Cold River Spirits: The Legacy of an Athabascan-Irish Family from Alaska's Yukon River (Google eBook)

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Epicenter Press, 2000 - Biography & Autobiography - 191 pages
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This is an inspirational and deeply moving story of a proud Alaska Indian family struggling to survive in two worlds. Sam and Louise Harper and their ten children make a soul-grinding transition into a modern white-dominated society where they face bigotry, poverty, and illness. Yet, Louise remains in touch with centuries-old traditions of healing, honoring nature's spirits, and a belief that the spirits of all Athabascans one day will return to the headquarters of the Yukon River. COLD RIVER SPIRITS is an exhilarating story of survival told with humor and grace. Jan Harper-Haines explores her family's powerful conflicts and contrasts with help from her grandmother, who well knew the ancient spirit world, and from her mother, the first Alaska Native to graduate from the University of Alaska.
  

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Flora Jane Harper is a beautiful amazing intelligent young lady
who learns fast and teaches her self and her struggling indian
family that education is the most important thing in the whole
world
!!! She shows them all by example how to leave the poverty
they are suffering in and go to boarding schools and on to bigger
and better lives. She is the one and only first american Indian women
to graduate out of the University of Alaska!!! She becomes a teacher
and marries a very fine man and has lovely children and her siblings
also seem to go on and thrive despite the hardships they endured
as children. This is an amazing story of family love and courage and
believing in one self and the determination to succeed against all odds
and Flora Jane Harper deserves far more recognition than she gets!
She deserves National attention for what she achieved in a very harsh
and cold land against a time where there was alot of racism towards
her and her family. Flora Jane Harper is a HERO!!!
 

Contents

Flood on the Chena
21
Lucy and The Gun
25
Sam and Louise
29
Hilda
35
Sams Women
39
The Nicolina
41
Whistling for the Wind
47
Sam and Helen
53
Muscatel
105
The Decision
109
The Proposal
115
Graduation
119
Eklutna Vocational School
127
Mary
131
The Roadhouse
137
War Survival and Remembering
143

The Knife
55
The Deeyninh
59
The Owl and the Ship
65
The Big Flu
73
Entering a White World
79
The Chemawa Years
81
Connie
89
Ladies of the Line
93
Ice Fog
95
Louises Jobs
101
Lucys Story
145
War
151
Francis Samuel Harper
155
Elsie
159
The House in Spenard
169
Visitors
175
Epilogue
183
Authors Afterword
189
KOYUKON ATHABASCAN GLOSSARY
191
Copyright

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About the author (2000)

Born in Sitka, Alaska, of Koyukon Athabascan and French-Dutch descent, Jan Harper-Haines began gathering stories about her Athbascan mother and grandmother in 1990. The author earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Alaska, where her mother, Flora Jane Harper, was the first Native graduate in 1935. She lives in the San Francisco area, where she continues to write.

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