u n t i l the mid-1970's. Social Organization White contact brought several changes to Kutchin society. As more native families became involved in the fur trade communal hunting and f ishing ac t iv i t i e s were replaced by ind iv idua l i s t i c techniques over a 41 more extensive land base. As the fur trade intensified, native dependence on white goods increased to the point where the trading post altered the Kutchin economic position to one of subordination. Both the fur trade and missionary activities were responsible for the destruction of traditional Kutchin leadership forms. Meat and fish camps were replaced by individualistic food gathering methods thereby eliminating the need for the economic chief. Similarily, the role of the tribal chief was changed to that of trading chief. Once a permanent trading post was established at New Ramparts in 1904, the already eroding position of the tribal chief disappeared completely ^fcSkimming, 1975:53). Missionary activity was responsible for the disappearance of the war chief, and the modification of the Shamen's role. Archdeacon McDonald and others have been credited with playing the lead role in bringing Esklmo-Kutchin hostilities to a close in the late 1800's. This peace ended the role of the war chief, and the potlatch, thereby knocking out one of the prime reasons for the existence of the clan (McSkimming, 1975:52; and Welsh, 1970:24). As a result, sub-endogamous marriages became common and the clan system gradually lest much of its significance. In terms of Shamanism, McSkiitiming (1975) noted that the Shamen continued to be active in Kutchin society. The Kutchin readily adopted Christian beliefs because they believed them to be the probable source of white man's power. In most bands the Shamen was trained to be a catechist by the Anglican missionaries. Thus, not only did the Shamen 42 not lose power, he also became the medium through which the church established power among the people (Ibid). Finally, the presence of the police, trading post and mission at one small nodal centre "reinforced the importance of carrnunity as a magnet" for the Kutchin (Welsh, 1970:25). Gradually, more and more people began to spend longer periods of time i n the v i c i n i t y of these centres. THE SETTLEMENT OF OLD CROW The site of Old Crow had been a gathering point for the Vunta Kutchin long before white contact. Not only had fishing always been good in the area, but the southern migration of the caribou i n late August could be easily observed from the banks of the Porcupine. This made Old Crow the ideal spot for informal gathering, trading and in t e r - t r i b a l feasting. When a fur trading post was established downstream at Ft. Yukon, Kutchin gathered at Old Crow to organize fur trading parties (McSkinining, 1975:54). By the time Dan Cadzow opened his fort upstream at New Ramparts i n 1904, the f i r s t permanent dwelling had already been bui l t at Old Crow. In 1912 two independent traders, Schultz and Johnson, b u i l t a store at Old Crow (Balikci, 1963:35). Shortly afterwards i t would become the trading point for the Vunta, Tukkuth and Natsit Kutchin bands instead of New Ramparts. The latter fort had always been poorly located with respect to traditional hunting, fishing and trapping areas. When a small 43 pox epidemic led to the burning of most of the post's houses, Old Crow became the logical alternative. Gradually native log houses were built at Old Crow especially after an Anglican Church was built in 1926 and an RCMP barracks in 1928 (Welsh 1970:25). At the height of the fur trade, 1920-1950, l i f e for most Old Crow Kutchin involved in-gathering during the summer months and dispersal to traplines throughout the winter. The opening of a school and nursing station in 1961 saw a change in the Kutchin seasonal round once again as more people settled permanently in Old Crow for the entire year. PRESENT DAY OLD CROW Old Crow today presents a different picture than i t did during the height of the fur trade period, or even 10 years ago. Life has become far more complex with the introduction of such things as wage employment, government assistance, imported foods, outside schooling and television. The presence of these in the lives of the Old Crow people have undeniably expanded wants and aspirations as well as lifestyle choices. With the establishment of a day school in 1961, most families moved permanently to Old Crow. The decline in fur prices during the 1950's and the increasing opportunities for wage employment in town, only served to reinforce' this shift to oonmunity l i f e . Currently several men continue to trap, but do so on a part time basis from town. Not only are the fur returns insufficient to maintain several household economies, but few 44 residents possess the s k i l l s necessary to make a trapping career p r o f i t a b l e . There are only two or three community members who s t i l l a c t u a l l y move out of town to maintain winter t r a p l i n e s on a regular basis. These residents tend to be older and not interested i n f u l l - t i m e wage employment.^ Physically the town remains divided i n t o two d i s t i n c t sections, the Whites and Metis l i v i n g "downtown", and the Indians l i v i n g "uptown" (Figure 2.3). Although a l l homes now have e l e c t r i c i t y , stoves, freezers and t e l e v i s i o n s , the modern, w e l l equipped buildings of the RCMP, nursing sta t i o n and school s t i l l stand out.2 Additions to the community i n recent years have been: a new community h a l l , a Band Of f i c e , a sawmill and equipment garage, and a school. Welsh (1970) noted that, "relations between Indians and Whites have become increasingly s p e c i f i c and impersonalized", and that the gap between the two ways of l i f e seems to widen with every new, modern Note 1: I t i s in t e r e s t i n g to note that McSkimming (1975), Stager (1974), and Welsh (1970) a l l stated that "almost no one maintains t r a p l i n e s i n the bush". The fur returns f o r both 1978 and 1983 (Table 4.5) show r e l a t i v e l y large fur takes. I t seems that due to the lack of wage employment i n town, some residents have shif t e d back to winter trapping i n order to supplement other income sources. 2: These buildings are s t i l l the only ones with indoor plumbing. A l l native households must have water delivered weekly and use the showers at the school. 46 building b u i l t . Today the v a l i d i t y of this statement i s questionable. Even though most whites were on short-term northern appointments, some opted to stay longer than their al lotted time. Furthermore, most interacted within the community soc ia l ly , as well as professionally. There i s the additional rea l i ty that government transfer payments have increased Old Crow's standard of l i v i n g , and that housing conditions have been greatly improved in recent years. Gradually the older log cabins are being replaced by new, more modern homes through the federal government's Native Housing Program. A Co-operative store operates in Old Crow, providing residents with a wide range of foodstuffs, equipment and dry goods. Water i s now delivered weekly by the Band Office to each home for a nominal fee, while honey bags are now picked up and taken to the sewage lagoon east of town. Hauling services about town are provided by two pick up trucks, one which i s privately owned. Addit ional ly , both the Yukon T e r r i t o r i a l Government (YTG) and the RCMP have motor vehicles which are used for various ac t iv i t i e s around town. Skidoos and boats remain the major sources of transportation for most residents. The boats are made from loca l wood and have a f l a t bottom and steep sides. In recent years, charter plane has become an alternative means of getting to Crow Flats i n the spring, especially among the elders. 47 Since the early 1960's the Canadian government has played an increasing role i n most people's l ives through social benefit programs l ike welfare, old age pension and mothers' allowance. Since the mid 1970's, the lack of ful l - t ime employment i n town for both males and females has furthered the cciritiunity' s reliance on massive government assistance. Today, the only alternative for most young people not interested in the more tradi t ional pursuits i s to move away from home to either Inuvik, Whitehorse or another centre. This outmigration i s becoming commonplace now that most young people f in ish their schooling in Whitehorse and come to enjoy "city l i f e " . Within Old Crow jobs are available with the YTG and the Band of f ice , but most of these tend to be seasonal in nature. For many residents not able or wi l l ing to move, the only way to supplement income from government assistance or seasonal work has been to shift back to the land and i t s resources. Today many families engage in spring ratt ing as a way to offset the debt they have accumulated over the winter at the Co-op. Going further, many males trap from town i n the winter, and/or gather wood for sale to the Band Office, the school or various community members. The land around Old Crow continues to supply much of the needs of the people, although the land area actually used has greatly decreased since tradi t ional times. Almost a l l the houses are made from local logs and are'heated with wood fue l . Caribou, moose and smaller mammals are s t i l l taken at levels similar to those of 25 years ago. Fish are s t i l l consumed by the people during the summer months, but have decreased with 48 respect to tota l amount caught now that dog teams have been replaced by skidoos in a l l but two households. Muskrat hunting i s s t i l l an ac t iv i ty central to the Kutchin seasonal round, f u l f i l l i n g both a cul tural and economic need. Similarly trapping continues to f u l f i l l a cul tural need for many of the older male residents, although the lack of employment opportunities in more recent years has also resulted in a shift back to trapping for some younger famil ies . It cannot be denied that imported foods have come to play a major role in the diet of the Old Crow people. Television, and increased opportunities to t rave l , have heightened most people's awareness of alternate foods. Today store bought food comprises 50% or more of the average residents' d ie t , especially for those l i v ing in households where the hunter/trapper works ful l - t ime or i s young. Nevertheless, the land and i t s bounty i s s t i l l important to many residents. Caribou and other mammals are s t i l l the major protein sources for the community and represent substantial savings i n terms of food dol lars . In terms of the social organization of the group, there have been many changes. F i r s t , aboriginal forms of leadership have completely broken down and have been replaced by a government administration imposed from outside. Although there i s an elected chief and band counci l , they are essential ly powerless with respect to most cxxununity matters (Welsh, 1970:28). 49 Secondly, the f lex ible settlement arrangement that existed in pre-contact times i s no longer possible. Today, community l i f e i s fixed which means inter-personal conf l ict cannot be solved by simply moving away. Consequently people begin to feel hemmed i n by the town, releasing the tensions they fee l through gossip, drunken agression or just generalized h o s t i l i t y . Perhaps this i s why so many residents look forward to spring rat t ing; i t represents a way to get out on the land and away from town l i f e . Welsh (1970) noted that there were posit ive social forces at work as wel l . It i s indeed true that the physical i so lat ion of the v i l l age , and the re lat ive lack of exploitation by whites has contributed to community so l idar i ty . Today, even though the i so lat ion has been somewhat broken by dai ly a i r service and te levis ion, the community remains strongly committed to maintaining their image as a "nice place". Carntunity meetings, and feasts are s t i l l important social ac t iv i t i e s and are carried out in the same way they always have been. There i s also a very deep concern today among the adult population about the behavior of some of the young people in town, as well as their movement to larger towns. Whether anything can be done to provide more direction to the community's youth in terms of l i f e s t y l e choices remains to be seen. It seems that this w i l l be the biggest test to date of the cxsiinunity's so l idar i ty . 50 CHAPTER 3 INTRODUCTION Attaching numerical values to human ac t iv i t i e s has been the focus of much research over the years. To date the most significant gains made seem to be in the area of economics, where economists have "developed sophisticated means of measuring the volume and value of production and exchange" (Usher, 1971:106). However, even for economists, evaluating human ac t iv i t i e s which occur outside the market system, and for which no cash values exist , remains a p a r t i c u l a r i l y troublesome problem. The following chapter examines the various methods that have been proposed by economists and other social scientists for valuing tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s separate from the outside market place. Using data collected on Old Crow in 1984, i t w i l l be shown that, while many of these methods can e l i c i t some interesting and potentially s ignif icant information, they f a i l to completely 'value' the production and exchange of goods produced and consumed domestically. 1. Valuing Subsistence Production i n the Developing World In the f i e l d of Economics there i s a large body of l i terature available on the value of subsistence agricul tural production in developing countries, and the place that these ac t iv i t i e s hold in a 51 country's national accounts 1 (See for example: Chibnik, 1978; Blades,1975; Webster,1974; and Clark and Haswell,1964). Of the various valuation methods presented, two seem quite appropriate for s imilar research in the north; 1) converting a l l domestically produced goods to one standard equivalent (Clark and Haswell,1964), and 2) valuing crops consumed at home according to some sort of market price (Chibnik,1978; and Webster,1974). In fact , one catches glimpses of these concepts in some of the Canadian valuation research completed to date (See for example: Usher, 1983 and 1976; F e i t , 1979; Muller-Wil le , 1978; and Kemp, 1971). However, because these concepts favour the use of quantitative economic analysis, they f a i l for two reasons at completely 'valuing' northern tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . F i r s t , the nature of subsistence agr icul tural ac t iv i t i e s i n most developing countries i s such that, i f they do occur outside the market place, they usually have cash equivalents which can be substituted into valuation research. This stems from the fact that most households engaged in subsistence agriculture grow crops which are both sold at market, and consumed domestically. The same situation exists for the majority of hand-crafted items, l ivestock, and to a certain extent, labour. This sharply contrasts the northern situation where most Note 1:' There does not appear to be a large body of l i terature i n Economics on the value of subsistence production i n hunting and gathering societ ies . This stems primarily from the absence of cash values and a market place - a problem also characterist ic of Canada's north. 52 products are consumed domestically, and where there i s a complete absence of cash equivalents for most goods, including labour input s . 1 Secondly, in the developing world, agricul tural production i s largely carried out for economic reasons; l ivel ihood and the provision of inexpensive household food. Consequently, the valuation methods applied to subsistence agricul tural ac t iv i t i e s i n developing countries have focussed largely on the quantifiable elements of the domestic economy. Economists have either not sought, or have not f e l t the need to provide a means for evaluating the role that attitudes, t radi t ion , or socia l organization may play in the maintenance of the tradi t ional sector of the economy. While these factors may not be considered "important" i n the context of the developing world, quite the opposite holds true i n the Canadian north. Here, recent research findings, and the increased art iculat ion by native people themselves of the importance of their tradi t ional land and l i f e , have proven that, i n addition to economic and nutr i t ional gain, considerable social 'value' resides i n the use of local resources. Given the above i t i s understandable why the valuation methods developed by economists for use in an agricul tural context would have limited success when applied to the north. In fact , the adoption of such methods in their conventional from by Canadian researchers has fa i l ed to Note 1: Lonner (1981) notes that there i s rarely any opportunity cost experienced by those involved in subsistence production. Wage employment i s such that domestic ac t iv i t i e s rarely conf l ic t i n terms of time available. 53 completely 'value' tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . However, when variations of these concepts were applied in Old Crow some interesting information and ideas were generated. For this reason, an examination of the relevant studies and their drawbacks seems in order. 2. The Use of Standard Equivalents The notion of converting domestically produced goods to one standard equivalent was tested i n the Canadian A r c t i c by William Kemp i n 1971. Kemp was attempting to gain insight into the process of adaptation by modem Eskimos to a non-hunting system of l ivel ihood and socia l organization, through the use of energy flows (1971:105). While this research was not an attempt at valuation, i t s observations and conclusions suggest that the use of such measures for this purpose would prove inadequate. For a period of one year Kemp monitored the patterns of energy use by both a "modern" and a "traditional" household to see i f modernization had altered the al location of available energy to those ac t iv i t i e s deemed essential for survival . Predictably, Kemp found that when more modern ways were adopted, energy inputs increased and took several new forms such as: fue l , technology, and imported food products. Surprisingly however, while time spent hunting decreased, the frequency of harvest did not increase (Kemp, 1971:110). Kemp concluded that with the introduction of a cash economy the maintenance of a hunting way of l i f e had taken on a different strategy, but that the fundamental linkage - the re lat ion between hunter and land - had remained the same (Ibid:115). 54 Could Kemp have said more about the 'value' of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s i f he had used the data collected di f ferent ly , or i f some other standard equivalent had been chosen? The answer to th is inevitably transgresses into a discussion on the many problems which plague most quantitative research i n the north. F i r s t , there i s the question of data scope. If one were to use Kemp's concept of energy flows, how would one successfully follow the energy inputs and yields of ten famil ies , l e t alone an entire community or a region the size of the eastern Arct ic? In Old Crow for example, i t was found that native harvesting took place whenever the opportunity presented i t s e l f . With the resulting products being quickly distributed through customary channels, i t was more than once that the researcher missed recording incoming harvests. Closely a f f i l i a t ed with this problem of scope i s the whole question of time. Patterns of resource dependency are constantly fluctuating from year to year in the north as individual households respond dif ferent ly to changes in species a v a i l a b i l i t y , fur prices , job opportunities and so on. How can a study carried out intensively for only a short period of time possibly capture the wide range of economic strategies a ccmnunity might adopt for a year, or a period of years i n response to these changes? If a time dimension i s not incorporated, the study results may not be tru ly indicative of the actual place that tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s hold i n a cxxtirtunity's domestic economy. 55 Compounding the problems of scope and time i s a lack of recorded data that i s both re l iab le and extensive. Comprehensive h i s tor i ca l prof i les for every northern community do not exist . Furthermore, quantitative data collected at the regional and t e r r i t o r i a l levels has l imited use due to wide variations i n ; col lect ion approaches, ac t iv i t i e s or species studied, and time periods covered (Usher, 1983 and 1982). This deficiency of a re l iab le and comparable data base has made i t d i f f i c u l t for quantitative research projects to span long periods of time, or go beyond analyzing at the household or cxamiunity l eve l : restr ict ions that can hinder the a b i l i t y to make general statements about 'value' that are t ru ly accurate and applicable on a wider scale. F i n a l l y , even i f the researcher could incorporate some scope or a time dimension, there remains the whole question of the socia l 'value' that subsistence ac t iv i t i e s hold for native people. This 'value' i s both qualitat ive and often subjective in nature, and i s therefore very d i f f i c u l t , i f not impossible to f u l l y capture through quantitative analyses (Lonner, 1981). This i s not to say that the information gathered through such methods i s to ta l ly incorrect , or that the insight gained i s not useful . Quite the contrary i s true, these methods can be one of many tools a researcher might employ when conducting research that concerns valuing a c t i v i t i e s . However, i t must also be recognized that while i t may be useful to measure certain ac t iv i t i e s by assigning uniform units , be they calories or seal skins, assigning similar units to opportunity costs, soc ia l interaction, avoidance of r i s k , and so on w i l l f a i l to produce t ru ly accurate results (Lonner, 1981:47). 56 In conclusion, maybe we should not expect more than just general conclusions about 'value' from most quantitative research. Perhaps Kemp's conclusion that, although material opportunities and hunting strategies have changed, native people have continued to 'value' the tradi t ional way of l i f e , i s a l l we rea l l y should be expecting from quantitative valuation research. 3. Valuing Tradit ional Ac t iv i t i e s Using Substitution Costs In 1976 Peter Usher formally introduced the idea of imputing values to country food consumed by humans, as a means of valuing production from the land (p. 112). Usher selected food consumption because "the use of country produce other than for food, or furs for sale, was limited" (Ibid:107). Imputing cash values to country produce was by no means an untested concept in 1976. Ear l i er research by: Gourdeau, 1974; Palmer, 1973; Bissett , 1973; and Usher, 1971, had revealed some interesting figures on the economic value of food. However, in 1976 i t was Usher's contention that substitution costs rather than loca l exchange rates or opportunity costs, was the most appropriate means for imputing these values (p. 111). This stemmed from the observation that the aim of northern valuation research was to measure the welfare of native people part ic ipat ing in the tradi t ional sector and not their contribution to the national economy (Ibid: 112-113). Only the idea of substitution costs asks what i t would cost the individual to achieve the same level of well being i f he had to purchase the commodities he currently produced himself. 57 In discussing this approach to valuation Usher corrected what he f e l t were problems with previous investigations. In order to capture as wide a range of value as possible, Usher made provisions for incorporating, regional differences i n the cost and type of food to be substituted, the nutr i t ional variation between country food and imported substitutes, and the production costs foregone by purchasing rather than hunting food. Despite these changes however, many problems remain with this type of valuation approach, problems that Usher himself has acknowledged (1984, 1983 and 1976). To begin with, assigning r e t a i l prices to subsistence products, through substitution costs or any other method, immediately treats the •value' of the product according to use. Research has shown however, that people often 'value' products produced and consumed at home as being higher than their market price based on objective/subjective measures (Chibnik, 1978). In the case of the north, production i s for both use and exchange and i s governed largely by non-economic goals l i k e , security, and the distr ibutor of social forms between households (Lonner,1981:46). In Old Crow for instance, part ic ipation i n spring ratt ing has changed l i t t l e i n the las t 10-15 years despite higher production costs and a general decline in the price of furs (see Table 3 .1 ) . 1 As in 1973, Note 1: The low 1960 figure i s probably due to the c y c l i c a l nature of muskrat populations and not low part ic ipat ion rates. The lower per capita figures for 1978 and 1983 are because not just the adult population figure was u t i l i z e d . Children also participate in muskrat production and are considered a valuable labour input at a camp. 58 Table 3.1 MUSKRAT HARVESTING ACTIVITIES IN OLD CROW 1960 - 1983 1960 1973 1978 1983 A) MUSKRAT ' HARVEST Total 8,950 13,725 15,983 12,349! Per Camp 448 521 639 618 Per Trapper/Hunter 389 320 246 238 B) CAMP PRODUCTIVITY # Camps 20 27 25 20 # People as % 56.6% 69.2% 32.9% 23.6% of Total Pop. 2 # People at Camps 23 43 65 52 Source: 1960 + 1973 - J . K . Stager (1974) 1978 + 1983 - f i e l d data (1984) Notes 1: The figure for 1983 was actually closer to 12,500 but 185 or so were taken by trapping outside the f la t s . 2: 1960 and 1973 figures include just adult trappers and not their families (% figures are for adult population only) . 1978 and 1983 figures include a l l who participated in ratt ing camps including children who were productive (>6 years of age) 59 spring ratt ing i s s t i l l viewed by most residents as a source of pocket money and food, as well as a way to pay off debts at the Co-op (Stager, 1973:57). It i s also a chance for families to get out on the land after the long, cold and dark days of winter. Several informants emphasized the socia l and cul tural rejuvenation they experienced by br i e f l y retreating to the land i n May and June. Others stressed the importance of ratt ing camp as a chance for teaching children tradi t ional s k i l l s . Going further, i t i s s t i l l commonplace in Old Crow for the freezers and caches of the older residents, the luckless or the unskilled to be f i l l e d with meat before the f a l l hunt i s even complete. A l l the households interviewed (73% of a l l households) acknowledged sharing a l l or most of the products gathered from the land with family and friends. On at least three occasions meat was seen leaving the ccmnunity for friends and relat ives in the southern Yukon. Clearly , tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s hold more than just economic value for the people of Old Crow. Besides multiple nutr i t ional and economic products, there are also soc ia l , cul tural and other non-monetary personal rewards. A l l of these non-market 'values' are defined by individuals or by the community as a whole, and not by the forces of supply and demand. Given t h i s , i t must be acknowledged that monetary valuations can never "indicate the 'value' of hunting as a social or cultural ac t iv i ty , or as a way of l i f e" (Usher, 1976:117). A second problem with assigning substitution costs to local food i s the whole question of what constitutes an appropriate substitute. While Usher and others have chosen imported meat as the closest possible 60 substitute, data from Old Crow indicates that the native people f ind country food far superior in terms of taste and nutr i t ion , and that they do not even attempt to replace i t with imported food products. Imported meat products were occasionally purchased as a means of adding variety to the da i ly d iet , but for the most part: eggs, f lour , sugar, macaroni, candy and convenience foods were the most popular imported food items (Murphy, 1984). Furthermore, 55% of a l l households interviewed (51) believed that 50% or more of their food needs were met by the land. Only 11.7% of the households stated that less than 25% of their food needs were sat isf ied by loca l food, while 6% did not know at a l l (see Table 3.2). M l interviewees admitted that they preferred the taste of caribou, rabbit , muskrat and so on to that of imported meat products. Table 3.3 outlines the amount of country food consumed by the people of Old Crow i n 1973 and 1983. Mthough the 1983 data do not represent the to ta l food consumed i n Old Crow in that year, comparisons with 1973 can s t i l l be made, especially given the to ta l population represented by each data set. Of most significance here i s the fact that while increased emphasis has been placed on the cash economy by the residents of Old Crow in the past decade, their consumption of country food has not decreased at a l l . In fact , i t i s re la t ive ly safe to conclude that consumption has increased in response to the increase in population^. Note 1: The population i n 1973 was 183 while i t was 220 in 1983. The fact that harvest s ta t i s t i c s for 73.6% of the population in 1983 produced comparable consumption figures to 1973 means that consumption figures are probably higher for 100% of the population. 61 Table 3.2 PERCEIVED PROPORTION OF FOOD OBTAINED FROM SUBSISTENCE ACTIVITIES OLD CROW (1984) Perceived Proportion 1 # of Households % of Total (51) < 25% 6 11.7 25% 11 21.6 26 - 49% 3 5.9 50% 21 41.2 51 - 74% 2 3.9 75% 3 5.9 76 - 99% 2 3.9 ? 3 5.9 51 100% (168 people or 76.3% of Total Population) Note 1: The question read, "How much of a l l the food you and your family eat would you say comes from hunting, f i shing, trapping and so on?" Source: f i e ld data, 1984. 62 Table 3.3 AMOUNT OF COUNTRY POOD IN THE DIET OF OLD CROW PEOPLE 1973 AND 1983 Total Harvest (kgs) kg/person/yr kg/person/day Population % Pop. of to ta l pop. 19731 50,455.43 275.7 .75 183 100% 1983A2 40,968.26 252.89 .69 162 73.6% 1983B3 62,761.26 387.42 1.06 162 73.6% Note 1: Figures for 1973 were derived from data presented i n J.Stager's study of Old Crow (1974). A l l weights were converted to match the 1983 data which was based on the edible weights of country food presented in Berger, 1977. (See Table 3.4) 2: Figures here are from the f i e l d and represent the amount of country food consumed by 47 out of 70 households in Old Crow in 1983. 3: Figures here are based on YTG harvest records for caribou (1983/84) and f i e l d data for a l l other products. Although they do not represent to ta l kilograms consumed they are closer than the data presented under 1983A. 4: For a complete breakdown of harvest data/edible weights derived from this data and so forth see Tables B - l and B-2 in Appendix B. 63 It i s interesting to note that the per capita country food consumption levels correspond to findings by Dimitrov & Weinstein i n Ross River, Yukon (1984)1; Usher (1982:442)2; and Berger (1977:33)3. Furthermore, that they are also substantially higher than the national average for consumption of meat and f i s h 4 . F i n a l l y , both sets of figures are similar to those found i n several Alaskan communities by, the Division of Subsistence for the Federal Department of Fish and Game (1984), Kruse (1981), Fe i t (1979), and Tanner (1979). This being the case, the question arises - i s i t r e a l i s t i c to even ta lk of using substitution or replacement costs when there i s currently no need or desire among the majority of native people to replace their present use of country food with imported food products? Before this question can be answered, one more factor needs to be considered. Up u n t i l th is point the economic value of country food has not been mentioned. The argument against the use of monetary valuation has focussed largely on the non-economic significance of country food. It has been shown that w i l d l i f e harvesting i s important to community Note 1: Dimitrov & Weinstein calculated 285.1 kg/person/yr i n Ross River for 1981/1982. 2:' Usher found a variety of consumption figures for the north based on existing research (see 1982:442) 3: Berger found the average consumption for the central Mackenzie & Western Arc t i c was 109 kg/person/year. 4: 79 kg/person/year.(Usher 1982:442, based on the avg for 1970-74). 64 solidarity, the traditional system of mutual aid and sharing, the socialization of children, and psychological satisfaction (taste preference). However, i t cannot be denied that extreme economic value is attached to the production of goods from the land by native northerners. Contemporary economic circumstances in the north dictate that most native households participate in both the cash and subsistence sectors of the economy. The community of Old Crow does not escape this condition. Employment opportunities are limited and often seasonal in nature, while government transfer payments can only partially subsidize the cost of living in this remote community. Table 3.4 presents the estimated value of the annual meat harvest in Old Crow (1983), according to the cost of imported meats.1 These figures were derived from harvest data collected in the field (Tables B-l and B-2 in Appendix B). It is important to note that a correction factor for nutritional differences was not applied to the average price per kilogram used, nor were production costs subtracted from the final figure. Widely accepted methods for incorporating the former are difficult to find in the literature, while collecting data for the latter can be complicated. This is especially true when one considers that most households have at least two hunter/trappers owning their own equipment, equipment and labour is often shared between households, and the use of barter rather Note 1: As noted in Table 3.4 valuation was done using 1984 prices. However, because prices and harvest levels changed l i t t l e between 1983 + 1984, the total value figures are probably fairly indicative of the contemporary situation in Old Crow. 65 Table 3.4 ESTIMATED VALUE OF ANNUAL MEAT HARVESTS OLD CROW 19831 SPECIES FOOD WEIGHT TOTAL VALUE (KG) Caribou 32,700.00 $301,167.00 Moose 4,378.00 40,321.38 Rabbits 263.84 2,176.68 Birds 231.81 1,678.30 Muskrats 1,529.18 12,615.73 Fish 1,865.43 15,352.49 40,968.26 (kgs) $373,311.58 Avg $ value/household = $7,777.32 (48) Note 1: Values were based on prices at the Co-op i n 1984. Substitute $Ag Caribou beef 9.21 2 Moose beef 9.21 Rabbits pork chops (loin) 8.25 Birds chicken 7.243 Muskrat pork chops (loin) 8.25 Fish beef/chicken/pork 8.23 4 2: Average price for a l l beef products available. 3: Average price for a l l chicken products available (whole chickens were not used only because not popular) 4: Average of beef/pork/chicken because no f ish sold l o c a l l y . The probabil i ty that residents would substitute beef etc was equal so the average was used. For more information see Murphy, 1984. Source: F ie ld data 66 than cash exchange plays a major role both economically and soc ia l ly in the subsistence system. Consequently, in the case of Old Crow, value was imputed by simply using direct substitution. While this did not give precise value, the values derived were believed suitable for the purposes of th is discussion. The estimates presented suggest that i t would have taken approximately $373,000.00 (1984 prices) to replace the meat and f i sh currently consumed by 48 households in Old Crow. If we were to use the harvest figures from the 1983B column of Table 3.3, the to ta l figure would increase to $574,089.58. This i s probably a more accurate approximation, and does not seem out of l ine when one compares i t to figures for Ross River; namely, $416,062.05 (1983 prices) for 90% of the population (243) (Dimitrov and Weinstein, 1984). Going further, the average annual cost for replacement incurred by each household in Old Crow would be somewhere in the order of $7,700.00 (Table 3.4). This would represent a substantial increase i n the cost of l i v i n g , especially when one considers that the - average cost of obtaining country food in Old Crow for a l l of 1983 was only $366.00 per household 1. This figure i s s ignif icant ly lower than Usher's 1982 figure Note l : 'The figure $366.00 i s based only on the gasoline, o i l and food costs incurred by 44 households i n 1983 for hunting etc. This costs does not include the cost of ratt ing because only 50% of those who hunted or trapped rats admitted to eating them, and a l l households recovered the costs of ratt ing through the commercial sale of the pel ts . (See Table B-3 for hunting cost data) 67 of $800/household for the Inuit of Northern Labrador or Fe i t ' s 1979 figure of $1045/household for the James Bay Cree. This i s probably due to the location of Old Crow's resource hinterland. The major food sources for the community's inhabitants - caribou, moose, and f i s h , can a l l be harvested within 20 miles of Old Crow. As such time spent either trave l l ing or, out on the land, may be far less than in some other northern communities where resources are not located close to town. Table 3.6 summarizes the cost of substitution versus the actual cost of hunting and f ishing as a proportion of to ta l income for 40 households in Old Crow. 1 Even i f we take into account the fact that to ta l income and harvesting costs were often derived from crude estimates because of the private nature of income and expenditures, the sizeable difference between the two percentage figures for most households cannot be overlooked. In the case of these 40 households the average cost per year for substituting with imported foods was $7,228.79. This i s quite significant when one considers that the average income of these 40 households was $15,636.92 or that the median income was $11,429.29 (Table 3.5). Without a doubt then, the production of food from the land represents a very real source of income i n kind for most households i n Old Crow. In fact , the land and i t s bounty continue to offer a material and soc ia l security at a time when there are insuff icient alternative Note 1: Only complete harvest, income, and cost data existed for 40 of the 51 households interviewed, and therefore only these 40 were used. 68 Table 3.5 ANNUAL INCOME DISTRIBUTION IN OLD CROW, 1983 Income Range No. of Households Income $ 3,000 - 5,999 7 1 $ 6,000 - 8,999 9 2 $ 9,000 - 11,999 8 3 $12,000 - 19,999 9 4 $20,000 - 29,999 9 5 $30,000 - 39,999 3 6 $ $40,000 2 7 47 Median Annual Income From A l l Sources 1 $11,429.29 Average Annual Income From A l l Sources $15,461.51 Note 1: A l l sources means wages/transfer payments and income from fur harvesting and handicrafts. It does not include substituted costs for local food production and the l i k e . Source: F ie ld data 69 Table 3.6 COST OP SUBSTITUTION VERSUS THE COST OF HUNTING AND FISHING FOR FOOD, OLD CROW, 19831 Household Inccgne Class 1 1 5 2 2 3 4 4 1 5 4 6 2 7 1 8 4 9 1 10 3 11 2 12 3 13 6 14 1 15 2 16 2 17 5 18 2 19 5 20 4 21 5 22 4 23 5 24 5 25 3 26 4 27 3 28 5 29 4 30 6 31 1 32 3 33 5 34 7 35 7 36 2 37 3 38 5 39 1 40 4 Substitution Harvesting Costs costs as a % as a % of Total of Total Income2 Income3 62 3 137 0 116 2 28 0 64 5 7 0 98 5 104 4 25 0 12 2 6 0 45 3 38 2 10 0 27 0 46 2 54 0 19 0 74 4 59 2 3 0 50 2 47 2 85 3 170 4 12 0 139 35 25 1 44 8 31 2 37 0 22 1 63 22 7 2 6 1 16 2 95 2 41 0 42 0 60 1 /u Table 3.6 cont'd $ VALUE % OF TOTAL INCOME Total Income 625,476.97 (40 Hshlds) Total Cost of 289,151.85 46% Substitution (40 Hshlds) Total Cost of 13,475.00 2% Hunting (40 Hshlds) Source: Fie ld data Note 1: See Table 3.5 for categories of income. 2: % of to ta l income spent on substitution was derived by substituting costs of imported food products to known consumption levels/household (see Table B - l and 3.4 for weights used and $ values assigned). 3: % of to ta l income spent on harvesting was derived from the cost of gasoline, o i l and food incurred by each household while hunting etc - No other production costs l ike skidoo parts are included here. (See Table B-3). 71 sources of l ive l ihood, and when numerous internal and external forces of a change are active in the community. Having said this we can now answer the question posed on page 63. Before doing so however, the question must be revised so that i t now reads: i s i t r e a l i s t i c to even talk of substitution or replacement costs when there i s currently no need, desire, or pract ica l economic means among the majority of native people to replace their present use of country food with imported food products? To suddenly replace country food with imported meat products would in a l l l ikelihood seriously undermine the economic resources of most households in Old Crow, and by implication lead to an extreme dependence on state assistance. Usher (1983:33) suggests that in the long run this leads to the eventual loss of community so l idar i ty and the tradi t ional system of mutual aid and sharing - those relations of production which have been responsible for the perpetuation of the man-land relationship for most native northerners. Given the current distress over declining community so l idar i ty by many residents in Old Crow, i t i s doubtful i f the community would embrace the idea of substitution costs, and a l l that i t implies. It i s acknowledged that most advocates of the idea of substitution costs reeognize the important social 'value' that subsistence production serves, and that they are merely using substitution costs to theoret ical ly impart value to the quantifiable elements of the 72 tradi t ional economy. According to Usher for example: "a consideration of nutr i t ional and economic well-being alone i s somewhat reductionist . The relationship between tradi t ional resources and social organization i s also important" (1981:61). If this i s indeed the bel ief of most researchers, why do they continue to reduce the re lat ive worth of subsistence production to one generalized medium of exchange? - a medium that i s unreal is t ic because native people currently have neither the means nor the need to buy imported food products, l e t alone the desire. The use of substitution costs not only excludes a l l the non-market 'values' of subsistence production, i t ignores a l l the other mediums of exchange operative in a subsistence economy: food, clothing, gas, equipment, labour and so on (Lonner, 1981:60). By applying monetized measures of the market economy researchers in essence f a i l to treat the subsistence economy as a d i s t inc t ly different social and economic form which interacts with the wage economy (Lonner,-1981; and Tanner, 1979). This has very serious implications when one considers that administrators and pol icy makers often make decisions based on research findings, and not after extensive personal examination of a s i tuation. If a researcher has fa i led to include the very important social 'values', there i s the danger that pol ic ies and development strategies w i l l , i n the end, undermine the tradi t ional economy he/she or ig ina l ly sought to preserve. 73 4. Valuing Subsistence Production Using Production Costs The use of production costs as a means of valuation began appearing i n the l i terature i n the 1970' s as a means of giving added accuracy to the values obtained through the use of straight substitution or replacement costs (See for example: F e i t , 1979; Muller-Wil le , 1978; Nowak, 1977; and Usher, 1971). This stemmed largely from the observation that i n order for any assessment of the savings realizable through the use of tradi t ional foods to be correct, i t had to include both the to ta l amount of edible food obtained and the cost of basic equipment, including operation costs (Nowak, 1977). While th is method of valuation i s , for the most part , just an extension of replacement costs, i t has some unique problems which warrant i t s separate investigation. Immediately one can see that, as with substitution costs, this method w i l l in no way account for the socia l or non market 'values' of production. Secondly, i t suffers from the problem of time and scope mentioned ear l i er . The normal method for determining production costs i s to conduct a census of gear, and to determine i t s average cost and depreciation rate along with typical operating costs (Usher, 1983:25). Unfortunately this data has never been collected on a systematic basis in northern Canada, and to d o so would require exhaustive surveys at the local leve l (Ibid:29). While the col lect ing of such data may be feasible with respect to time for one community, i t i s impractical at the more useful regional or t e r r i t o r i a l levels . 74 A•th ird problem with the use of production costs i s that in most communities harvesting of w i ld l i f e i s carried out for both commercial and subsistence purposes, and therefore production costs often overlap. It i s also not uncommon to find most hunters engaging in multipurpose tr ips out on the land, or for game to be taken simply when the opportunity presents i t s e l f . Given th i s , how does one assign depreciation and operating costs to each ac t iv i ty , and in what quantity? Assigning an appropriate depreciation rate can be a d i f f i c u l t task i n the north. Research in Old Crow for example, revealed that: - equipment was often shared or even-owned col lect ive ly; - certain pieces of equipment received less use than others; - some residents took very good care of their equipment which increased i t s l ifespan; and - the terrain and weather was such that i t did not dras t i ca l ly reduce the lifespan of r i f l e s , skidoos e t c . 1 A l l of these, either individual ly or in combination, have a bearing on the depreciation rate used. They also introduce such questions as; which piece of equipment should receive more depreciation than another, and should a rate be chosen on a household basis? In the case of the la t ter , i f one does opt for the individual household one may gain accuracy at the community l eve l , but may do so at the expense of comparability at a larger scale. Note 1: In 1978 Muller-Wille noted that snowmobiles and other equipment had a short l ifespan in the Central Arc t i c due to both the environment and use 75 Another pract ica l problem noted by Usher (1983) i s that of determining what i s an essential productive input - that which would not have been purchased i f the individual ceased production. In most northern ccmmunities, snowmobiles, r i f l e s , chainsaws and even boats are used i n day to day l i f e outside of hunting and trapping a c t i v i t i e s . Going further, there i s the whole question of shared equipment and labour. Often quick partnerships are formed for a certain harvesting ac t i v i ty . In Old Crow, many of these partnerships arose out of convenient time scheduling, age compatibility or a favour owed, "rather than the more tradi t ional reasons of family or Kinship t i e s . This made i t extremely d i f f i c u l t to sort out exactly whose equipment was responsible for the production of goods, and therefore who should be assigned the depreciation and harvesting costs. Furthermore, many mediums of exchange existed in Old Crow which meant that production "costs" were often not neatly definable. Many residents bought gas in exchange for meat while others provided labour, beadwork, sewing, chopping wood, or hunting i n exchange for products from the land. Informant r e c a l l i s another problem which plagues this type of research. While the number of gallons purchased may be remembered by an indiv idual , the number of shells used, the food bought for a t r i p and so on are not so eas i ly recal led . By implication then, in order to be accurate, production cost studies are best carried out while a community i s actually engaged i n tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . Unfortunately, this i s both time intensive and extensive in scope. 76 F i n a l l y , there i s the problem of s o c i a l status. Unless a researcher can observe every s i n g l e hunter/trapper, i t i s quite p o s s i b l e that many t r i p s out on the land w i l l remain unrecorded because the hunter was unsuccessful. Even though no production a c t u a l l y occurred, the cost of such an endeavour i s part of the annual t o t a l cost of t r a d i t i o n a l a c t i v i t i e s for a household. However, i n many communities a c e r t a i n amount of s o c i a l status i s gained through a person's success as a hunter. Thus, unsuccessful t r i p s can be c o s t l y not only economically, but s o c i a l l y . While everyone i n town w i l l probably be aware of a hunter's bad luck, the hunter himself may not wish to advertise how much was l o s t economically, e s p e c i a l l y to an outsider. The above are the major problems which plague the c o l l e c t i o n of production cost data and i t s use i n valuation research. While such a method i s useful i n helping to assess the act u a l and p o t e n t i a l savings p o s s i b l e through the use of country food, i t cannot generate an accurate o v e r a l l 'value 1. As with the other q u a n t i t a t i v e a n a l y s i s , the s o c i a l realm of production i s ignored - the realm which plays a major r o l e i n the l i v e s of native northerners. S U M M A R Y Although several economic and/or q u a n t i t a t i v e measures apparently e x i s t for 'valuing' human a c t i v i t i e s , methods which a c t u a l l y i d e n t i f y a l l the 'values' associated with t r a d i t i o n a l a c t i v i t i e s separate from the northern market economy are noticeably l a c k i n g . The four approaches examined here are us e f u l to the researcher i n that t h e i r a p p l i c a t i o n can 77 provide beneficial information and insight. However, they are s t i l l imperfect in fully'valuing'the place of tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s for five major reasons: 1) the lack of re l iable and comprehensive data at regional and t e r r i t o r i a l levels which could help f i l l in information gaps; 2) their time and scope biases; 3) their fa i lure to incorporate the non-market 'values' of a subsistence system; 4) their emphasis on the use of monetized measures of exchange; namely cash, whose basis is in the market economy; and 5) their attempt to make generalizations about very unique and different socio-economic systems for the sake of regional or state analyses. A l l four approaches were applied in the study of the community of Old Crow, Yukon. Although the information gained revealed some significant conditions; l ike the unaltered consumption of country food, they were a l l found to f a i l at producing a comprehensive value. What was missing in a l l four approaches was the real izat ion that the subsistence system in northern hunting societies is a separate and dis t inct socio-economic form where people make rational decisions based on tradit ion and custom, in addition to their contemporary socio-economic circumstances. 78 CHAPTER 4 INTRCCUCTION The simple fact that the Old Crow people continue to harvest local resources at levels comparable, or even greater than those of twenty-five years ago, i s in i t s e l f an indication of 'value'. Admittedly, certain tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s have either been abandoned or become anomalous, but others have been consciously preserved or even intensif ied out of contemporary socio-economic circumstance. The persistence of hunting, trapping and fishing a c t i v i t i e s , however modified, represents the rat ional adaptation by a group of marginalized people to several forces of change. They are ac t iv i t i e s the people of Old Crow strongly identify with, and therefore 'value'. Chapter 3 examined the existing methods of valuation. Regrettably, non quantifiable values l ike tradi t ion , social status and the share ethic could not be accounted for through economic or quantitative analysis . In order to be complete, the valuation of the land and i t s resources must include other factors l i k e the cu l tura l , psychological and nutr i t ional significance these elements hold for native people. This chapter outlines an approach that extends existing methods and concepts to a point where they do identify the social 'values' of tradi t ional pursuits. 79 Before continuing i t should be noted that the f i e l d s i t e , Old Crow, i s unique in terms of resource a v a i l a b i l i t y . Unlike many other northern native communities, Old Crow enjoys a hinterland r ich in food and fur resources which can be accessed in less than a day's travel time. This, coupled by Old Crow's re lat ive i so lat ion has created a situation whereby the Old Crow people have been able to continue practicing tradi t iona l pursuits without having to for fe i t the amenities of town l i f e . Resource Use In Contemporary Old Crow At the outset i t was stated that i n order to establish a more h o l i s t i c means of identifying 'values', native attitudes and perceptions toward the land, both past and present, needed to be ident i f ied . Three general categories of data were l i s ted in connection with this exercise: 1) those tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s a cul tural group has chosen to preserve while undergoing complex social transformations; 2) the 'value' assigned these ac t iv i t i e s by the people themselves: economic, cu l tura l , h i s tor i ca l and so forth; and 3) the social relations of production operative in a society which cause the 'value' assigned an ac t iv i ty to fluctuate over time. If the data relevant to each category could be identif ied successfully, then one could infer from this the 'values' that resources held for the group in' question. In the case of Old Crow, this task was made easy by the fact that extensive h i s tor i ca l data pertaining to the three categories already existed. This was integrated with the 1984 data. The results are presented below. 80 i) Traditional Activities in Contemporary Old Crow In 1974, J.K.Stager presented information on the spatial land use around Old Crow for three separate time periods. He noted that "Long Ago" (1930's and 1940's) native land use was extensive (Figure 4.1). "Traplines and hunting camps covered nearly 25,000 square miles of land" (Stager, 1974:48). In the spring, nineteen ratting camps were operative at Crow Flats north of Old Crow. By 1960 the land use area had decreased to 15,000 square miles (Figure 4.2). A l l but two traplines originated at Old Crow. The presence of a mission school and wage employment encouraged most people to take up permanent settlement in town. This in turn resulted in a reduction in extensive land/water travel for hunting, trapping and fishing a c t i v i t i e s . Surprisingly though, the number of fishing locations increased, perhaps due to the ava i lab i l i t y of better, more ef f ic ient nets. Dog team was s t i l l the primary form of winter transportation and therefore gathering f ish remained a major summertime ac t iv i ty . In 1973 (Figure 4.3), a l l the people were permanently settled in Old Crow. "Winter trapping and traplines a l l originated in Old Crow and were of weekend travel length" (Ibid:51). Hunting had become almost exclusive to the Porcupine River with few hunters engaging in tr ips lasting more than a couple of days. Dogteam was s t i l l a common enough form of winter transportation, and therefore summer fishing continued to be important for some households. In terms of muskrat harvests, although 1973 saw the 81 Figure 4.1 8 3 F i g u r e 4.3 84 number of families participating increase, the shorter amount of time being spent ratt ing, meant that harvest levels remained the same as those of previous years. The data collected during the summer of 1984 revealed some interesting s imi lar i t i es and differences to that presented by Stager in 1974. In both 1978 and 1983 hunting patterns were similar to those of 1973 (Figures 4.4 and 4.5). As in 1973, hunting for food was largely an autumn act iv i ty and tended to be concentrated along the Porcupine River within a days travel distance from town. Conversely though, the number of winter traplines increased. It seems that the lack of winter employment opportunities in both 1978 and 1983 resulted in more men spending time trapping from town. Also important to note here is that, the average trapline length increased from 1973, and was closer to the 1960 length (see Table 4.6). According to several informants, the reason for low trapping rates in 1973 was because of the ava i lab i l i t y of wage employment at the o i l exploration camps located near Eagle Plains, Yukon. The change in tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s between 1973 and more recent years only reinforces the argument that valuation research must incorporate a time dimension in order to be accurate. By 1978, most households possessed a skidoo, thereby v i r t u a l l y eliminating the need for several dogs, and by implication dog food. This change is reflected in contemporary fishing patterns (Figure 4.6). Fishing ac t iv i t i e s are now carried out very close to town with some nets being operated by two or more households. These households take turns 8 5 Figure 4.4 86 Figure 4.5 87 checking the nets every other day or so, which decreases both the cost and time spent fishing by any one household. Going further, the number of families who actually go to f i sh camps now is very small. Those who did go admitted that today f ish camp was as much an opportunity to get away from town, gather wood and hunt for meat, as i t was for gathering f ish for food. Intense fishing ac t iv i ty s t i l l occurs in the f a l l before and after freeze-up when dog (chum) salmon are available. Several f i sh can be caught within a short period of time and nets can be checked from town in one or two hours. /Additionally, the f ish freezes outside easi ly at this time. Dog salmon is s t i l l the major source of food for the one or two dogs now owned by each household. Wood for fuel is s t i l l collected and used by every native house-hold. The 1978 and 1983 sites were similar to those of 1973; twelve miles downriver, six miles upriver and behind town on Crow Mountain. The sites for a l l three years d i f fer from those shown for 1960 and long ago because during these ear l ier years wood gathering was carried out along the trapline, far away from town (Figure 4.6) . . The decreased number of s ites shown in 1978 and 1983 is due to poor questionnaire response, and/or the fact that now many people obtain wood from the Band wood program instead of gathering their own. It in no way represents a decrease in the number of households using wood heat. The number of families travel l ing to Crow Flats in the spring has remained re lat ive ly stable since 1973. Ratting is s t i l l a very important 88 Figure 4.6 ACTIVITIES LOCATED NEAR OLD CROW • hunting si tes A f i sh ing s i tes • f irewood locat ions • O l d Crow A 1960 ^ \ 1973 O ( J t>o\A ~N~V\ 1978 <—-) v """W 1983 - ^ o ^ - ^ o ^ I Sour-cci McSVClwwlr ig / ftnd Field Pa hi 89 social event and provides extra income for many households. The only differences worth noting between 1978/1983 and the ear l ier years are that; the time actually spent in the Flats has decreased, and a charter plane is now used as a means of getting to the F la t s . The mapping of land use for different points in time has identif ied spatial land-use changes. However, i t has said nothing about part ic ipat ion or harvest levels . This type of information is also required i f the identi f icat ion of those tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s a cultural group has chosen to preserve is to be complete. Table 4.1 outlines Old Crow's game returns for a twenty year period. Most of the data is from the Yukon T e r r i t o r i a l Government's Game Branch records. Because these are usually collected through a mailed questionnaire, figures presented here may be less than the actual amount harvested in any one year. Despite this , harvest levels for almost a l l species have changed l i t t l e in twenty years. Only the f ish and caribou returns show any appreciable differences. Table 4.2 breaks f ish harvests down by species. Major declines have occurred for those species tradi t ional ly used for dog food; chum, whitefish and "other". The period between 1973 and 1978 saw most households discontinue the use of a dogteam thereby eliminating the need for large amounts of f i sh . Today most households keep one or two dogs, primarily for the purpose of a watchdog while out on the land. Table 4.1 OLD CROW GAME RETURNS FOR 1963 - 1976, 1978, 1983 1 2 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1978 1983 Species -64 -65 -66 -67 -68 -69 -70 -71 -72 -73 -74 -75 -76 -79 -84 Cari bou* 706 769 - 592 590 557 478 503 573 751 607 382 765 900 1000 Moose 10 7 - 22 17 24 18 11 26 22 1 15 27 24 22 Bear 1 1 _ 4 3 1 5 1 2 n N C 4 5 ? 7 O Geese 15 3 - 4 11 25 5 0 12 M p 4. 10 Ducks 155 no - 28 77 50 16 20 44 342 L 30 41 313 255 E Ptarmigan 196 12 - 15 10 27 50 100 43 T 6 10 E Rabbits 202 502 388 Total edible Weight i n 41.0 43.62 - 37.52 36.25 35.43 30.74 29.92 36.91 45.76 33.1 24.67 48.2 54.45 59.37 'OOO's kgs 3 Fish ? ? - 14,936 15,300 4,829 1,191 13,000 9,426 10,895 ? ? ? 8,588 6,246 Total Native 218 4 Population ? ? 7 7 242 206 182 183 ? 224 197 162 o * Caribou Harvest Records are available for a l l years and are as follows: 1976/77 1977/78 1978/79 1979/80 1980/81 1981/82 1982/83 1983/84 • ? 537 900 800 558 1000 500 1000 Notes 1 +.2: Data here are from YTG Game Branch for Caribou and the f i e l d Caribou and the f i e l d for a l l others 3: Weights are from Berger, 1977:24 4: The population figures for 1966-67, 1970-71 and 1975-76 are total population figures. The 162 figure for 1983-86 represents the 162 of 220 native people interviewed. Sources: 1963 - 1973 = McSkiitrdng, 1975:92 1973/74 - 1975/76 = YTG Game Branch, Whitehorse 1978 - 1984 = F i e l d data and YTG Game Branch, Whitehorse Table 4.2 OLD CROW FISHERIES 1967 - 73, 1978, 1983 TYPE 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1978 1983 Chinook 43 38 27 8 - 81 13 70 42 Chum 11,768 10,000 3,377 620 10,000 4,570 , 5,780 6,540 3,936 Coho 261 34 25 Whitefish 1,124 2,550 734 195 - 650 870 198 328 Other* 2,001 2,451 657 368 3,000 4,100 4,232 1,780 1,940 Total 14,936 15,300 4,829 1,191 13,000 9,426 10,895 8,588 6,246 * = grayling, sucker, jackfish, hump whitefish, losch, inconnu Source: Stager 1974:67 f i e ld data 92 Returning to Table 4.1, caribou takes remained re lat ive ly stable between 1963 and the mid 1970's. After this however, there was a steady increase. Reasons for this can only be hypothesized: 1) people have now become familiar with the Game Branch's questionnaire and participate more wi l l ing ly . Hence, figures for those later years are more accurate; 2) the demographic characteristics of the community are such that now there are more adults than in previous years and therefore more meat is required annually; or 3) the occurrence of freezers in every household has increased the amount of caribou that can be stored year round, but especially after the spring hunt. Whatever the case may be, the figures represent the continued importance of caribou to the people of Old Crow, despite their increased a f f in i ty to community l i f e . Muskrat returns for a forty-f ive year period are shown in Table 4.3. The low returns that occur in certain years may ref lect the c y c l i c a l nature of the muskrat population and not reduced effort . However, as noted by Stager (1974:81) the low returns for both 1969 and 1970 were due to decreased effort resulting from employment opportunities in town on the a i r s t r i p and in connection with o i l exploration. Since 1970 there has been a trend toward lower returns, but not too s igni f icant ly . The biggest change in muskrat harvesting has been in the area of production intensity, both with respect to time spent and the number of Table 4.3 OLD CROW FUR RETURNS FOR MUSKRATS 1938 - 1984 Year Amount Year Amount Year Amount Year Amount 1938-39 30,084 1957-58 36,311 1968-69 9,461 1978-79 15,277 1939-40 19,688 - 1969-70 753 1979-80 9,489 1940-41 13,858 1960-61 21,017 1970-71 5,225 1980-81 10,499 1941-42 11,120 1961-62 12,361 1971-72 9,798 1981-82 10,852 1942-43 10,965 1962-63 17,411 1972-73 13,725 1982-83 16,470 1943-44 15,137 1963-64 14,000 1973-74 - 1983-84 11,416 1 9 4 4 - 4 5 15,920 1964-65 7,860 1974-75 19,878 1945-46 22,405 1965-66 9,688 1975-76 15,018 1946-47 18,940 1966-67 13,324 1976-77 12,728 1947-48 14,946 1967-68 11,273 1977-78 9,192 Source: B a k i k c i , 1963:93 Naysmith, 1971:21 McSkimming, 1975:95 YTG Dept of Renewable Resources, Whitehorse 94 Table 4.4 MUSKRAT CAMP PRODUCTIVITY, OLD CROW 1960 - 1983 # camps # people # people as % of native pop. MUSKRAT HARVESTING Total Per Camp Per hunter/trapper Total pelt value Avg value/camp 1960 20 23 56.6% 8,950 448 389 Unknown Unknown 1973 27 43 69.2% 13,725 508 319 $34,312.50 $ 1,270.83 1978* 25 65 32.9% 15,983 639 246 1983 20 52 23.63%! (37.1%) 12,3492 617 237 $65,370.47 $40,134.25 $ 2,614.82 $ 2,006.71 * data for 1978 + 1983 incomplete - only 76.3% of pop interviewed. Note 1: 23.63% is from total population of 220 while 37.1% is just for the adult population. i t should be noted that population figures for 1978 and 1983 include c h i l d r e n ^ 6 years who helped at camp while the 1960 + 1973 figures are just for trappers/hunters and not their families. 2: this figure and the one for 1978 are based on interview data, and therefore do not include a l l muskrats harvested. The figures also do not include those 185 muskrats harvested through trapping south of Old Crow. Source: 1960 + 1973 - McSkimming 1975 1978 + 1983 - f i e ld data fur prices - from Stat is t ics Canada Catalogue 23:207 95 hunter/trappers involved. Table 4.4 outlines muskrat camp productivity for 1960, 1973, 1978 and 1983. Although the number of camps has not changed s ignif icant ly , the percentage of the adult population part ic ipat ing in spring ratt ing has declined. This seems to be largely a function of four factors: 1) children are no longer released from school for spring ratt ing and therefore many families no longer make the t r i p to the Flats ; 2) many of the adults who would l ike to go ratt ing also hold a wage position in town. Often the cost of getting to the Flats plus the r isk of poor returns deters them from leaving their jobs for any length of time; 3) many of the young adults perceive ratt ing as hard work and not worth the monetary return one gets for one's efforts; and 4) going to the Flats has become a very expensive endeavour for many families, and one they cannot afford every year. In spite of a l l this , productivity per camp has remained re la t ive ly stable, i f not increased s l ight ly . Today most rats are shot with a .22 after break-up, rather than being trapped between March and the end of A p r i l . Less time needs to be spent using a r i f l e , returns are usually quite high and the work is a lot easier. In 1983, only one person mentioned staking rat houses for spring trapping in early January. It seems that most people go to the Flats before break-up and trap a l i t t l e because skidoo travel is easy at this time. After break-up ratt ing ac t iv i t i e s intensify. Around mid June people return from the Flats by boat or plane. The round t r i p has taken them approximately one and half months. Winter trapping, l ike hunting and fishing has been operating over shrinking space since 1960. Surprisingly however, more traplines and Table 4.5 OLD CROW FUR RETURNS 1938 - 1973, 1974 - 1984 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947 1948 1957 -39 -40 -41 -42 -43 -44 -45 -46 -47 -48 -49 -58 Marten 97 97 234 272 199 205 183 113 132 200 - 218 Mink 21 54 83 173 65 68 123 176 70 117 - 5 Beaver 21 5 36 146 94 40 50 - 2 - - 47 Lynx Fox Other Weasel Wolverine Wolf Squirrel 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 197] -61 -62 -63 -64 -65 -66 -67 -68 -69 -70 -71 -72 Marten 110 4 475 248 142 84 34 104 98 13 33 76 Mink 247 19 165 70 14 18 4 8 29 4 25 23 Beaver 48 26 13 37 19 45 98 47 13 11 13 12 Lynx 2 4 17 17 19 12 3 11 1 26 24 Fox 15 22 2 3 4 1 2 0 0 3 Otter 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 3 Weasel 159 138 38 10 46 49 30 20 3 17 Wolverine 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 Wolf 0 0 1 0 0 2 2 1 0 1 4 Squirrel 31 7 0 4 0 2 7 19 0 0 Table 4.5 (cond'd) 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 -73 -74 -75 -76 -77 -78 -79 -80 -81 -82 -83 -84 Marten 103 - 16 72 249 393 655 1,095 1,243 57 366 159 Mink 47 - 8 20 34 30 53 123 61 4 35 13 Beaver 10 - 22 27 4 1 1 24 14 2 2 1 Lynx 19 - 18 5 6 5 13 7 - 9 76 73 Fox 3 - 8 13 33 12 20 46 20 8 61 50 Otter 0 - 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 Weasel 10 - 24 21 34 17 0 47 24 0 2 4 Wolverine 0 - 5 10 12 3 8 5 1 3 2 1 Wolf 0 - 4 5 1 0 3 4 7 1 0 1 Squirrel 0 - 2 0 3 0 1 15 0 114 0 3 Source: Ba l ikc i , 1963:93 Naysmith, 1971:21 McSkimming, 1975:87-88 YTG Game Branch (Dept of Renewable Resources) 98 trappers were operating in 1978 and 1983 than in 1973. Table 4.5 l i s t s Old Crow's fur returns from 1938 on. It is d i f f i c u l t to determine how accurate the figures are for the early years, especially when one considers Stager's 1974 figure for returns from 1960 (Table 4.6). Stager's total catch was 962 while the o f f i c i a l records only indicated 405 for 1960-61 (Table 4.5). Given the number of trappers. Stager's figure is probably closer to the actual to ta l . A better indication of the amount of change that has occurred within the trapping sector is productivity. Table 4.6 c learly shows that both catch per kilometer and catch per trapper has decreased since 1960. Of note however, i s the overal l eveness of the catch per trapper between 1973, 1978 and 1983. Perhaps production levels have reached an equilibrium point. The same men trapping in the early 1970's are the same ones trapping today. Of the eighteen 1 trappers involved in the enterprise in 1983, only five were younger than 35, while ten were over 50. It seems that several of the young people are either not interested in trapping at a l l , or do not possess the s k i l l s necessary to make them highly effective on the trapl ine. If this trend continues i t is l ike ly that once the older generations stop trapping, the trapping industry in Old Crow w i l l be a thing of the past. Note 1: Although Table 4.6 states that only 13 men trapped in 1983, 18 men were actually found to be involved in the industry. However, records could only be obtained for 13. Table 4.6 PRODUCTIVITY OF TRAPPING ACTIVITIES, OLD CROW 1960 - 1983 < 1960 1973 19781 19832 # Trappers 23 7 12 13 # Trappers as 63.2% 10 .7% Unknown 9.28% % Adult Pop. # Traplines 21 6 13 16 Avg length (km) 31.25 18 .75 13.0 16.85 Catch/ Catch/ Catch/ Catch/ Catch 1960 Trapper 1973 Trapper 1978 Trapper 1983 Trapper Marten 319 13.9 103 14.7 154 12.80 196 15.10 Mink 262 11.4 47 6.7 59 4.91 19 1.46 Weasel 225 9.8 9 1.3 8 .66 6 .46 Lynx 48 2.1 19 2.7 18 1.50 52 4.00 Fox 43 1.9 4 .6 24 2.00 50 3.80 Beaver 25 1.1 10 1.4 0 0 2 .15 Wolverine 36 1.6 0 0 19 1.58 5 .38 Wolf 4 .2 0 0 5 .41 10 .76 Total 962 41.82 192 27.43 287 23.92 340 26.15 Total Catch/km3 1.34 1.46 1. 84 1 .55 Notes 1 & 2: This information is based on interview data and is therefore incomplete -see Table 4.5 for Fur Game Statistics (Official) and the total amount of fur returns - although field data had only complete records for 12 (1978) + 13 (1983) trappers i t was known that at least 19 (1978) and 18 (1983) trappers were actually involved in this enterprise. 3: This figure was derived by dividing the total catch/trapper by the average trapline length. Source: Stager 1974:55 and field data 100 Harvesting food and trapping furs from the land are not the only tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s which are s t i l l practiced in Old Crow. Woodcutting and handicrafts continue to play an important role in the household economy. The use of local logs for the heating of homes in Old Crow saves the community thousands of dollars each year. Because of Old Crow's location, home heating o i l would have to be flown in in bulk by Hercules at great expense. Based on s ta t i s t i cs from the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources i t was estimated that, to replace the cords used by the community in 1983 with heating o i l would have cost $325,607.55 (Table 4.13). Another important value of wood is the income woodcutting generates through i t s sale to either the school or the Band wood program. Of the 1,000 or so cords used during the winter of 1983/84, 600-700 cords were cut and hauled for $120.00 per cord (200 cords were for the school). This provides a substantial amount of annual income for some households. Handicrafts do not generate as much total income as woodcutting does, but for some households the sale of such products is a pr inc ipal source of income. In the summer of 1984 an Arts and Crafts Co-operative was opened in the community. This was made possible through the efforts of several women in the community who believed that an arts and crafts industry could prosper in Old Crow i f materials could be made available loca l ly , and markets could be found for the sale of finished products. This Co-operative w i l l f i l l a very important employment function in Old Crow given that wage employment opportunities for women are few. 101 The discussion thus far has established that the people of Old Crow have indeed continued to engage in almost a l l tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s , with some modifications. Game is s t i l l taken at levels similar to th ir ty or forty years ago 1 , even though time spent hunting has decreased s igni f icant ly . The autumn hunt is most important and people now possess the means to capture large quantities in a short time. Stager (1974) correctly noted that often tr ips out on the.land are for a special purpose l ike hunting caribou. This has reduced the amount of time spent on the land engaged in any one ac t i v i ty . It has also created the situation where the land i s perceived to have high u t i l i t y (Ibid:57). However, tr ips that often begin as single purpose, become multi-purpose because, as in the past, residents do not hesitate to gather wood, shoot a moose and so forth when the opportunity presents i t s e l f . Fishing ac t iv i t i e s have declined due to the replacement of dogteams by skidoos. It is not unreal ist ic to conclude that the presence of freezers in every household has also led to the decreased role of f ishing. Today, caribou from the spring hunt, as well as store bought Note 1: no harvest records exist for tradit ional times so i t is - impossible to compare to the years prior to 1930 or so. It is quite l ike ly that levels were quite similar to those of the twentieth century. 102 meat, can be s t o r e d for long p e r i o d s o f t ime ; thereby r educ ing the dependence on f i s h tha t had p r e v i o u s l y e x i s t e d d u r i n g the summer months. Nonethe less , the seventy odd dogs c u r r e n t l y found i n O l d Crow, eat p r i m a r i l y f i s h and scraps throughout the y e a r . M u s k r a t t i n g con t inues t o be c a r r i e d out a t h i s t o r i c a l l e v e l s , a l t hough the number o f people p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n any one year has become a f u n c t i o n o f the a v a i l a b i l i t y o f wage employment and/or the f i n a n c i a l p o s i t i o n o f the househo ld . S i m i l a r i l y , the number o f people p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n w i n t e r t r a p p i n g i n any g i v e n year i s determined by the same economic f a c t o r s . The s u b s t i t u t i o n o f sk idoos fo r dogteams has meant t ha t l i n e s can now be checked more e f f i c i e n t l y , thereby i n c r e a s i n g the number o f r e t u r n s per l i n e . Thus, a l though p a r t i c i p a t i o n l e v e l s have become prone t o economic change, r e t u r n s have remained r e l a t i v e l y s t a b l e over the pas t f i f t e e n y e a r s . By i m p l i c a t i o n then, i f more people began t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n t r a p p i n g , r e t u r n s would i n c r e a s e . Wood remains the major w i n t e r h e a t i n g source f o r the community. I f the consumption o f cords has decreased over the years i t i s due t o the c o n s t r u c t i o n o f more energy e f f i c i e n t hous ing and b e t t e r wood s toves , and not a d e c l i n e i n the number o f u s e r s . U n l i k e most communities i n the Northwest T e r r i t o r i e s , the presence o f ' f o r e s t e d ' areas near O ld Crow has meant t ha t homes can be b u i l t and heated u s i n g l o c a l r e s o u r c e s . F i n a l l y , h a n d i c r a f t s a re s t i l l made by the O l d Crow women. I n f a c t , i t has o n l y been r e c e n t l y t ha t pa rkas , Crow Boots and s i m i l a r i tems have 103 been sold outside the community on a regular basis . In 1963, Bal ikc i noted that several women in town would make clothing for relatives and friends for a small fee. Today this s t i l l occurs, but now v i s i tors and relatives l i v i n g elsewhere also request handicraft items. Many younger women in town possess the s k i l l s necessary to make the various items and are increasingly putting them to use in the absence of adequate female wage employment opportunities in town. The tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s that continue to play a role in Old Crow's economy have been identi f ied. Although a l l have undergone some modification, the fact that they are s t i l l practiced i s , in i t se l f , an indication of value. Obviously, as in other communities, the people of Old Crow have a "dual allegiance".! to land and town. While certain tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s have either been abandoned or become anomalous, others have been consciously preserved and even intensif ied. Hunting, f ishing, trapping and so on, have persisted because of choices made by the Old Crow people in their adaptation to forces of change operative both from within their own social system and from the outside. Note 1: dual allegiance - a term used by several researchers to describe the resistance to change as i t related to: a) l ivelihoods; town-life vs. bush-l ife (Honigmann and Honnigmann, 1965; and Fried, 1964); ' b) community social organization; the adoption of white values and social forms over tradit ional ones (Vallee, 1962); and c) the spatial extent of resource u t i l i z a t i o n ; the intensif ication of land-based ac t iv i t i e s in the resource hinterland close to town (McSkimming, 1975; and Wolforth, 1970). 104 i i ) 'Value' Assigned to Traditional Activities by the Old Crow People Research has proven that traditional activities hold considerable economic value for most northern societies (see for example: Feit, 1979; Wolfe, 1979; Nowak, 1975; Stager, 1974; Usher, 1971; and Van Stone, 1960). Much of this stems from the fact that wage employment opportunities are s t i l l not great enough in most communities to provide the sole economic base. Hence, food and other products from the land enable most northern native households to lead a modern lifestyle, with an adequate standard of living (Kruse, 1981:332). The evidence for Old Crow indicates that most households greatly depend on a diversity of income sources including; handicrafts, trapping, wage employment, and transfer payments. Added to this is the income in kind generated by the use of wood heat and country food. Table 4.7 breaks down the sources of income for 51 Old Crow households. Because a l l households utilize wood heat and country food, and most receive family allowance payments, these common 'sources' of income have not been included to prevent the negation of a l l the other income categories. Sixty-nine percent of a l l the households represented, f a l l into three categories; C,E, and F. Although "Simple Commodity Production" contributes the least amount of income to the total income of most of these households, participation in fur harvesting, handicrafts and woodcutting is s t i l l an important household activity. Table 4.7 HOUSEHOLD BY TYPE OF ECONOMIC ACTIVITY (SOURCES OF TOTAL HSHLD INCOMEJ1 A Simple Ccgrimodity Production B Wage Empl only_ C Wage Empl + Simple Commodity D Gov't only E F Gov't & Simple Commodity Other # hshlds 1 8 15 7 8 12 % of t o t a l 1.9% 15.6% 29.4% 13.7% 15.6% 23.5% Notes: 1: does not include family allowance payments A: includes: commercial fur harvesting/bead work/wood cutting & other cottage cr a f t s B: only wages from market sector C: a mixture of A & B - within t h i s group are 2 subclassif ications I: more than 50% income from wages I I : more than 50% income from simple commodity production 25.4% (13) households f a l l into I while 3.9% (2) f a l l under I I D: a l l income i s derived from gov't sources. Within t h i s group are 2 c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s I: primary source Old Age Security/CYI elders fund I I : primary source soc assistance 7.8% (4) households f a l l into I while 5.8% (3) f a l l i n t o the l a t t e r E: income i s from A&D with D being the larger contributor. 2 c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s here match those of D. In I = 13.7% (7) hshlds while i n I I 1.9% (1) hshld. F: income i s for AB&D - 3 c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s here: I mostly wages - 4 hshlds (7.8%) II mostly gov't - 7 hshlds (13.7%) I I I mostly simple commodity production - 1 hshld (1.9%) 106 Tables 4.8 and 4.9 present information on the dollar values of fur harvesting efforts in Old Crow from 1938 to 1983. Taking into account the p o s s i b i l i t y of inaccurate record keeping prior to the 1960's, and the v o l a t i l i t y of fur prices, i t s t i l l seems safe to conclude that the income being generated through fur harvesting has not declined, despite decreased participation levels. In fact, according to the summary information presented i n Table 4.10, income levels have increased over the past twenty years. It i s believed that much of this i s due to a renewed interest in trapping i n Old Crow, and the use of more ef f i c i e n t trapping methods, l i k e the snowmobile. According to the Band Office records, wages paid for the cutting of winter wood were approximately $48,000 in 1983/84. It was impossible to determine how many men received wages from this activity, but i t i s believed that for several households, this i s a major source of income during the f a l l and winter months. Similarily, income earned through the sale of handicrafts, both lo c a l l y and outside the community, i s an important contribution to the total annual income of many households, especially those headed by older women. Once again though, the actual dollar amount received by each resident for this a c t i v i t y could not be accurately identified, primarily due to poor informant r e c a l l . Based on the data collected i t has been estimated that at least $7,000.00 was generated through the sale of Old Crow handicrafts i n 1983. Table 4.8 $ VALUE OF OLD CROW FUR RETURNS 1938 - 1973, 1974 - 1983 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947 1957 1960 Species -39 -40 -41 -42 -43 -44 -45 -46 -47 -48 -58 -61 Marten 2,443 2,574 8,857 11,554 8,358 10,865 9,516 5,424 5,940 6,400 2,616 990 Mink 201 449 920 1,946 780 1,445 3,321 5,808 1,960 3,510 90 4,075 Beaver 323 89 829 3,775 3,008 1,370 2,100 - 60 - 564 600 Lynx Fox Other Weasel Wolverine Wolf Squirrel $ Total 2,967 3,112 10,606 6,875 12,146 13,680 14,937 11,232 7,960 9,910 3,270 5,665 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 Species -62 -63 -64 -65 -66 -67 -68 -69 -70 -71 -72 -73 Marten 32 4,835 2,728 1,575 1,064 306 979 867 124 460 1,368 2,266 Mink 2,432 3,452 2,100 286 240 36 75 357 25 337 276 752 Beaver 312 186 514 247 580 1,960 629 173 139 178 216 250 Lynx 26 41 204 207 636 324 94 340 24 503 1,080 1,520 Fox 148 388 13 34 42 11 23 76 105 Otter 11 10 90 Weasel Wolverine 13 17 47 90 Wolf 6 26 36 21 26 100 Squirrel 15 3 2 1 3 6 $ Total 2,802 8,677 5,943 2,341 2,573 2,705 1,835 1,784 365 1,504 3,296 4,893 Table 4.8 (cont'd) 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 Species -75 -76 -77 -78 -79 -80 -81 -82 -83 Marten 362 2,028 5,127 9,746 23,383 39,639 46,849 2,544 18,757 Mink 108 278 640 384 1,453 3,252 2,092 1,376 816 Beaver 328 373 96 16 39 874 454 41 37 Lynx 2,358 1,104 1,636 1,253 4,471 1,471 2,895 23,222 Fox 291 931 1,724 660 1,633 2,576 1,432 641 3,670 Otter 117 Weasel Wolverine 511 1,249 2,042 383 1,374 703 190 636 416 Wolf 438 434 84 365 348 623 119 Squirrel 1 2 2 25 191 $Total 4,397 6,397 11,351 12,442 32,720 48,005 51,640 8,443 46,918 Sources: B a l i k c i , 1963 YTG Renewable Resources, 1984 Stager, 1974 Stat ist ics Canada: 23-207 Table 4.9 VALUE OF OLD CROW MUSKRAT RETURNS 1938 - 1983 Year Amount Year Amount Year Amount Year Amount 1938-39 35,499.12 1957-58 26,507.03 1968-69 10,880.15 1978-79 87,995.52 1939-40 16,931.68 1969-70 640.05 1979-80 59,116.47 1940-41 28,547.48 1960-61 11,559.35 1970-71 3,553.00 1980-81 65,093.80 1941-42 21,906.40 1961-62 11,124.90 1971-72 18,616.20 1981-82 30,494.12 1942-43 24,123.00 1962-63 17,236.89 1972-73 27,450.00 1982-83 53,527.50 1943-44 28,457.56 1963-64 17,500.00 1973-74 -1944-45 35,820.00 1964-65 8,488.80 1974-75 63,212.04 1945-46 61,613.75 1965-66 13,175.68 1975-76 74,489.28 1946-47 30,304.00 1966-67 5,329.60 1976-77 63,385.44 1947-48 35,870.40 1967-68 8,454.75 1977-78 37,595.28 $ f i g u r e s from S t a t i s t i c s Canada 23-207 110 Table 4.10 $ VALUE FOR OLD CROW FUR RETURNS FOR SELECT YEARS1 (All figures in constant 1981 dollars) 2 Year Total 1981 Dollar Value 1940-413 $ 1,707.51 1944-45 $ 2,733.47 1960-61 $ 1,767.63 1965-66 $ 875.06 1970-71 $ 617.40 1975-76 $ 3,742.47 1980-81 $45,907.65 1982-83 $51,984.51 Notes 1: information derived from data presented in Table 4.8 - does not include muskrat returns 2: A l l dol lar figures were calculated based on information presented in the Consumer Price Index - Annual Averages, A p r i l 1985 (Stats Canada Catalogue 62-001) 3: for this year, 1940 CPI figure was used (see Table B-4 i n Appendix B for figure) Sources: Bal ikc i 1963 Stager 1974 YTG Game Returns + Value figures F ie ld data 1984 Stat is t ics Canada Catalogues 62-001 and 23-207 I l l If sixty-nine percent of the 51 households are re l iant on two or more sources of income, th is leaves about t h i r t y percent who re ly on one income source. It must be remembered however, that even those households deriving a l l their income from just wage employment or transfer payments, s t i l l draw income i n kind from the land through their use of country food, wood heat and so on. According to the perceptions of those interviewed, country food constitutes a large portion of a l l food eaten (Table 3.2). F i f t y - f i v e percent of the 51 households interviewed perceived that half or more of their food came from the land. Reactions to the question suggested that these perceptions more accurately described the proportion of meat consumed which came from the land, rather than the proportion of a l l household food. Nonetheless, because the Old Crow diet contains high amounts of protein, i t i s l i k e l y that country food comprises a substantial portion of food consumed. The fact that 40 of the 51 households interviewed (78%) believed that caribou or other wild meat was eaten at least once a day confirms this observation. The actual economic value of country food i s not easi ly determined, as evidenced i n the discussion on substitution costs in Chapter 3. However, the cash values generated by such an approach can help in understanding the role of food from the land in the local economy. The analysis in Chapter 3 revealed that the replacement of a l l country food consumed by 41 Old Crow households in 1983 would have cost 112 somewhere in the order of $373,000.00, or $7,700.00 per household. 1 If one were to combine the f i e l d data with YTG Game Branch records, and then try to infer a similar value for a l l Old Crow households, the to ta l value figure would work out to approximately $574,000.00, while the per household figure (70 households) would be $8,200.00 (Table 4.11). When one considers that the median household income in Old Crow i s roughly $11,500.00, expenditures on food in the order of $8,000.00 more per year would be economically impossible. /An important consideration here too i s the fact that these figures are an underestimation of country food's true 'value' because they in no way account for the more social 'values' associated with i t s harvesting. Table 4.12 presents the economic value of country food in relat ion to other income sources in Old Crow. Some th ir ty - s ix percent of a l l income generated i n Old Crow in 1983 came from the tradi t ional sector. Of t h i s , eighty-nine percent was income in kind generated through the use of country food and wood heat. Clearly tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s continue to play a significant role i n the Old Crow economy. In fact , the second set of "Total Value" figures shown in Table 4.11 seem to suggest that country food i s now even more economically significant than i n years past. It i s believed that this i s due to; a s l ight increase in population, the leve l l ing off of wage employment opportunities, and the ever increasing price of imported foods. Note 1: these figures were derived using straight substitution costs (beef for caribou e t c . ) . No other factors, such as differences i n protein content, were included. If these had been included the to ta l cost figures would have, in a l l l ikel ihood, increased (Table 3.4). Table 4.11 ESTIMATED $ FOOD VALUE FOR GAME RETURNS IN OLD CROW FOR SELECT YEARS1 Species 1963/64 . 1966/67 1969/70 1972/73 1975/76 1978/79 1983/84 Caribou $354,373.17 $297,151.44 $239,929.71 $376,960.70 $383,987.93 $451,750.50 $501,945.00 Moose 18,327.90 31,157.43 32,990.22 40,321.38 49,485.33 43,986.96 40,321.38 Bear 1,913.84 7,655.35 9,569.19 - 9,569.19 - -Geese Ducks 2,411.64 309.65 467.77 2,244.40 401.82 2,062.17 1,678.30 Ptarmigan Rabbits - - - 1,133.22 - 2,816.22 2,176.68 Fish - 38,209.75 11,746.35 23,665.94 - 59,386.93 15,352.49 Muskrats 1 7 ? ? 15,056.25 — 28,357.56 12,615.73 Total Value $377,026.55 $374,483.62 $294,703.24 $459,381.89 $443,444.27 $588,360.34 $574,089.58 Total Value 2 (1981 $) $122,910.66 $131,818.23 $116,997.19 $203,046.80 $259,414.90 $434,798.29 $672,832.99 Notes 1: A l l food $ values were derived using various harvest s ta t i s t i c s and the 1984 meat prices at the Co-op (beef, pork or chicken - see Table 3.4 for more complete breakdown). 2: These figures were derived from the Consumer Price Index Annual Averages Table where 1981 = 100 (Statist ics Canada Catalogue: 62-001). Sources: Stager, 1974; YTG Dept of Renewable Resources; Fie ld Data; Stat i s t ics Canada Catalogue: 62-001 and 23-207 (Apri l , 1985) 114 Table 4.12 INCOME CALCULATIONS FOR OLD CROW, 1983 Estimated Total Total Value 1 Average Value Value for ITEM ( f ie ld data) per hshld (51) Community (70) Wood Heat 2 $ 223 ,273 .75 $ 4 ,651 .54 $ 325 ,607 .55 (avg crds/hshld= 11.5 Country food 3 373 ,311 .58 7 ,777 .32 544 ,412 .40 Fur Harvest 71 ,260 .58 1 ,397 .26 97 ,808 .20 Handicrafts 7 ,000 .00 137 .32 9 ,607 .84 sub tota l $ 674 ,845 .91 $ 13 ,963 .37 $ 977 ,435 .99 Wages4 $ 499 ,765 .00 $ 10 ,633 .32 $ 744 ,332 .40 Trans. Payments5 169 ,682 .26 3 ,610 .26 249 ,470 .07 6 Other Gov't .23 7 contributions 530 ,692 10 ,405 .73 728 ,401 .00 to ta l $1,874,985.40 $38,612.68 $2,699,639.44 % Income from: F ie ld Data (51) Estimated Total (70) Tradit ional Sector 36% 36.2% Wages 26.6% 27.5% Government Sources 37.3% 36.2% Notes 1: F ie ld data was based on interviews with 51 households out of 70 (72.8%) 2: Wood Heat was derived from the cost of replacing 1 cord of dry spruce with heating o i l ; $403.75 (EMR, Ottawa, 1985 and W. Attwoo d, DIAND, Whitehorse) 3: Country food totals are based on 48 households and the average adjusted accordingly. 4 & 5: The same applies here as in note 3 (48 not 51 households). 6: The transfer payment to ta l here i s based on calculations for the entire community from information from Health and Welfare and i s not the extension of the average f igure. 7: The data here was derived from the average f igure, which was derived from the to ta l f igure, th is figure came from Band records. Source: f i e l d data and Health and Welfare Canada 115 An alternate way of viewing the economic value of country food is to compare the cost of hunting and so forth with the price one would have to pay to buy similar quantities of food at the local store. Table 4.13 summarizes the costs incurred by various households in Old Crow while engaged in tradit ional ac t i v i t i e s . Although only the cost of gasoline, o i l and food were used to calculate total costs, the difference is so great between the price per kilogram for local versus imported meats, that even i f fixed capital costs were included (equipment etc.) tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s would s t i l l remain more 'economical 1. A similar conclusion was reached in Chapter 3 (pg 67), when the cost of substitution versus the actual cost of hunting and fishing were shown as a proportion of total income. The discussion thus far should not be taken to suggest that the most important 'value' of tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s is the 'income' they generate. On the contrary/ the fact that a l l Old Crow households derive income from both the modern and tradit ional sectors seems to indicate that i t may be the material security found in the combination of cash and subsistence resources which is even more important. The rea l i ty that most wage employment opportunities are unpredictable, seasonal in nature, and f a i l to provide sufficient income, has perhaps been one of the major factors contributing to the Old Crow people's decision to pursue tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s at levels similar to earl ier times. As Lonner (1981) so accurately noted, "what appears to be maximized in subsistence economies is not prof i t or wealth, but security." Table 4.13 SUMMARY OF HUNTING/FISHING/TRAPPING COSTS OLD CROW, 19831 # Households Harvest Total Avg Cost/ Avg Landed Species Participating Quantity Cost Hshld Cost/Animal $ A g 2 Caribou 37 542 $10,275 $277 .70 $18 .95 $ .35 Moose 13 21 2,045 157 .313 97 .38 .49 Rabbit 13 388 500 38 .46 4 1 .29 1.89 Birds 17 255 FREE FREE 5 FREE FREE Fish 16 4,895 3,055 190 .94 .62 .56 Fur Harvests 13 340 10,645 818 .85 6 31 .38 -Muskrats 23 12,534 18,400 800 .00 7 1 .47 -$44,9208 (9.21) (9.21) (8.25) (7.24) (8.23) Notes 1: These costs are based only on gasoline, o i l and food costs incurred by individual households. Nb other production costs are represented here due to the d i f f i c u l t y in allocating the cost of a skidoo etc. whose uses are many. 2: The f i r s t figure shows the landed cost in $ A g based on animal weights (Table 3.7) while the second figure in brackets i s the price A g of the appropriate imported substitute (Table 3.4). 3: 4 households obtained moose free while engaged in some other a c t i v i t y . Therefore, cost/household does not to ta l ly ref lect the s i tuation. 4: 10 out of 13 families here got their rabbits free. However, because 1 household incurred gasoline costs of $400.00 the avg cost/household i s distorted (also the $ A g figure i s distorted). 5: A l l birds were obtained in May at the Flats or along rabbit traplines in Oct/Nov. 6: Although $818.85 was the cost/household, returns equalled $30,525.00 or $2348.08/household. Therefore, most houses gained on trapping. 7: Although $800 was the costAousehold, returns equalled $40,735.50 or $1771.12/household, therefore the net return was $971.12/household. 8: This cost would be reduced to $26,340.58 i f one were to include revenue from fur sales. Source: f i e ld data, 1984 117 The economic contribution that hunting, fishing, trapping and the l ike make to a household is just one of several 'values' the local people place on tradit ional a c t i v i t i e s . Unfortunately, accounting for the more social 'values' can be d i f f i c u l t because they are often not readily observable, and they vary from household to household and year to year. Research carried out among several of the tradit ional societies in northern Alaska has revealed that subsistence ac t iv i t i e s serve as a soc ia l ly binding force (Kruse, 1981:372). Communal hunting efforts and the sharing or trading of food, equipment and labour a l l involve social interactions between people. This fosters interdependence among households and in turn binds people together soc ia l ly . In the case of Old Crow subsistence ac t iv i t i e s do indeed create a soc ia l ly binding force. The sharing of food remains a strong custom within the community. The freezers of the o ld , the luckless or the unskil led are always amply f u l l of caribou and other wild meat, contributions from both family and friends. S imi lar i ly , at feasts large quantities of food magically appear from kitchens throughout town. Very l i t t l e has been said, rather, well-defined social rules have determined who w i l l produce what. "It i s not possible to art iculate the precise pattern of the behavior, but i t is observed and understood by the people of Old Crow" (Stager, 1974:133). Both the sharing of food and feasts continue to f u l f i l l an important community need. The social products generated by these ac t iv i t i e s help 118 reinforce community so l idar i ty at a time when modern transportation and communications, the increased a v a i l a b i l i t y of cash and l iquor, and an increase in alcohol related crimes serves to undermine the quality of l i f e in Old Crow. The sharing of food s t i l l gives many a sense of self worth, helps pay off debts or obligations, and can bu i ld , renew or maintain relationships. Feasts, especially those associated with funerals or a Christ ian feast day, are one of the few occasions when the whole town gathers together and celebrates as a community. Food, conversation, and opinions are exchanged as i n the old days. Many people seem to gain renewed hope that Old Crow i s indeed a "nice place". Getting out on the land and away from town, even for a day, i s another very important benefit associated with tradi t ional pursuits . This i s no better observed than during spring rat t ing . People l ike to get out on the land and enjoy the warmer days of spring after a long, cold, community-bound winter. One informant stated that spring ratt ing brought out the best in people; "they don't drink or anything, they just work real hard". A similar occurrence was observed during the f a l l caribou hunt. When people went out on the land, they worked. Drinking was reserved for the id l e hours spent in town. It seemed that for many people getting away from town represented a chance to retreat from the i r r i t a t i o n s often associated with small-town l i v i n g . Ratting, hunting and fishing offer another very important benefit. Family t r ips out onto the land serve the purpose of teaching children the 119 basic s k i l l s necessary to successfully carry out various tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . While changes i n technology and material needs have reduced the number of tradi t ional s k i l l s and attitudes currently being practiced, and by implication, taught in Old Crow, there i s s t i l l the effort being made to instruct a l l chi ldren. Cultural programs are offered throughout the year which teach children trapping, beadwork, f ishing and Kutchin culture (including the Loucheux d ia lec t ) . Whether this effort w i l l lead to the continuation of Old Crow's tradi t ional economy, however modified, w i l l depend on a wide variety of factors including, the range of l i f e s t y l e choices available to these children as young adults. There are other social benefits or 'values' associated with tradi t ional pursuits . Unfortunately, accounting for such things as the cultural 'need' to eat caribou, or the psychological satisfaction gained from a successful hunt cannot easi ly be accomplished when one i s not a member of the cultural group. In most of these cases the researcher may only be able to acknowledge that they, in a l l l ike l ihood, exist . Fortunately in the case of Old Crow, several informants both male and female, readi ly admitted that they received personal benefits from hunting, f ishing and trapping. Such benefits were best explained by those part-time trappers who held year-round wage positions i n town. Being able to successfully operate a trapl ine from town, relaxing, putting to use learned s k i l l s , and being able to get on the land, were the more popular benefits c i ted . With most of the households involved having re la t ive ly moderate to high incomes, i t i s quite probable that 120 part-time trapping was indeed pursued primarily for these non-economic benefits. This conclusion seems to be further supported by the fact that the average net return for the twelve part-time trappers interviewed was only $560.00 for the entire 1983 trapping season (November-March)1. It i s obvious that only a l imited amount of substantive data can be brought to bear on the question of what i s the social 'value'(s) of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s to native people. The information gathered i n Old Crow suggests that the tradi t ional sector i s very important in maintaining community so l idar i ty at a time when cu l tura l , soc ia l and economic changes abound. Addit ional ly , there are numerous other benefits l ike material security, the social izat ion of children, and a person's general well-being. These are important to the Old Crow people and are the rewards of l i v i n g a l i f e close to the land. i i i ) The Social Relations of Production In Old Crow The th ird and f i n a l category of data required to help determine native attitudes and perceptions toward the land deals with the Note 1: The figure $560.00 was derived from known production costs and fur returns for the part-time trappers interviewed. Because several trappers could only estimate both their costs and the value of their returns, the figure should be viewed as an approximation. Where need be, the 1983 Average Raw Fur Price was used to derive the value of fur returns. The trapping season runs from November to March i n Old Crow. While some part-time trappers did not trap a l l season, none worked less than 100 hours. Most commuted on weekends throughout the season. 121 ident i f icat ion of the 'values', bel iefs and social forms existent within a group that play a formative role in structuring the processes of productive ac t iv i ty . Both Canadian and Alaskan researchers have been more f r u i t f u l in their analyses of modern native hunting societies when they have explained the maintenance of the tradi t ional sector of the economy in terms of the social relations of production. Producing for use rather than exchange value, engaging only in seasonal wage employment, d is tr ibut ing products according to soc ia l ly defined rules , and using a barter rather than cash system, have a l l been identif ied as strategies (social forms) created by native people to ensure the maintenance of the tradi t ional sector (See for example: F e i t , 1983; Kruse, 1981; Wolfe, 1979; Usher, 1973; or Van Stone, 1960). The evidence for Old Crow presented thus far proves that certain tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s have remained central to the native way of l i f e , despite the increased presence of the market system. The distr ibut ion of food, community feasts, cul tural programs for children, f inancial aid for elders wishing to go rat t ing in spring, and community meetings are just a few of the social arrangements created by the people themselves in an effort to preserve their relationship with the land and i t s bounty. This i s not to say that the relationship has not changed over the years. While harvest levels for some animal species have remained at levels s imilar to 25 years ago other species l ike ; squ irre l , d a l l sheep and gr izz ly bear, are rarely eaten. Changes in harvests and harvesting patterns are two of the by-products of overal l social change i n Old Crow. Increased wage employment opportunities, high production costs, a 122 wider selection of imported foods, the i n s t a b i l i t y of fur prices , and changes i n technology have a l l acted s ingly, or in combination, to a l ter native harvesting a c t i v i t i e s . Those engaged in wage employment often do not have the time to travel great distances or stay out on the land in order to acquire games or furs . Lower income households often cannot afford to make expensive t r ips far away from town, especially i f the probabil i ty of a f a i r return i s perceived as being low. 1 The advent of the snowmobile has decreased the need for dogs, and by implication, large quantities of f i s h . Conversely, freezers have increased the average household's capacity to store meat, thus more game can be taken at one time. What has been occurring in effect then, i s a contraction of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s to those deemed most central and necessary to the maintenance of the Old Crow people's cul tural identity and economic well being. While some ac t iv i t i e s are no longer practiced, a small core have been intensif ied and w i l l l i k e l y remain in this position as long as the community i s peripheral to the modern industr ia l sector. Note 1: There are two very good examples i n Old Crow where th is rat ional izat ion occurs. 1) Moose are not widely available in the northern Yukon. One must travel 150-250 km away from town in order to be assured of capturing a moose. The effort and expense involved i s often enough to deter most people from setting out spec i f i ca l ly to hunt moose. 2) This example involves trapping on a ful l - t ime basis . Few men possess the s k i l l s necessary to make a winter out trapping highly prosperous. Going further, few people want to spend the long winter l i v i n g out on the land when they cannot be assured of a good return. 123 Changes to tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s have also brought change to the people themselves. Table 4.14 presents information on the tradit ional s k i l l s of Old Crow adults in 1973 and 1984. The two years are d i f f i c u l t to compare because 1973 had a smaller sample and quite a number of "no response" to the questions asked. It is interesting to note however, that of the 16 items, more had respondents saying "no" to the s k i l l than "yes" for both years. It is obvious that the s k i l l s which continue to be practiced are ones that relate to the small core of tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s that remain central to the native economy.1 These s k i l l s have either not been easi ly replaced by imported technology/products, or have been consciously preserved for cultural reasons. It is important to note that i t was found in both 1973 and 1984 that i t was primarily the younger residents, especially females, who did not possess the tradit ional s k i l l s l i s t ed . What this means for the future is unpredictable at this time. Real i s t i ca l ly speaking however, i t would be wrong to expect the Old Crow people to preserve a l l the material culture and s k i l l s associated with tradit ional times; especially given the increased influence the market system is having. Note 1: It is important to note that the 1984 figures for "items made" •' i s rea l ly the figure for the number of items made between 1981 and 1984. Viewed in this way, levels for any one year are probably quite comparable to the 1973 figures. 124 Table 4.14 TRADITIONAL SKILLS IN OLD CROW, 1973 AND 19841 YES NO NO RESPONSE ITEMS MADE2 1973 1984 1973 1984 1973 1984 1973 1984 Toboggan 27 36 28 35 10 4 6 27 Dog Whip 11 17 41 54 13 4 3 3 Dog Harness 37 46 19 25 9 4 15 143 Snowshoes 10 13 45 58 10 4 3 4 Rat Canoe 24 37 31 34 10 4 11 8 Rabbit Blanket 5 7 45 64 15 4 1 1 River Boat 14 31 35 40 16 4 3 17 Canvas Scow 30 34 24 37 11 4 11 2 Log Cabin 27 33 26 38 12 4 5 18 Dog Packs 21 31 32 40 12 4 4 7 Babiche 19 27 32 44 14 4 7 12 Tan Hides 14 25 37 46 14 4 9 14 Sew Boats 30 9 21 62 14 4 18 1 Dry Meat 37 63 15 8 13 4 21 61 Bone Grease 19 46 32 25 14 4 8 37 Pemican 22 48 29 23 14 4 12 44 1973 N = 65 respondents 1984 N = 75 respondents Notes 1: A l l interviewees were asked i f they had the s k i l l to make the above and i f they had made the item in 1973 or between 1981 and 1984. 2: Items made for 1984 are rea l ly a cumulative figure from 1981-1984. People were asked what they had made in the past three years. 3: It i s doubtful that 14 harnesses made, as most people used store bought ones. Source: Stager, 1974:116 f i e l d data 1984 125 Modern technology has provided most native hunters and trappers with the a b i l i t y to obtain resources i n adequate quantities with less s k i l l s and with a shorter time commitment. While some might interpret this as a declining interest in tradi t ional pursuits , for the people themselves i t represents the conscious preservation of those ac t iv i t i e s important to the ir cul tural ident i ty . They have effect ively managed to integrate the tradi t iona l with the modern industr ia l sector. < In connection with th is preservation are a number of social forms which help maintain the central importance of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in Old Crow. At the community level exist such things as; the distr ibut ion of food to those unable to hunt, community feasts to celebrate various events, and community chastisement for poor stewardship with respect to the land and i t s resources. 1 These have been in place for years and are unlikely to be altered i n the foreseeable future. At the household level numerous socia l relations of production have been created. Because of the lack of economic uniformity, these d i f f er from household to household as individuals pursue tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s for different reasons and using different strategies. Note 1: In recent years community members who have been found gui l ty of overharvesting or poor conduct on the land, have been either sent out on the land to l i v e for a period of time; or assigned ' work within the community helping elders and so on. Similar sentences are now being given to younger residents i n town found gui l ty of i l l e g a l ac t iv i t i e s l ike assult . It i s the contention of both the Yukon Court System and the community i t s e l f , that community service or banishment to the bush may be more constructive and beneficial to the offender and the community than serving time in the Whitehorse j a i l . How effective these efforts have or w i l l be, remains to be seen. 126 For most Old Crow households production strategies were careful ly thought out and were based on such things as; income l eve l , family membership, and kinship t i e s . It was noticed for instance, that i n those households where the pr inc ipal hunter was also engaged i n ful l - t ime wage employment, income was often used to invest in e f f ic ient , less demanding subsistence technology. In this way the hunter was able to offset the reduced amount of time he actually had available to get out on the land. This was best observed i n the weekend ac t iv i t i e s of these trappers who also worked fu l l - t ime. Fortunately for the residents of Old Crow, the abundance of resources re la t ive ly close to town and the lack of competition from another community, has served i n helping land-based ac t iv i t i e s complement rather than confl ict with wage employment. Another strategy employed by individual households, or between households, was the d iv i s ion of labour. Labour for the production of food from the land or the trapping of furs was quite often pooled among households or among members of one household i n order to take advantage of production opportunities without foregoing wage income. In some households i t was the unemployed son who was responsible for providing food. In others, those members who could afford to take the time off work, or who worked shi f t work, went out on the land when i t was known that caribou and so on were available. Often products were obtained for other households at th is time i n exchange for gas, or in return for a previous hunting favour shown. Usually the households involved were related in some way. 127 Maintaining a summer f i sh camp was another way many households kept in contact with a more tradi t ional way of l i f e . With the warm days of summer, and town just a few miles away, l i v ing out on the land was quite relaxing. People used this time to; take refuge from town, teach children some tradi t iona l s k i l l s , gather wood, f i sh for food, and hunt a l i t t l e . It was discovered that most of the households involved in this ac t iv i ty were not participants in any form of wage ac t iv i ty i n town at the time. Going further, many camps involved members of more than one household. This was often done for companionship as well as the pooling of equipment and labour. Those who held wage positions also fished, but did so from town. This was greatly fac i l i ta ted by the twenty-four hours of daylight experienced during the summer months. A similar pooling of household labour and ecjuipment characterized many spring ratt ing camps. For many families a t r i p to the Flats represented an expensive undertaking, especial ly i f the pr inc ipal wage earner had to leave his job. Hence, i t was quite commonplace to find representatives from various related households combining resources at one camp, leaving the wage earners in town. Thus, not only was income s t i l l being earned in town, but at the Flats as wel l . Those family members holding wage positions usually v i s i t ed the Flats near the end of the season and then brought everyone back by boat. It i s interesting to note that although Crow Flats i s registered as a group trapping sector, the lakes and camps associated with families for generations are s t i l l 128 perceived as being "owned" by that fami ly . 1 Perhaps this i s just one more way the community maintains i t s cul tural identity. Direct ly connected with the social relations of production are the 'values' and beliefs a group holds towards local resources. Both Canadian and Alaskan researchers have found that i t i s often because of the persistence of certain 'values' and bel iefs that modern productive ac t iv i ty s t i l l occurs (Usher, 1981). 'Values' range from economic and nutr i t ional to social and psychological, depending on both personal and household characterist ics . People's perceptions of 'value' have been influenced by such things as age, income, family membership and s k i l l l eve l . Furthermore, the number of ac t iv i t i e s a household chooses to pursue, as well as the effort to be exerted, represents the combination of a variety of considerations: 1) the economic costs of productive ac t iv i ty ; 2) the returns anticipated; 3) the 'value' that production holds; and 4) the time involved. Note 1: When interviewees were asked to show where their ratt ing camps , had been located reference was made frequently to a group of lakes being "my lakes". 129 These elements were examined in the preceeding sections. What was not mentioned ear l i er , but which i s equally important to understanding the tradi t ional sector, i s how the significance of a resource can change in response to alterations in income levels , household composition, production costs, age and so on. These can d irec t ly affect the social relations of production, and by implication, the 'value' a resource holds at a part icular point in time. A good example here i s the decision by a wage-earning son to take up employment in another town. This can greatly affect the annual income level of the household concerned. Suddenly, facing a decrease i n household income, the harvesting of country food may become more of an economic necessity than i t was in previous years. This in no way means that the other 'values' commonly associated with harvesting no longer exist for the remaining members of the household. Rather, the economic value of production has merely taken on a more prominant position than i t did previously. It i s rare that the other 'values' connected with production w i l l disappear. Instead, they w i l l continue to exist , some more v i s i b l e than others, and may at a later date increase i n importance in response to some other change. Given th i s , i t i s c r i t i c a l that valuation researchers try and identify the range of 'values' that exist for a cul tural group in connection with the ir productive a c t i v i t i e s . Because 'values', and their levels of significance, fluctuate over time and between households, 130 concentrating on the place of one particular 'value' at one particular point in time, would bias the research results . If a 'value' has remained in tact with the passage of time for one, or a group of individuals, i t is obviously important. In the previous pages the native attitudes and perceptions toward the land that are operative in Old Crow have been identi f ied. It has become evident that numerous 'values' exist in connection with resource use in the community. These different 'values' have arisen over time from differences in such things as: age, income levels, and l i f e experiences. Clearly, dividing both the h i s t o r i c a l and recent data collected on Old Crow into the three caterogies 1 outlined at the outset has greatly fac i l i ta ted in the identif icat ion of 'values'. However, one task remains, identifying 'values' in the absence of a re l iable and comprehensive h i s tor i ca l record. Note 1: br i e f ly : 1) the tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s a group has chosen to preserve; 2) the 'value' assigned these ac t iv i t i e s by the people; and 3) the social relations of production which affect the 'value' assigned over time. 131 Valuation In The Absence Of A His tor ica l Record In order to track the attitudes, perceptions and ac t iv i t i e s of a group over time so that 'values' can be identif ied the researcher s t i l l has a variety of methods at his disposal. Valuing renewable resources need not be confined to col lect ing data pertaining only to the quantifiable elements of production a c t i v i t i e s . Rather, processes of socio-economic change can be inferred and included in valuation research by comparing such things as: the ac t iv i t i e s of different aged informants; the patterns of time spent engaged in subsistence ac t iv i t i e s ; production ac t iv i t i e s of two communities at roughly the same stage of economic development; or the differences between employed and unemployed native residents. These and other techniques have been used by Alaskan researchers in recent years, and have produced some interesting and valuable results . 1. Comparing Act iv i t i e s of Different Aged Informants Table 4.15 presents data by age group on the number of Old Crow households which participated i n hunting, trapping and fishing during 1983. In two of the three cases, trapping and f ishing, more young households did not participate compared to the medium and old households. In the th ird case, hunting, although 82% of a l l young households participated, most of the effort was concentrated on harvesting just caribou. Going further, i t i s interesting to note that Table 4.15 A. HUNTING ACTIVITIES IN OLD CROW - 19831 % OF TOTAL INTERVIEW POPULATION WHICH PARTICIPATED (51 HOUSEHOLDS) % That did not Age Caribou Moose Rabbit Muskrat Birds participate at a l l Young 29 (82)* 4 (12) 4 (12) 4 (12) 6 (18) 6 (18) Medium 27 (88) 10 (31) 10 (31) 12 (44) 12 (44) 4 (12) Old 20 (55) 12 (33) 12 (33) 14 (39) 14 (39) 12 (33) * The numbers in brackets represents the % of the to ta l Age Group population which participated **************************************************** % OF CATCH CAUGHT BY THOSE HOUSEHOLDS PARTICIPATING Age Caribou Moose Rabbit Muskrat Birds Young 38 18 39 3 51 Medium 33 46 12 48 26 Old 29 36 49 49 23 100 100 100 100 100 Note 1: Household Breakdown - 17 Young/16 Medium/18 Old Table 4.15 (cont'd) B. TRAPPING ACTIVITIES IN OLD CROW - 19832 % OF TOTAL INTERVIEW POPULATION WHICH PARTICIPATED (50 HOUSEHOLDS) Age Young Medium Old Muskrat 2 (6) 8 ( 2 5 ) 4 6 (17) Other Furbearers 3 2 (6) 16 (50) 12 (33) % That d i d not p a r t i c i p a t e at a l l 28 (94) 12 (38) 24 (66) *******************************^ % OF CATCH CAUGHT BY THOSE HOUSEHOLDS PARTICIPATING5 Age Muskrat Beaver Marten Weasel Mink Lynx Fox Wolverine Other Young 39 0 3 0 26 0 18 0 0 Medium 34 0 21 0 32 71 58 40 90 Old 27 100 76 100 42 29 24 60 10 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 100 Note 2: Household breakdown - 16 Young/16 Medium/18 Old 3: This i s a combination figure for a l l furbearers based on the interview data 4: % Figures here do not add up to 100 because some people who trapped r a t s d i d not trap other furbearers and vice versa. 5: Harvest figures used here were taken from interview data and therefore included furs not so l d . The figures used are not the same ones that appear i n Table 4.5. Table 4.15 (cond'd) C. FISHING ACTIVITIES IN OLD CROW - 19836 % OF TOTAL INTERVIEW POPULATION WHICH PARTICIPATED (50 HOUSEHOLDS) Age Young Medium Old Chum Salmon 10 (29) 14 (44) 14 (41) King Salmon 4 (12) 4 (13) 4 (12) % That did not Whitefish Other participate at a l l 0 4 (12) 24 (71) 4 (13) 12 (38) 16 (50) 8 (24) 12 (35) 20 (59) ************************************************ % OF TOTAL CATCH BY THOSE HOUSEHOLDS PARTICIPATING Age Chum Salmon King Salmon Whitefish Other Young 4 14 0 8 Medium 62 53 19 45 Old 34 33 81 47 100 100 100 100 Note 6: Household Breakdown - 17 Young/16 Medium/17 Old 135 overal l partic ipation by a l l three age groups was high for hunting, and much lower for both f ishing and trapping. This indicates that more emphasis i s placed by the community on hunting than on f ishing or trapping. This i s not unreasonable given the high cost of imported foods in Old Crow, the replacement of dogs with skidoos, and the steady decline of the fur industry in Canada. The lower part ic ipation rates by younger households for a l l three ac t iv i t i e s i s not eas i ly explained. In a l l l ikelihood a wide variety of factors contribute to the low figures shown; for example, wage employment, lack of s k i l l s , lack of interest , no family to support, or no dogs to feed. In terms of wage employment, figures for the community (Table B-5) indicate that 100% of a l l males in both the young and medium age categories were employed at some time during 1983; 80% of them for more than three months. Thus, employment probably infringed on the production ac t iv i t i e s of medium aged males just as much as i t would for young males 1 . Given the nature of employment in Old Crow, very few long-term jobs, i t i s unlikely that wage employment even factored into most peoples' decision to engage in hunting, f ishing or trapping. Note 1:' We are only considering males here because the part ic ipation rates by both young and medium female households were quite low: Hunting Trapping Fishing Young 50% (2)* 0% 0% Medium 60% (3) 0% 40% (2) * # of households represented by the % figure 136 Participant observation revealed that i t was such things as; lack of s k i l l s , no family responsibi l i t ies , and no need for additional income, which affected most young males' decision not to participate i n hunting, trapping or f i shing, rather than a preoccupation with wage employment. It i s interesting however, that young households exhibited high rates of productivity in those ac t iv i t i e s in which they did part ic ipate . The reason for this i s easi ly explained. Today in Old Crow there are some young residents who enjoy trapping and f ishing and who are also responsible for providing country food for more than themselves and/or their immediate family. It i s the ac t iv i t i e s of these residents which have influenced the f i n a l productivity figures shown. For the most part however, i t seems that the medium and old aged residents are the ones who maintain an interest in tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s for reasons other than economic necessity. Perhaps this i s due to the fact that they remember past times when tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s formed the basis of community economic l i f e . They have also been exposed to fewer conditions in the ir l ifetime which force an individual to choose between wage and subsistence a c t i v i t i e s . Whether younger residents w i l l f a l l into a similar l i f e s ty l e as they assume more family responsibi l i t ies and sett le permanently in town, i s unknown. For the time being though, i t i s obvious from the part ic ipation rates shown that caribou remains highly valuable to a l l residents. Other products from the land are 'valued' by various individuals with the overal l interest in a more tradi t ional l i f e s t y l e increasing as one moves from younger to older residents. Any declining interest among older residents i s the result of the physical aging process and not a lack of interest . 137 2. Patterns Of Time Spent Engaging In Subsistence Ac t iv i t i e s Kruse's study of the North Slope Inupiats (1981) concluded that current subsistence ac t iv i ty patterns reflected the dependency on time-saving subsistence technology and the presence of employment opportunities. The data for Old Crow lends i t s e l f to a s imilar conclusion. Twenty percent of a l l subsistence ac t iv i t i e s in Old Crow were performed on weekends or after work (Table 4.16). Another 29.7% were carried out over a few days, usually on vacation or leave time. Most of the residents f a l l i n g into these two categories held wage positions in town. This fact i s reflected i n the large percentage of trapping that was carried out on weekends or after work (64.3%). Most Old Crow trappers held wage positions and therefore arranged their l ines so that they could be checked every 5-6 days or so. Time patterns varied by ac t iv i ty . Spring ratt ing seemed to consume most people's time during the 1-3 months they engaged in the ac t iv i ty . Fishing also took up a lot of people's time, but most of the residents who did f i sh for 1-3 months were older, female or unemployed. Those involved in wage ac t iv i t i e s fished on weekends or after work, especially during the f a l l . From the interviews, there did not appear to be a conf l ict between subsistence and employment opportunities. Fortunately, most resources are located within a days travel time from town which fac i l i ta tes the a b i l i t y of those engaged i n ful l - t ime employment to access resources Table 4.16 PATTERNS OF TIME SPENT ON SUBSISTENCE ACTIVITIES OLD CROW, 1983 (% of to ta l act iv i t ies ) Subsistence A l l Year Wkds/ Nov - 1 wk 1 - Total Act iv i ty off and on After Work Mar 1 wk 2 wk 2 wk 3 mos Hshld Spring caribou 6.6 — 8 13.3 15 F a l l caribou - 13.8 - 58.6 24.1 3.4 - 29 Other caribou 37.5 - - 50 12.5 - - 8 Fishing summer - 26.6 — — 20 — 53.3 15 Fishing f a l l — 90 — 10 — - - 10 Moose - 13.3 — 53.3 26.6 6.6 — 15 Rabbit - - 7.1 14.3 7.1 7.1 64.3 14 Birds (spring) - 6.6 - 33.3 6.6 - 53.3 15 Birds (other) — — 50 — — - 50 2 Ratting (flats) - - - — 31.25 — 68.75 16 Ratting (other) - 33.3 - - 33.3 33.3 - 3 Trapping — 64.3 7.1 — — 21.4 7.1 14 Handicrafts 77.7 22.2 - - - - - 9 Totals 6% 20% 1.8% 29.7% 13.9% 4.2% 24.2% 165 Source: f i e l d data, modelled after Kruse 1981. 139 after work. The long periods of daylight throughout the simmer are an added benefit especially because i t i s during this time of year that employment opportunities i n town are greatest. From the data presented i t i s obvious that Old Crow residents make time to engage in subsistence a c t i v i t i e s . It i s l i k e l y that much of this i s due to the time-saving technology currently available to the modern hunter/trapper. 3. Production Ac t iv i t i e s i n Old Crow vs those i n Ross River The purpose of this entire f i n a l section i s to show how the values associated with renewable resources or the "traditional l i fes ty le" can be identif ied in the absence of a h i s tor i ca l record. Where such circumstances exist i t seems appropriate to track change using cross-sectional analysis . Such an analysis re l i e s on variations present in a population at a single point in time (Kruse, 1981:318). Thus far , this type of analysis has revealed that variations i n ac t iv i t i e s do exist between different generations in Old Crow, while time saving technology has allowed a l l residents to pursue hunting, trapping and fishing with minimal conf l ic ts . A th ird method of identifying change, and by implication what i s s t i l l 'valued 1 , i s to compare the ac t iv i t i e s of two populations at one part icular point in time. While any measures of the 'value' of subsistence ac t iv i ty proposed here are subject to error because they do not capture the absolute differences i n ac t iv i ty , i t i s contended that comparing communities or groups can s t i l l r e l iab ly test for re lat ive differences in subsistence a c t i v i t i e s . These re lat ive differences in turn can be important indicators of 'value'. 140 In 1982 the Ross River Indian Band, Yukon, hired a consultant to examine the subsistence and wage ac t iv i t i e s of the Ross River residents in an effort to document the importance of both the tradi t ional and modern sectors of the community, as well as identify people's aspirations for the future. Much of the data collected corresponded with the 1984 Old Crow data. Although the Ross River data covered 1982 and the Old Crow data 1983, the data sets are s t i l l comparable because very l i t t l e change occurred i n Old Crow between 1982 and 1983. 1 The only major difference between the two communities i s that Ross River i s located on a highway and i s near new mining ac t iv i ty . Conversely, Old Crow remains isolated both economically and geographically. Table 4.17 shows the to ta l estimated value of the domestic sector in the economies of both communities. Table 4.18 theoretical ly extends this value to cover the entire native population and examines the contribution the domestic sector makes to the to ta l annual cash income of each community. From the two tables i t i s apparent that country food contributes a large percentage of the to ta l value of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in both communities. In Ross River, fur sales are another very important source of cash income. This stems from the fact that Ross River residents are far more active trappers than Old Crow residents. Surprisingly, wages comprise a larger percentage of to ta l income in Old Crow than they do i n Ross River, even though Ross River i s located quite Note 1: change here i s meant to include changes in employment opportunities, tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s etc. 141 Table 4.17 TOTAL ESTIMATED VALUE OF THE DOMESTIC SECTOR OF THE ECONOMY OLD CROW VS ROSS RTVER1 OLD CROW ROSS RIVER % of Pop 73.6 90 represented ITEM WEIGHT (KG) TOTAL VALUE ($) WEIGHT (KG) TOTAL VALUE ($) Game2 37,573.65 345,343.36 46,236.82 344,669.465 Fur Mammals3 1,529.18 12,615.73 1,560.91 11,572.58 F i s h 4 1,865.43 15,352.49 15,190.45' 59,820.01 Sub to ta l : 40,968.26 373,311.58 62,988.18 416,062.05 Fur Sales 71,260.58 211,786.00 Handicrafts 7,000.00 10,866.00 Total : 451,572.166 680,320.00 Notes 1: Data i s from 1983 for Old Crow and 1982 for Ross River 2: Game includes -Fur mammals include: Old Crow caribou/moose rabbit /birds muskrats 4: Fish dog salnx>n/king salmon include: whitefish/grayling/losch sucker/jackfish/inconnu Ross River caribou/moose/sheep bears/waterfowl beaver/lynx/rabbits/porcupine gophers/groundhogs/grouse & ptarmigan trout/whitef i sh/salmon grayling/jackfish/sucker lingcod the dol lar values used for substitution costs are l i s t ed in Table 3.4 for Old Crow and Table B-5 for Ross River. This to ta l value i s not the to ta l imputed value for the Old Crow-tradi t ional sector because wood heat i s not included. This was because wood heat was not included in the Ross River data. Also, this figure i s less than the figure shown in Table 4.18 because i t i s for 73.6% of the population and not 100%. Source: F ie ld data, 1984 Dimitrov & Weinstein, 1984:180 142 Table 4.18 ESTIMATED TOTAL INCOME - OLD CROW VS ROSS RIVER1 (a l l sources) ITEM Tradit ional A c t i v i t i e s 3 Wages4 Transfer Payments5 Family Allowance Federal Pension CYI Elders Social Assistance Total % Income From -Tradit ional Act iv Wages Transfer Payments OLD CROW (220) 2 651,828.40 744,332.40 22,416.43 64,403.43 61,513.92 101,136.00 $1,645,630.90 39.6% 45.2% 15.1% ROSS RIVER (243) 680,320.00 602,879.00 33,612.00 36,000.00 42,408.00 124,116.00 $1,519,335.00 44.7 % 39.68% 15.54% Notes 1: data for Old Crow was taken from Table 4.12 and i s the derived value for the entire community (100%), rather than just the f i e l d data. Ross River data i s from Dimitrov & Weinstein, 1984 and i s also derived from the actual f i e ld data. 2: the numbers in brackets represent the tota l native population. 3: Traditional Ac t iv i t i e s for Old Crow do not include the value of wood heat. 4: The wage figures don't include money derived from pensions as this data i s confidential . 5: Transfer payments here are incomplete. Not included here are UIC, Child Tax Credits , YTG supplement and Guardians Allowance. These would add $142,140.00 to the Ross River f igure. It i s unknown how much would be added to the Old Crow figure. 143 close to mining and tourist ac t iv i ty (see Figure 4.7). Calculations reveal that the average to ta l wage per household figures for Old Crow and Ross River are quite comparable; $10,633.32 and $10,394.47 respectively. However, because there are 70 households in Old Crow and only 58 in Ross River, to ta l income in Old Crow i s actually higher than indicated. Last ly , transfer payments only make up about 15% of to ta l income in both communities. In terms of wage employment, 47 of the 76 people interviewed 1 in Old Crow held wage positions during 1983, 7 of them outside the community2 (see Table 4.19). Twenty-six of the 47 positions were ful l - t ime with the rest being part-time or seasonal in nature. Conversely, i n Ross River 78 jobs were available to residents of which only 13 were fu l l - t ime. The rest were part-time averaging 2 1/2 months in duration. In both communities unlike male workers, the majority of females who were employed held ful l - t ime positions. Going further, the Band and YTG were the largest employers i n both Old Crow and Ross River. Surprisingly only 2 people in Ross River were employed by the local mining companies. Note 1: of the 76 people interviewed 19 were too old to qualify for work and therefore, only 10 people were actually unemployed. A l l of these were females, many who were not act ively seeking work because of small children at home. Note 2'. ~ 5 people commuted to the Beaufort Sea Region for 2 week shift periods. 3 of the 5 were employed a l l year while the remaining 2 worked 5 months each. The remaining 2 of the 7 people worked elsewhere in Yukon fu l l - t ime. 145 Table 4.19 EMPLOYMENT DATA FOR OLD CROW (1983) AND ROSS RIVER (1982) DURATION OF FJ^LOYMENT NUMBER OF JOBS Old Crow Ross River M F M F 1 month or less 4 2 19 2 2 - 3 months 2 0 19 3 4 - 9 months 10 3 20 2 1 0 - 1 2 months 15 11 3 10 31 16 61 17 TYPES OF EMPLOYERS NUMBER OF JOBS PERCENT OF JOBS Old Crow Ross River Old Crow Ross R Community Indian Band 18 39 38% 50% Government (YTG or Federal) 14 18 30% 23% Local Native Business 4 4 9% 5% Local Non-Native Business 3 6 6% 8% Church 0 2 0% 3% Mining Companies 0 2 0% 3% O i l and Gas Industry 7 0 15% 0% CYI and other non-profit inst i tutions 1 2 2% 3% Outfitters 0 5 0% 6% 47 78 100% 100% Source: F ie ld data Dimitrov and Weinstein 1984 146 From the work by Dimitrov and Weinstein i t i s quite clear that Ross River residents are hesitant to take wage positions outside the ccmnunity. Most residents want wage employment in town which i s compatible to the community's seasonal round, thereby allowing them to get out on the land (Dimitrov and Weinstein, 1984:233-254). The amount of community "income" derived from fur sales and other tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s seems to indicate the importance of the land to the Ross River people (Table 4.17). While there i s no denying that the land holds a similar place in the l ives of the people of Old Crow, i t was found that residents of Old Crow were more w i l l ing to travel outside for employment. Of 50 people interviewed 1 , 32 had worked outside the community at some point in time. Twenty-six of the 50 people stated that they would be wi l l ing to take employment outside i f i t was both necessary and available. Given Old Crow's i so lat ion the people real ize that there i s l i t t l e chance that in-town employment opportunities w i l l increase in the future. As such they are more wi l l ing to travel to employment, although most indicated a preference for shift work so that they would not have to move their families from the community permanently. Note 1: only 50 of the 76 people responded to the question regarding outside employment, of the 26 who did not respond, 19 were old age pensioners while 7 were not interested in employment at a l l . 147 In Ross River, there exists the potential for much economic growth loca l ly because of increased mining ac t iv i t i e s and the upgrading of the North Canol Road. Realizing th i s , the Ross River people have stated that they want to be given the chance to take advantage of business opportunities as they present themselves (Ibid:248-254). Unfortunately because many of the Ross River residents s t i l l lack the s k i l l s and i n i t i a t i v e needed to rea l ly take advantage of such opportunities, few native residents have benefitted from the economic development to da te . 1 There are several other comparisons that could be made between Old Crow and Ross River; the proportion of to ta l diet made up of country food, the spatial use of surrounding lands, the difference between older and younger peoples' a c t i v i t i e s , the number of residents possessing certain employment s k i l l s , or the difference i n subsistence time patterns. A l l would t e l l one a l i t t l e more about the'value' that tradi t iona l ac t iv i t i e s hold i n the l ives of the two different groups of people. Such comparisons would also give some indication as to whether the study cxmrtunity was more or less tradi t ional than a neighbouring community, and possibly the reasons for i t s posit ion. Although not included here, because the data for Old Crow was suff ic ient , such comparisons could have been made i f this had not been the case. Note 1: This conclusion was reached by a DIAND employee after carrying out a survey of Ross River businesses and the effects of the reconstruction of the North Canol Road in 1984. This document i s not publ ica l ly available. 148 4. Employed vs Unemployed Residents: Does Income Influence Participation? It has already been shown that tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s are economically important to most Old Crow people. It has also been shown that many of those households which have a high annual income often engage in trapping and ratt ing for the non-economic benefits they believe such ac t iv i t i e s generate. However, these conclusions were reached after close personal observation and extensive interviewing. If such access to information i s not available one can s t i l l gather evidence to support the idea that interest in subsistence i s not solely determined by economic conditions. Table 4.20 presents data on the number of subsistence ac t iv i t i e s 47 households participated in during 1983. The data shows that most households participated in 2 to 4 a c t i v i t i e s . The lack of participation by lower income households was a function of either age or marital status rather than the absence of adequate income to finance tr ips out on the land. Older residents, as well as single mothers, had country food given to them by family and friends, while wood was supplied by the Band. One of the pr inc ipa l conclusions that can be drawn from the table i s that, as household income increases in Old Crow, residents do not reduce the ir use of subsistence products. Because higher income households continue to engage i n several tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s , i t i s quite l i k e l y that they are deriving some non-economic benefits from their endeavours. The same can probably be said about lower income households, but i t 149 Table 4.20 PARTICIPATION IN SUBSISTENCE ACTIVITIES AS A FUNCTION OF HOUSEHOLD INCOME, OLD CROW, 1983 INCOME1 # OF HOUSEHOLDS PARTICIPATING IN A GIVEN (ANNUAL-1983) NUMBER OF SUBSISTENCE ACTIVITIES2 0 1 2 3 4 5 or more $ 3,000 - 5,999 3 1 1 2 -$ 6,000 - 8,999 2 1 2 1 3 $ 9,000 - 11,999 1 - 1 3 3 $12,000 - 19,999 1 - 7 1 -$20,000 - 29,999 1 - 3 2 3 $30,000 - 39,999 , - - - 1 2 $ over 40,000 1 TOTAL HOUSEHOLDS REPRESENTED - 47 Note 1: Income figures for each household were approximations. 2: Subsistence ac t iv i t i e s here include: hunting, f i shing, trapping, rat t ing , hauling wood and beadwork (handicrafts) Source: f i e l d data 1984 150 should be noted that for many of these lat ter cases i t i s the economic value of products from the land which make a more v i t a l contribution to the household economy. Other tests can also be performed with employment and income data to see i f larger amounts of monetary income lead to such things as: reduced participation in tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s ; higher harvesting expenditures; or high levels of cash being spent on imported food items. Wolfe (1981) for example, used Speaman's rank correlation coefficient to see what types of relationships existed between income levels and subsistence a c t i v i t i e s , and income levels and harvesting costs among Alaskan Inupiats. Wolfe was able to conclude that part ic ipation in subsistence ac t iv i t i e s did increase with income, and that households with larger monetary incomes spent more on carrying out subsistence ac t iv i t i e s than households with smaller incomes (1981:294). These findings are similar to others that have been made about northern hunting societies. Most notably; higher income households often invest more money i n time-saving equipment which allows them to get out on the land and be quite productive while continuing to participate in ful l - t ime wage employment (Kruse, 1981; Lonner, 1981; and Wolfe 1981). Wolfe's idea of using rank correlation coefficient could quite eas i ly be extended to test the relationships of a variety of different variables l ike age and subsistence ac t iv i t i e s or income levels and age. Such tests , depending on the results , can help a researcher make 151 qualitat ive statements about the 'value* of subsistence ac t iv i t i e s using quantitative analysis, statements that might not have been possible otherwise. In Old Crow for instance, income was compared to both subsistence ac t iv i t i e s and harvesting costs. Both tests revealed "no relationship" between the variables. It was concluded that people participated i n a variety of tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s no matter what their income level or the f i n a l cost of harvesting. By implication then, there must have existed other non-economic factors which also motivated the Old Crow people to engage i n tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . While Old Crow may be a unique case, one can see how quantitative analysis can generate qualitat ive conclusions. 5. Other Suggestions In no way are the previous methods the only ones available to the valuation researcher. Depending on the data col lected, many analyses can be done. McSkimming's (1975) research into terr i tory and t e r r i t o r i a l i t y i s a very good example here. Through a series of questions and a mapping exercise, McSkimming was able to identify the lands that were important to both the young and old residents of Old Crow. One of the more interesting results of the study was that although the spatial extent of land use had been reduced s ignif icant ly over the years, the land was s t i l l a part of the people (1975:150). The people saw the surrounding land as co l lec t ive ly theirs and i t s control by them as the key for their evolvement into a unified northern society (IBID). 152 Such conclusions imply that the land, and i t s resources are 'valuable' to the Old Crow people. McSkinrning realized this and made no attempt to try and define those 'values' numerically. To do so would have under-estimated the true relationship between the people and the land. This attitude i s in keeping with one of the major themes of this thesis; i t i s more important to establish that 'value'(s) exists at a l l , than to become preoccupied with trying to define 'value'(s) in quantitative terms. After a l l , the fact that most native northerners continue to engage i n tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s , especially those also employed fu l l - t ime, i s i n i t s e l f an indication that some 'value' exists . The fact that research has proven that monetary income, wage employment and market occupations seem to increase subsistence harvests only reinforces this viewpoint. SUMMARY When a researcher res tr ic t s him/herself to finding quantitative values only, there i s a r i sk that the result ing 'values' w i l l be inaccurate. Tradit ional ac t iv i t i e s in the north continue to be associated with a larger cultural framework of 'values', self images, and social functions that may perpetuate them, even i f they themselves become "uneconomic" (Wolfe, 1981:306). Research has proven that some or a l l of these non-economic factors also influence the choices that individuals make i n their attempt to find a balance between the tradi t iona l and modern way of l i f e . Therefore, what the valuation 153 researcher should be aiming for i s u t i l i z i n g both quantitative and qualitative analysis to get at the non-quantifiable elements of northern native l i f e . When such an approach was used in Old Crow i t became evident that numerous values existed in connection with resource use i n the community. Caribou, moose, muskrats, f i s h , furbearers and wood resources are a l l important to modern l i f e in Old Crow. It i s unlikely that this situation w i l l change i n the coming years given the community's location; peripheral to modern industr ia l economic a c t i v i t i e s . This chapter also showed how, in the absence of a h i s tor i ca l record, 'values' could s t i l l be ident i f ied . The examples discussed proved that quantitative analysis using s tat ic f i e l d data can s t i l l lead to conclusions about'value' s imilar to those generated through the use of h i s tor i ca l data; for i t i s when quantitative analysis produces results that hint at the existence of hidden, in f luent ia l factors that the researcher i s f i n a l l y getting at the non-quantifiable elements he or ig ina l ly sought. 154 CHAPTER 5 SUMMARY AND OCCLUSIONS The previous chapters have attempted to show that in order to begin 'valuing' tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in the northern economy an effort must be made to understand native categories and perceptions of natural resources. It has become increasingly evident that, despite the influence of the outside market place, tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s are s t i l l important economically, soc ia l ly and cul tura l ly to native northerners. With this in mind data collected i n the community of Old Crow i n 1963, 1973 and 1984, was used to record the people's attitudes and perceptions toward the land and i t s bounty, and to identify the 'values' these elements held for them. The primary thrust of the thesis was to develop a means of precipitat ing out those 'values' which are important to the tradi t ional pursuits of the Old Crow people. This chapter discusses whether the thesis has been successful in meeting this goal by determining whether the proposed 'ho l i s t i c ' method identif ied 'values' that contemporary valuation methods could not. The chapter closes with a discussion on whether i n the future researchers w i l l be able to move beyond merely identifying 'values' to a scheme that actually allows for some level of significance to be assigned to each 'value' active in the tradi t ional economy. 155 1. Contemporary Valuation Methods Attaching numerical values to human ac t iv i t i e s has been the focus of much research over the years. More spec i f i ca l ly , those employing economic means of measuring the volume and 'value' of production and exchange have come to the forefront in the context of the Canadian north. Those ideas receiving most attention have been: 1) converting a l l domestically produced goods to one standard equivalent - preferably with economic value in the market place; 2) valuing foods consumed at home according to some sort of market pr ice , usually substitution or replacement costs; and 3) valuing domestically produced goods according to both replacement costs and production costs. The thesis examined each of the above using data from Old Crow to see the types of 'values' that could be generated. In general, a l l three were found to suffer from the problems of: the absence of re l iable h i s tor i ca l records, inappropriate time frames, l imited scope, and the fa i lure to deal with the non-market 'values* of tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . The research showed that the absence of re l iable and comprehensive h i s t o r i c a l records i n the north has meant that in order to apply contemporary valuation methods, exhaustive surveys have usually been 156 required at the local l eve l . With the three above methods requiring extensive individual household data, their applications to date were found to deal with only a limited number of households in a community, and with ac t iv i t i e s for a single year. This holds serious implications when one considers that most households employ unique economic strategies or participate in the tradi t ional sector for very different reasons than a neighbour. By l imit ing a study to the examination of only a few households the a b i l i t y to make general statements about 'value' that are accurate, i s rea l ly not possible. A second cr i t i c i sm was that a l l three methods fai led to acknowledge that patterns of resource dependency constantly fluctuate from year to year in the north as individuals respond dif ferent ly to changes i n species a v a i l a b i l i t y , new technology, fur prices , job opportunities and so on. Because a time dimension was absent in a l l three approaches, the result ing 'value' was never found to be t ru ly indicative of the actual place that tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s held in a native corirtunity. The f i n a l general cr i t i c i sm discussed i n the thesis was the fa i lure of a l l three methods to deal with the non-market 'values' of domestic production and exchange. Suffice to say, monetary or other quantitative evaluations can never indicate the 'value' of hunting, trapping and f ishing as a soc ia l or cul tural ac t iv i ty , or as a way of l i f e . 157 What emerged from the application of the Old Crow f i e ld data to the various methods was that the various economic analyses f e l l short of precipitat ing out the often more important socia l 'values'. Neither substitution costs or production costs captured the cultural and sp i r i tua l rejuvenation that many Old Crow residents experienced in their annual trek to the Flats for rat t ing . Nor did they convey the important social role that the dis tr ibut ion of food to the Elders or the luckless played i n the community. While these methods did increase the researcher's knowledge of the place that tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s held in the l ives of the Old Crow people, their a b i l i t y to f u l l y identify the wide range of 'values' associated with tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s was noticeably lacking. What was missing i n a l l three accounts was the real izat ion that the subsistence system in place in most northern hunting societies i s a separate and dis t inct socio-economic form where people make rat ional decisions based on tradi t ion and custom, and not simply their contemporary socio-economic circumstances. 2. New Hol i s t i c Method The primary focus of the latter half of the thesis was to develop a valuation scheme which revealed the variety of 'values' associated with tradi t ional pursuits in Old Crow. It did this by analyzing the quantifiable elements of native economic a c t i v i t i e s , and by identifying native categories and perceptions of renewable resources both past and present. Both of these tasks were carried out using a h i s tor i ca l approach. 158 The research revealed that hunting, f ishing and trapping in Old Crow have been operating over shrinking space in the last 25 years. However, there has been l i t t l e change in harvest levels and household part ic ipation since the early 1970's. In fact , trapping ac t iv i t i e s have increased s l ight ly i n recent years due to a lack of winter wage enployment opportunities. Going further, 94% of the households interviewed s t i l l re ly on country food, with 55% of them believing that over 50% of their food needs are met by the land. New time-saving technology, as well as a close proximity to resources are the most obvious reasons why the Old Crow people have been able to successfully integrate the tradi t ional with the modern industr ia l sector. It cannot be denied that great economic value i s now attached to tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s in Old Crow. However, material security, the soc ia l ly binding force created by the sharing of subsistence products, relaxation, getting away from town, psychological sat isfact ion, and the social izat ion of children are also important 'values' associated with these pursuits. It i s readily apparent that numerous strategies (social forms) have been created by the Old Crow people to ensure the maintenance of the tradi t ional sector when social changes occur. What emerged through the analysis in Chapter 4 was that land-based renewable resources were not just an economic necessity, but also very important cu l tura l ly , soc ia l ly , nutr i t iona l ly , p o l i t i c a l l y and psychologically to the community of Old Crow. They have not only helped to maintain community so l idar i ty in the fact of major socia l change, they 159 have enabled the Old Crow people to remain closely linked to the land; to affirm their cul tural ident i ty . The f i n a l section of Chapter 4 was devoted to operationalizing the "new approach" in the absence of a h i s tor i ca l record. It was shown that a time dimension can be incorporated into valuation research simply by examining the ac t iv i t i e s of different age groups within a community. The various research methods discussed demonstrated that non-economic values associated with the tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s can s t i l l be e l i c i t e d from data that i s limited in time and/or scope. While native attitudes and perceptions towards the land may not be as readi ly discernable as they are when h i s tor i ca l data i s used, they can s t i l l be identif ied to a certain extent. Time spent out on the land, the existence of training programs for chi ldren, and the geographic t err i tory used by a group, a l l t e l l the researcher something about the importance of the land to the modern northern native. By including some of these more qual i tat ive elements i n a valuation research project, the researcher can capture some of the more important 'values' associated with tradi t ional activities^, 'values' frequently missed by the more quantitative approaches. 3. Moving Beyond Identifying Social Values It has been shown that in order to get at those 'values' which are tru ly important to a group in their tradi t ional pursuits, the researcher must go beyond merely using numerical analysis . However, once the researcher has done t h i s , and has generated a l i s t of the more 160 qualitative 'values' associated with hunting, trapping and so on, can he/she go one step further in order to satisfy policy makers, and actually begin assigning a comprehensive value to each act iv i ty? Such an exercise would require a scheme that could grasp qualitative information and present i t in a form that either quantified, ranked, or assigned a level of significance to the 'values' identif ied previously. Unfortunately i t i s not simply a question of having members of a cul tural group rank a l i s t of 'values' in their order of importance, or having a researcher assign a relat ive level of significance to each 'value' based on the number of times a 'value was mentioned by his/her informants. A large cul tural gap exists between these schemes in their conceptual form and the desired end product, a comprehensive value. Bridging this gap requires evaluation researchers to find a means of "quantifying" qualitative information in a way that recognizes the vast differences in the bel iefs and values associated with production & consumption ac t iv i t i e s which exist between western industrial society and more tradit ional societies l ike Old Crow. Given this , the idea of having a cul tural group rank a l i s t of qualitative 'values' in their order of importance would involve, identifying a l l the 'values' that the cul tural group associated with each tradi t ional ac t iv i ty , and then pol l ing every individual to get his/her response. For both tasks the researcher would have to make sure that each person c learly understood what was being asked of them. Even with adequate time and human and f inancial resources, the researcher would 161 s t i l l not be guaranteed complete success. So much of this kind of research requires co-operation from a group of people who often do not share the same conviction to 'valuing' production and consumption ac t iv i t i e s as people in the modern industr ia l economy do. It i s quite l i k e l y that the second idea of having a researcher assign a re lat ive level of significance to each 'value' ident i f ied , i s subject to a similar set of problems. This i s not to say that either idea should not be t r i e d . Both sharply contrast the prevalent methods of valuation used today by many western researchers; namely, resorting to economic analysis of those elements in a tradi t ional society which have some sort of a numerical value. Hence, both ideas need to be tested in some way to see i f they can indeed better approximate the true 'value' of tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . It i s time that valuation research moved toward trying to incorporate the cul tural bel iefs and values of those groups who l ive close to the land. This thesis has proposed a means of identifying the 'values' which are important to people who have a different way of l i f e than our own. The next step i s to take these 'values' and try and find a means of valuing them that i s acceptable to a l l interested part ies . 162 CONCLUSION The research has shown that when trying identify a l l the 'values' associated with northern renewable resources i t i s possible to incorporate the resource needs of native people which arise out of such things as tradit ion or custom. To focus solely on numerical values l i k e , the economic worth of hunting, in most cases misses what i s t ru ly 'valuable' about tradi t ional a c t i v i t i e s . The data collected on Old Crow indicates that the people'value' their way of l i f e for several reasons and that they have a continuing bond with the land despite the increasing intrusion of the outside market place. Furthermore, i t i s unlikely that this situation w i l l change in the near future given Old Crow's geographic position - peripheral to modern industr ia l a c t i v i t i e s . Even though several statements have been made about the 'values' and bel iefs of the Old Crow people, the information presented should in no way be considered complete. Too much of what went on in Old Crow was either missed or not understood by the researcher. This inevitably raises the question, can we as researchers actually carry out the recommendations made in the f i n a l section when i t involves assigning a comprehensive value to a way of l i f e which f a l l s outside our l i f e experiences? 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(NCRC 62-2). 172 Van Stone, James W. 1960 Webster, S.J. 1974 Welsh, Anne. 1970 "A Successful Combination Of Subsistence And Wage Economies On The V i l l a g e L e v e l " . Economic  Development and C u l t u r a l Change. The U n i v e r s i t y of Chicago. V o l . 8. No. 2. January, pp. 174-191. "Problems Of Determining And Measuring The R e l i a b i l i t y Of National Accounts In Developing Countries". The Review of Income and Wealth. Series 20. pp. 41-54. "Community Pattern and Settlement Pattern i n the development of Old Crow V i l l a g e , Yukon T e r r i t o r y " . Western Canadian Journal of Anthropology. 2-1. pp. 17-30. Wolfe, R.J. 1981 "The Economic E f f i c i e n c y of Food Production i n a Western Alaska Eskimo Population". Langdon, Steve J . (ed) Contemporary Subsistence Economies of  Alaska. Department of F i s h and Game, Alaska. D i v i s i o n of Subsistence. Technical Paper Nb. 67. Juneau, pp. 267-309. Wolfe R.J. et a l . 1984 Wolforth, John. 1971 Subsistence-Based Economies In Coastal Communities  of Southwest Alaska. Technical Paper No. 89. prepared f o r ; D i v i s i o n of Subsistence, Alaska Department of F i s h and Game, and Minerals. Management Service Alaska Region, U.S. Department of the I n t e r i o r . Juneau. February. The Evolution and Economy of the Delta Community. Dept of Indian A f f a i r s and Northern Development. Northern Science Research Group. Mackenzie Delta Research Project. #11. Ottawa. Yukon T e r r i t o r i a l Government 1984 Harvest Records f o r various years. Game Branch. Dept of Renewable Resources. Whitehorse. Personal Communications Attwood, W. 1985 Energy, Mines and Resources 1985 Acting D i r e c t o r . Economic Development. Indian and Northern A f f a i r s Canada. Whitehorse. January. Renewable Energy D i v i s i o n Ottawa. January, 31. Health and Welfare Canada 1985 Income Security Programs. Vancouver. January. Yukon T e r r i t o r i a l Government 1984a Dept. of Economic Development and Tourism. Whitehorse. October, 17. 173 APPENDIX A OLD CROW ffJESTICMNAIRE 174 APPENDIX A OLD CROW QUESTIONNAIRE This questionnaire was designed to e l i c i t facts and the quantifiable elements of the people's economic ac t iv i t i e s and general l i f e rhythm in Old Crow, both past and present. The questionnaire was similar to the questionnaire used by J . K . Stager in 1974, asking the people about their tradi t ional ac t iv i t i e s , family l i f e , wage employment and the community in general. The sample population were asked a l l the same questions. People responded to the questions for two time periods, 1978 and 1983. Answers were recorded according to age and sex. 1 Before in i t i a t ing the questionnaire the interviewer explained to each person that the research was being carried out to try and show others the importance of the land and i t s resources to the people of Old Crow. Hunting: 1. What animals did you hunt in the past year and how were they used? Question Caribou Moose Rabbit Muskrat Birds Other # Animals hunted use: food clothing sold dog food other *2. Do you use a l l of the caribou you catch? What do you do with what you don't use? 3. What months of the year did you hunt each kind of animal? (Write down time spent each month and the number of animals in each month). Caribou Moose Rabbit Muskrat Birds Other Jan. Feb. Mar Dec Total * - indicates question only asked in 1983 Note 1: Three age categories were used: young 20-35 years medium 36-59 years old > 60 years 175 How much did i t cost you to hunt this past year? (gas, food, shells , etc) F a l l Spring Winter Summer or Caribou Rabbit Birds Moose Muskrat Other Did you use a l l your own equipment? Y N If no, whose equipment did you borrow? (share) Name: Relation: How did you hunt each particular animal this past year? Caribou Rabbit Birds_ Moose Muskrat Other How did you keep the meat and who did the work? (How much time was spent?) Method Work Time Caribou Moose Rabbit Muskrat Birds Other How did you travel to hunt? (How much time was spent?) Caribou Rabbit Birds Moose Muskrat Other Did you hunt: Alone? Family? Other? who shared the meat? Caribou Moose Rabbit Muskrat Birds Other (It was noted i f the person who went along for the hunt was a regular partner or not) How much money did you make on the furs you sold? Caribou Rabbit Birds Moose Muskrat Other On the map mark the places where you hunted each animal and the route taken to get there. Are there any rules followed by the community regarding the k i l l i n g of caribou; moose and so on? 176 Trapping: 1. What type of animals did you trap over this past year? (Record numbers trapped) Muskrats Weasel Other Beaver Mink (specify) Marten Lynx 2. What months did you trap each animal? (Write down time spent each month and the number of animals in each month). Muskrats Beaver Marten Weasel Mink Lynx Other (specify) Jan. Feb. Mar Dec. Total 3. a) When you trap, do you go out for days at a time? b) Have you ever spent an entire winter in the bush trapping? 4. How did you trap each type of animal? Muskrat Weasel Other Beaver Mink (specify) Marten Lynx 5. a) How many traplines did you have? b) How long were they? c) How often did you check them? d) Where were your traplines? (Show on map) 6. Did you use your own equipment to trap? Y N If no, whose equipment did you borrow? (share) Name: Relation: 7. How much did i t cost you to trap this past year (gas, food, equipment, etc.) F a l l Spring Winter Summer 8. How did you prepare each type of pelt and who did the work? (Write down time spent). Muskrat Beaver •Marten Weasel Mink Lynx Other (specify) 177 9. How did you travel to trap? Muskrat Weasel Other Beaver Mink (specify) Marten Lynx 10. Did you trap Alone? Family? Other? Who shared the catch? Muskrat Beaver Marten Weasel Mink Lynx Other (specify) 11. How did you s e l l your furs? To whom? When? Where? $ made? Muskrat Beaver Marten Weasel Mink Lynx Other (specify) 12. Did your family use any fur? How much? What for? Muskrat Beaver Marten Weasel Mink Lynx Other (specify) 13. a) Mark on the map your traplines or where you trapped. b) Mark on the map your trapping camps c) Mark on the map the route you take to your camp and/or traplines *14. Do you ever use a deadfall trap? (How do you make i t? Who taught you?) *15. Who taught you to trap? *16.a) Do you have an area that you trap regularly? b) Why do you trap there? (father did etc) c) Do you change your trapline routes each year? *l7.a).What new equipment did you buy for hunting, trapping or fishing in the past 5 years? b) Who paid for i t ? c) What new equipment would you l ike? 178 Fishing; 1. What type of f i sh did you catch in the past year? (Write down the numbers caught and how f ish used) Use Dog Salmon King Salmon Whitefish Other** dog food food other ** includes - jackfish, losche, sucker, coni and grayling 2. How many nets did you put out? How often did you check them? 3. What time of the year did you f ish for each? (Write down the time spent and the numbers caught) Dog Salmon King Salmon Whitefish Other Jan Feb Mar Dec Total 4. How did you keep a l l the fish? and who did the work? Dog Salmon Whitefish King Salmon Other 5. How much did i t cost you to f i sh this past year? (nets, gas, etc) F a l l Spring Winter Summer 6. Did you use a l l your own equipment? Y N If no, whose equipment did you borrow? (share! Name: Relation: 7. a) Did you go to f i sh camp this past year? b) How long? c) Who with? If no, did your family used to go to f ish camp? Why did they stop? 8. Who did you go fishing with? Who shared the catch? 9. a) Mark on the map the place where you catch each type of f ish b) Mark on the map your fishcamp i f you have one c) Mark on the map the route you take to your camp/nets Wage Activities; l . a ) Did you have any jobs in the past year? b) Who did you work for? c) How long? d) What Season? e) What i s steady work? 179 2. How did you get this job(s)? - Did you go looking or did people ask you? Looking Asked 3.a) Were there many jobs this past year? b) Were they hard to get? lots hard not many sometimes hard easy 4. Do you have any special job training? Job Training: Type Where Taken When 5. What sorts of jobs were available this past year? 6. Did you work outside Old Crow this past year? Y N Where? When? How long? Job? *7. When you look around for a job, what kind do you want? How long should i t go on? Type Length *8. How do you feel about shift work? *9. How do you feel about moving your family away for a job? *10. ( i f appropriate) How come you don't want to work a l l year round? * l l . a ) Would you work outside Old Crow? Y N b) Have you worked outside Old Crow? Y N Where? What? When? How long? *12. When no jobs are available what do you do? look for work elsewhere? go on UIC? trap and hunt? other? (specify) *13. *14. Would you l ike to winter trap? Why don't you? Would you take a job in the Beaufort Sea i f the opportunity arose? -LOU *15. What type of jobs do you prefer? How come? Job? How come? in town o i l /p ipe l ine building roads mining other Family Life: *l .a) Is Loucheux spoken in the home regularly? regularly sometimes no _ b) Among whom? older people parents/old people parents parents/children chi ldren/old people a l l of the above c) Does anyone understand Loucheux but not speak i t ? *2. Why did young people leave home in the past 5 years? *3.a) How much of your day is spent at home? F a l l Spring Winter Summer b) Do the children have assigned jobs? Y N Job F a l l Winter Spring Summer *4. How many hours do children spend working and playing each day? Working/hours playing /hours during school young (£6) older (7-14) summer young (^ 6) older (7-14) *5. How has time spent working changed since you were young? *6. Does your whole family go into the bush for hunting or trapping? always never sometimes *7. Who from your family went to Crow Flats for ratt ing this past year? How long did they go for? *8. Is there any occasion when your whole family goes out onto the land? 181 *9. Has your family been out on the land in the past 5 years? Where? When? How long? Do you know how to make? Yes No Did you make i n the past 3 years? Yes No toboggan dog whip harnesses snow shoes rat canoe f ix caribou wood boat canvas scow log cabin dog packs babiche tan hides sew boats beading drying meat/fish bone grease pemican f i x a kicker deadfall snare f ix a skidoo f i x furs set a trapline Social Activities: - a l l questions only asked.for one period, 1983 1. Do you go to band meetings? How often have they been held in the past 5 years? always sometimes weekly monthly never every two months seldom 2. Do you speak your peace at band meetings or just l isten? 3. Does the band council have much influence in Old Crow? Do people do what the band council t e l l s them to do? 4. Do the same people attend the various meetings held in town? Are they mostly older? younger? 182 5. Do most people agree with what happens and is said at band meetings? 6. If you disagree with what is said; what do you do? 7. Do you talk among friends and relatives about what you w i l l say or feel about things before you go to a band meeting? 8. Do young people attend meetings? 9. How have band meetings changed since 1960 or so? 10. Do you go to the dances held in Old Crow? 11. What kind of dances are done? tradit ional tradit ional /rock'n r o l l country other 12. /About how many people go to the dances? 13. a) How often do they have dances? b) How often do you go? 14. How have dances changed? 15. a) How much drinking i s there done before or during dances now days? b) What does drinking do to the dances? 16. a) Do you play Bingo? a lot sometimes rarely b) Do you play Navada Cards? always sometimes never 17. Do you take part in the sports at the school? Social Gatherings; - a l l questions only asked for one time period, 1983. 1. How many people do you think go to church? Have services changed? If so, how? 2. When things are done for the community do people help wil l ingly? 3. Do people expect to be paid for working on community act iv i t ies? Y N (Are there any ac t iv i t i e s where people don't expect pay? ( i f appropriate)). 183 4. Do people help everyone or just friends & relatives everyone friends & relatives 5. Are feasts held l ike always? Community Economics: - a l l questions only asked for one time period, 1983. 1. What people at home bring in money or goods? 2. a) What part of the money coming into the house comes from trapping? b) What part of the money coming into the house comes from trapping, beadwork, and other tradit ional act iv i t ies? 3. What part of the money coming into the house comes from wage employment? 4. What part of the food you eat comes from the Co-op? 5. What part of the household food comes from hunting, f ishing, trapping etc.? 6. How often does your family eat caribou? 7. What type of assistance do you get from the government? Old Age Pension Mother's allowance e t c . . . 8. Does anyone else in the household receive government assistance? 9. Did you take advantage of the government's housing project? 10. Where do you get your firewood from? (had them show places on map) 11. How much wood do you burn in one year? 12. How much income do you spend on food? hunting? trapping? and fishing? Personal Movement: 1. Have you been outside in the last two years? Where When How long How did Cost Who paid you get there 2. Have you travelled in the Old Crow land in the last two years besides for hunting etc? (have them show on the map). 3. How much of the Old Crow land have you seen in your lifetime? (have them show on the map). 184 APPENDIX B SUPPORTING TABLES 185 Table B-l FOOD WEIGHT VALUES USED TO CALCULATE OLD CROW COUNTRY FOOD HARVESTS* Species E d i b l e Weight ( lbs) (kg) Car ibou 120 54.5 Moose 438 199.0 Rabbits Geese 1 1.5 3.5 .68 1.6 Ducks 2 1.7 .77 Ptarmigans 3 .8 .36 Muskra ts 4 1.4 .63 Dog Salmon 5 King Salmon 6 W h i t e f i s h 7 O t h e r 8 3 3.75 1.125 1.875 1.36 1.7 .51 .85 Notes: * : A l l animal and b i r d f i g u r e s are der ived from Berger , 1977:24, whi le a l l f i s h spec ies are from Bryan et a l 1973:36 as adopted by Stager , 1974:65. 1,2&3: These three spec ies were grouped under the common heading o f B i r d s . Most res idents cou ld not r e c a l l s p e c i f i c harvests so the average weight o f 2 l b s o r .91 kgs was a p p l i e d t o a l l b i r d h a r v e s t s . 4: The amount of muskrats eaten i n 1983 was der ived from the formula used by Stager i n 1974 and from f i e l d d a t a . Fami l i es who i n d i c a t e d that they d i d eat muskrat were assigned 4 r a t s / d a y / a d u l t o r 2 r a t s / d a y / c h i l d f o r the number o f days they were i n the f l a t s be fore June 1 ( t h i s i s when r a t s become undesi rab le as human food) . 5,6&7: These weights are from Bryan et a l (1973) and Usher (1971) who s ta ted that 75% of a f i s h was a c t u a l l y e d i b l e . 8: "Other" i s comprised o f the average e d i b l e weight o f g r a y l i n g , l o s c h , sucker and inconnu. Table B-2 MEAT/FISH HARVEST DATA FOR OLD CROW 1973 AND 19831 Species 1973 1983A 1983B Quantity Total kgs Quantity Total kgs Quantity Total kgs Caribou 751 40,929.50 600 32,700.00 1,000 54,500.00 Moose 22 4,378.00 22 4,378.00 22 4,378.00 Rabbit 202 137.36 388 263.84 388 263.84 Birds 342 310.00 255 231.81 255 231.81 Muskrats 2 2,896.8 1,825.00 2,427.3 1,529.18 2,427.3 1,529.18 F i s h 3 - 2,875.57 - 1,865.43 - 1,865.43 50,455.43 40,968.26 62,768.26 Source 1983A : f i e l d data 1983B : f i e ld data and YTG o f f i c i a l Caribou Harvest Records for 1982/83 and 1983/84 (YTG Dept. of Renewable Res. 1984) 1: For Edible weight values see Table B - l .2: Quantities were derived from formula applied by Stager in 1974. 4 rats/day/adult and 2 rats/day/child were assigned to each camp for each day spent at Flats prior to June 1 unless f i e ld data indicated otherwise. (After June 1 assumed rats unpalletable). 3: Quantities are not shown here. For harvest figures see Table 4.2. Weights here were derived from the assumption made by Stager (1974) that only 25% of a l l f i sh caught was consumed by humans except King Salmon. King Salmon i s reserved primarily for human consumption. A l l edible weights were equal to 75% of to ta l weight after Usher (1971). 187 Table B-3 SUMMARY OF HUNTING COSTS, OLD CROW, 19831 SPECIES # HSHLDS PARTIC HARVEST #'s TOTAL COST AVG COST/ HSHLD AVG LANDED COST/ANIMAL Caribou 37 542 $10,275. $277.70 $18.95 Moose 13 21 $2,045. $157.312 $97.38 Rabbit 13 388 $500. $38.463 $1.29 Birds 17 255 $FREE $FREE4 $FREE Fish 16 4,895 $3,055. $190.94 $.62 $15,875.5 Note 1: These hunting costs are based only on gasoline, o i l and food costs incurred by the individual households. No other production costs are represented here because of the d i f f i c u l t y i n al locating the cost of a skidoo etc to one specif ic ac t iv i ty when i t s uses are many. 2: 4 households obtained moose free while involved in some other ac t iv i ty l ike wood cutting and therefore costs/hshld here are not to ta l ly ref lect ive of the actual s i tuation. * 3: Here, 10 out of 13 families obtained rabbits free - mainly at the f la ts or near town. One household incurred a cost of $400.00 therefore $500.00 i s rea l ly not indicative of actual costs nor i s the $38.46/hshld. 4: A l l birds were obtained in May in f la ts for free or on traplines set for rabbits near town. 5: This cost i s higher than the to ta l cost shown on Table 3.6 because more households were used here. (Did not have complete income data to do this so only 40 households examined i n relat ion to 3.6) 188 Table B-4 CPI INDEX (BASE YEAR: 1981) 1913 12.1 1914 12.2 1915 12.4 1916 13.5 1946 19.0 1976 62.9 1917 16.0 1947 20.8 1977 67.9 1918 18.0 1948 23.8 1978 73.9 1919 19.8 1949 24.5 1979 80.7 1920 23.0 1950 25.2 1980 88.9 1921 20.2 1951 27.9 1981 100.0 1922 18.5 1952 28.5 1982 110.8 1923 18.5 • 1953 28.3 1983 117.2 1924 18.2 1954 28.5 1984 122.3 1925 18.4 1955 28.5 1926 18.6 1956 28.9 1927 18.3 1957 29.8 1928 18.3 1958 30.6 1929 18.5 1959 31.0 1930 18.4 1960 31.2 1931 16.6 1961 31.7 1932 15.1 1962 32.0 1933 14.4 1963 32.6 1934 14.6 1964 33.2 1935 14.7 1965 34.0 1936 15.0 1966 35.2 1937 15.4 1967 36.5 1938 15.6 1968 38.0 1939 15.5 1969 39.7 1940 16.1 1970 41.0 1941 17.1 1971 42.2 1942 17.9 1972 44.2 1943 18.2 1973 47.6 1944 18.3 1974 52.8 1945 18.4 1975 58.5 Source: - Stat i s t ics Canada Catalogue 62-001 - 1981 = 100 (this was derived using a CPI formula) 189 Table B-5 SUMMARY OF EMPLOYMENT DATA OLD CROW - 1983 # EMPLOYED MALE FEMALE YOUNG (19 - 35 yrs) 17 (100%) 12 (70.6%) INTERVIEW TOTAL 34 TYPE OF EMPLOYMENT MALE Labourer Equipment Operator Alcohol Worker Co-Op Store Weather Observer C l e r i c a l Teacher's Aid Social Worker Chamber Maid Pipeline Newspaper Housekeeping Other 16 2 1 1 1 _8 31 LENGTH OF EMPLOYMENT wk - 1 mos - 3 mos mos - 1 yr yr or more 4 2 10 15 31 MEDIUM (36 - 59 yrs) OLD (60 and over) 11 (100%) 3 (37.5%) 3 (27%) 1 (8%) 19 23 % FEMALE 52 6.5 3 3 3 6.5 26 100% 3 2 1 2 1 5 16 19 13 6 13 6 31 100% 13 7 32 48 -100% 3 11 16 12 19 69 100% Source: f i e l d data 

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