State museum displays repatriated Tlingit masks

Posted: Thursday, June 05, 2008

Nine repatriated Tlingit masks of the Aak'w kwaan L'eeneidí (Dog Salmon House) will be on display at the Alaska State Museum during the 2008 Celebration.

Bob Sam, head of the Dog Salmon House, said the masks belonged to a man named Kaawaa.ee who died in the 19th century and were subsequently sold unrightfully. One of the masks was repatriated in 2001 from the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. The remaining eight masks were repatriated in 2006 from the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

Sam, the caretaker of the masks, said they have not been officially displayed since repatriation.

"This will be the first time that they've been brought out," he said.



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