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  • 10. Raven Memorial Pole

    The figures that appear on poles may be distinguished by their most distinctive features. The loon is distinguished from other birds by a white neck-band, the eagle by a white head and large curved beak, the crane by a long narrow beak, the owl by a short curved beak, the cormorant by a long narrow beak, rather oval in cross section, and the raven by a rather large, slightly hooked beak, rather narrow in cross section. Raven is portrayed on this memorial column, distinguished by his rather large, slightly crooked beak. The person being honored by the erection of this pole was of the Raven moiety. In Sitka, the Tlingit traditionally placed their memorial poles on the ridge behind their village. Today that ridge would lie along present-day Katlian Street, overlooking the channel of water that separates Sitka and Japonski Island. The original was accidentally burned in 1959 and a reproduction was carved shortly thereafter.