The Beauty that we call Home.
The City and Borough of Yakutat is located on the northern coast of the Gulf of Alaska, approximately 200 miles from the capital city of Juneau and 300 miles from Anchorage. Yakutat encompasses about 9,460 square miles, and is situated along the turbulent crescent Saint Elias Range on the northern part of the panhandle in Southeast Alaska.
Yakutat serves as a home to about 800 residents, of which half are Native. The Natives comprise of three main stocks of people, namely the Tlingits that migrated from the southeastern panhandle, the Athabascans that travelled along the Alsek River from the interior, and the Cooper River People who traversed from the Cooper River Delta.
There are two moieties and five original clans. The moieties are the Raven and Eagle.
Under the Ravens there are the Luk’na-xadi who migrated from the southeast and the K’ineixkwaan who came from the Copper River area. More recently the T’akdeintaan, a spin off from the Luk’na-xadis from Hoonah has become a part of this Raven group.
The Eagle Moiety comprises of the Teikweidi, Shungukeidi and Glayix Kaawaantaan; three more Eagle Clans have since been included in this faction: the Jishkweidi, the Jilkaat Kaagwaantaan, and the Wooshkeetaan. The language of the three main groups immersed together, resulting in a dialect of the Tlingit language that is more diverse than the southern part of the panhandle.
"The Place Where
Yaakwdáat is the farthest north Southeast Alaska community. Its name is suggestive of the time when it was renowned as a major hub for trade.
The Yakutat Tlingit Tribe
To preserve, maintain and protect the unique culture, land and resources of Yakutat Tlingit people; to maximize our social, health & well-being while creating economic development benefits to all tribal members.
For over thirty-four years, the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe has successfully provided services for its Tribal members. The history of the Tribe dates back to 1983 when it was initially established as the Yakutat Native Association, which was formed as a non-profit organization to provide tribal services to the village through contracting under the provisions of Public Law 93-638, otherwise known as the Indian Self-Determination and Educational Assistance Act. The Yakutat Native Association finally earned its federal recognition on March 24, 1993, as a result of the Tribal Membership’s desire to reorganize the Tribe under the Indian Reorganization Act – bringing forth the emergence of the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe.
To this date, the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe has remained true to its purpose by continuously uplifting the cultural, social and economic aspects of its community; genuinely advancing the welfare of its 817 enrolled Tribal members as well as the entirety of the Tribe’s traditional territory which extends to the Yakutat Borough boundaries, encompassing nine thousand four hundred and sixty (9,460) square miles.
Situated in the heart of the traditional territory, the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe bears witness to the village’s struggling economy that largely consists of fishing, fish processing, and tourism during the months of April to September. The nature of the economy in the area leaves an evident trend of seasonal and unstable employment as many rely upon commercial fishing and subsistence hunting and fishing as means of livelihood. Subsequently, the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe, as the self-governing body duly formed to oversee the affairs of the Tlingit people and its native land, constantly aims to mitigate the otherwise inevitable social difficulties that accompany an unstable economy.
The Tribe addresses these concerns by the unwavering effort to develop programs and support services to maximize the social, health and well-being of its tribal members and promote economic growth within the community of Yakutat and its traditional territory.