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Desecration Bridge Retort
By Don Hoff Jr.


May 13, 2005

Mr. Mark Hoyt, I apologize to you and the readers for inserting the wrong native grave site picture. Here is a free history lesson that they don't teach at Kay-Hi. Taan ta Kwaan (Sea lion People) or known as Tongass Tribe had a village on Long Island. We also had villages on Village Island, Annette Island (where Metlakatla is today was a winter village) and Tongass Island. Ketchikan was a summer fish camp at one time that belonged to the Saanya Kwaan. There was a marriage between Tongass Tribal member and Saanya Kwaan member. Ketchikan Creek was a wedding gift to the Tongass Tribe. Ketchikan is a Tlingit word that means "Eagle with spread wings".

jpg Pennock Island graves

Tlingit totem poles and grave markers of David Andrew, Pennock Island near Ketchikan, Alaska, June 2, 1910. Photographer: Cobb, John N. Cobb; John N. Cobb Collection no. 418
Photo courtesy the University of Washington Libraries. Special Collections Division

Just about 10 years ago or so, we buried a Tongass Tribe member from the Bear House on Pennock Island. He drowned while subsisting for herring eggs.

Mark, you lived in Ketchikan for 40 years and you never opened your eyes. Pennock Island from the southern end to the northern end is full of Indian graves and some non-native graves too. During the early 20's and 30's people started building homes on the graves. They knew they were there too. We had a lot of grave markers and memorial totems but slowly disappeared as more homes were being built on Pennock Island. Now you know the rest of the story. In those days, there was a lot of discrimination and hatred toward Alaskan Natives.

It is not too late to stop the proposed bridge to Gravina Island VIA Pennock Island. No moneys passed through Congress. What will be sad is all the waste of $315 million dollars of American tax payer if they started building the bridge and end up in some court room with the same situation as the bridge project in Sevierville, TN and Pigeon Forge, TN.

In closing, I will see if I can insert a Pennock Island picture of our Tribal grave site to correct my mistake. This is my own opinion.

Don Hoff Jr.
Aan Kadax Tseen
Gaanax adi Clan
Yei l Hit
Taan ta Kwaan
Hixson, TN - USA


Related Viewpoint:

letter Re: Desecration bridge by Mark Hoyt - Ketchikan, AK - USA

letter Desecration Bridge by Don Hoff Jr. - Hixson, TN - USA


Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.



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