Rare Aluutiq quiver now part of Kodiak Museum

Kodiak’s Alutiiq Museum recently acquired a quiver that is a rare example of Alutiiq craftsmanship. Sven Haakanson is Curator of Native American Anthropology at the Burke Museum and recently passed the quiver – and the arrow that comes with it – along to the Alutiiq Museum. Haakanson is from Old Harbor and served as the Alutiiq Museum executive director before moving to Seattle to work at the Burke Museum and teach at the University of Washington. Haakanson said the King family from Kodiak brought the quiver and arrow to the Burke Museum, and he recognized the quiver as a rare find.

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Sven Haakonson (Photo courtesy of the MacArthur Foundation)
Sven Haakonson (Photo courtesy of the MacArthur Foundation)

“Most of the quiver’s I’ve seen are circular,” said Haakanson. “This one was square, beautifully made and tied and you guys check it out here in Kodiak. But it should go home ‘cause it’s so rare, and it would be a nice addition to the kayak they’re getting from the Peabody museum, the warrior’s kayak, ‘cause those quivers were used when they were kayaking. They were originally made to hold sea otter darts, so that the sea otter darts – so they don’t get damaged on the kayak. You’d be able to pull them out, shoot the sea otter, and keep going.”]

Haakansan said the arrow would have been used for target practice. The museum may put the quiver and arrow on display this summer.