Click on the crest figure(s) of the totem pole to see a close up image of that crest figure(s) and its corresponding story
Crane Pole Figure 1 Figure 2 and 3 Figure 4 and 5 Figure 6 and 7 Figure 8
Pole of Luuya’as Figure 1
Pole of Luuya’as Figure 2
Pole of Luuya’as Figure 3
Pole of Luuya’as Figure 4
Pole of Luuya’as Figure 5

G̱anii diyeet w’itkw ahl hlig̱ooḵt

K’a-w’iila’ihl G̱alts’ap Gitwinksihlkw gi- k’uhl. Gip’pil wil t’apmihlt. Ksgalanim wil t’ap mihlt, wil k’ii jaga lukw diit ahl Hlaxwhl’yansh, ganhl Gwinaha, aanu galax̱dilihl Galts’ap. Hla jijok sim’oogit ahl Gwin’aaha, n’i wilt japt diit pts’aan wat ahl Spa Smax. Nihl Sim’oogit Wii Seeks Gitspuudwada an gahlkwt, Giskaast nit. Hilmoomin Sim’oogit Niislisyan, Lax̱ Gibuu n’it. Ganhl k’yoohl wila’askws Wii Seeks, N’iikwax̱hast wat, Giskaast nit. Gitwinksihlkw wil sa bakhl simgigat dip tgun. Gwin’aaha wil hitkwhl pts’an tgun. T’ap x̱o’olt t’im ḵayx duhux ḵayx gan’agwihl pts’aanim spasmax tgun.

1929 wilt woot dit. N’ii wilt Giikwihl Museum of the American Indian ahl New York. N’i wilt gwilks giikwihl Canadian Museum, ii N’ii wil hitkwit sat tgun ahl Canadian Museum of Civilization ahl Ottawa.

Hli adawaag̱ahl adoḵs

1. X̱sgaak
(saa-kw’ootkwhl tḵ’al-n̓ii-huksgwit ahl pts’aan tgun g̱ooḵhl dimt giikwhl British Museum)

2. Gibilx̱
3. X̱sgaak

4. Ts’imilx
(N̓ii-t’aahl hlguuhlkwhl ts’imilx lax̱- hak’yo’os Nox̱t)

Sa hlo’o gat g̱anhl naks dim siilin̓iskw diit. G̱o’odiit wil t’aahl t’ax̱ wayt gigeenix n̓i wil joḵdiit. Iit jap diit wilbag̱an, n̓i wil lu wan diit. Gwiix siilin̓iskwhl naks hanaḵ’, adigwil daaw̓ihl siilinhl nag̱ats’ee ganhl hlig̱a ts’uuhl yat’iskw. Tx̱aa n̓iks w̓itkwt wil k’ii lu dabihl aax̱kw t’aat ts’o’odihl jak’wiskw dibagwit. Kii’ihl wilt ii ligi gilp’il oo ligi gwilal̓hl sa k’wootkw nakst. Ii w̓agatkwt nakst ahl g̱a n̓agwihl k’ootkwt, aḵhl ligi k’uhl didalg̱at ii akhl ax̱mawit.

N̓iwil y̓eg̱a yeet lax̱ ts’eehl t’ax̱, Wil k’ii sitaama’am hadiks tsim t’ax̱. Sim n̓iwil g̱alaanhl naks wil k’ii tsim t’ax̱ g̱o’ot. Adigwil lu joḵt ahl ts’im t’ax̱ tx̱aa niks sa,

Hla k’ii’ihl huxw w̓itkwhl naks ahl wil siilin̓iskwt ii nidiit w̓at. Lap nndahl gigil̓it awa’ahl wilp diit ii nidiit w̓at. N̓iwil y̓ag̱a yeet lax̱ ts’eehl t’ax̱ gigiil̓ihl naks, n̓iwilt w̓ahl hla wil gwiis ts’imilx naks ts’im t’ax̱.

Aam wilt da’aḵhlkwt didalḵ ts’imilx tgus naks. Niwilt mahlihl g̱as g̱oohl w̓agatkwt g̱a n̓agwihl k’uhl k’ayoolt, iit sit’aama’am hadiks, ii g̱ani lu wilt ahl ts’im aks. N̓iwil hla ḵ’ap sigwiis ts’imilxt, nidit da’ḵhlkw dim huxw luyaltkwt ahl saḵ’ab dihl gat.

N̓ag̱an wilhl nimdii ga’ahl gadim ts’imilx, m̓ax haanaḵ’am ts’milx.

5. Gadim ts’im-aks
Yukwhl lukwhl Lax̱sgiik sim gik’uuhl bakw diit ahl wayt anu g̱a gigeenihl wil joḵhl Didoo. Wayt gisa geets dim g̱o’odiit awahl ḵ’ali aksim Lisims. Yukwhl n̓ii wildiit lax̱ aks, iit n̓ii w̓adiit wil liks gigat luwilim ts̱im aks. Hla adawaag̱ahl gadim ts’im aks. Ga’adiit tgus galaanhl hliskwt guuhl nax̱nog̱am tx̱uux Gunas.

Da’akhl diit gidiguut diit tx̱uux iit ḵ’uts diit dim wila da’akhlkw diit hli smaxs Gunas. Hliskwt simihl diit hli lulaḵs Gunas. Wil k’ii gisa waax diit, g̱ooḵhl dimt w̓adit awahl Cape Fox, n̓i wilt ga’adit wil gabinhl w̓ii hagwil̓ooḵan ts’im aks. Hugayx̱at gat sim nn̓iil̓ukwhl g̱ist, hugax̱at wil hiitkwhl agu. Leex̱ dax̱ doog̱at hoon ganhl luwilim ts’im aks, yukwt giipt.

N̓iwil ayawaatkwhl t’imlaanit! Waaxsim̓ nidi aam jit guudim̓ w̓ii hagwil̓ooḵ tgus. Galaanhl sat tgus ii ayuks diit ahl hagwil̓ooḵam ts’im aks.

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The Bears’ Den totem pole was erected at Gwin’aaha around the year 1900 and carved by Chief Wii Seeks (“Huge Sparkling Star”) of the Killer Whale tribe along with his helper, Chief Niislisyan of the Wolf tribe (owner and master of personal slave by the name of Y’an, “Leonard Douglas”) and N’iikwaxhast (“Fire weed all around”) of the Killer Whale tribe of Wii Seeks house. These carvers were originally from Gitwinksihlkw.

The Bears’ Den pole was purchased in 1929 by the Museum of the American Indian in New York. The National Museum of Canada purchased it from the MAI in 1977 and it now stands in the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Ottawa.

Crest Stories:

1. Eagle
(detached carving – it disappeared before this pole was purchased by the British Museum)

2. Gibilx̱
3. Eagle

4. Beavers
(mother with young beaver on her back)

A man and his wife travelled to a lake far to the north to hunt, and they camped there. They built a loghouse and lived there. The man was a great hunter. He always hunted for racoons and other fur-bearing animals. When he arrived home with his animals, he spent his nights skinning them. Sometimes he would be gone for two or three days, and his wife would be lonely while he was gone. She had nobody to talk with and nothing to do.

She started going down to sit beside the lake. Eventually she started swimming each day, as soon as her husband had left. She began spending more time each day in the lake, until she literally lived in the lake.

One day her husband returned home and he couldn’t find her. He looked everywhere around the home, and he finally went to look for her beside the lake. Looking into the water, he discovered that she had turned into a beaver.

She spoke to him, telling him how lonely she had been and how she had spent all of her time in the water while he was gone. She explained that she had turned into a beaver as a result, and she could not become human again.

The Nisg̱a’a people say this is why it is difficult to find male beavers today. They are almost always female.

5. Man Underneath
During the ancient migration of the Eagles down the coast of what is now southern Alaska, they had several strange encounters before they reached the Nass River. The story of Man Underneath, also known as Man of the Sea, took place after their kinsman Gunas had been eaten by a supernatural halibut.

They caught the halibut and cut it open to retrieve the body of Gunas. After they had cremated his body, they continued their migration southwards in their canoes. Near Cape Fox, they encountered a huge monstrous man with long hair standing like a statue in the water. He held a salmon in each hand and he was eating them.

One of the men in the stern of the canoe exclaimed, “Let us flee from here! He might devour all of us!” Thereafter Man Underneath became a crest of the Eagles.

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