Alaska Film Archives

A Letter for Debra Anne
A Letter for Debra Anne
AAF-13990 and AAF-13991 are presented by the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Indian Affairs. Both films contain identical scenes with AAF-13990 narrated in English and AAF-13991 narrated in Yupik. The program is about the development of the Primary Eskimo Program (PEP), a bilingual language program introduced in Yupik-speaking Alaska Native communities of southwest Alaska. Opening credits list Area Director Clarence Antioquia, Assistant Area Director Emil Kowalczyk, Federal Program Director William Menojah, Jr., Title 1 Director Willard Walters, Agency Superintendent of Education S. William Benton, and Education Specialist Calvin Lundy. Cinematographer is Frank Johnson. Editor is Guy Bishop. Storyteller is John Haymer. Yupik interpreter is Oscar Alexie. The film is written and directed by Jerry Warner, and it's produced by Jerry Warner and Associates. The program contains scenes in Kwethluk and Akiachak, Alaska, including elementary-aged students learning to speak, read, and write in both Yupik and English. In 2018, Juliana Carlson, originally from Kwethluk, identified the following individuals who appear in the film: Ethel Peter (at 01:42, center girl with red and black shirt); Deborah, Mabel or Mary Constantine (at 02:16); Deborah Ann Michael of Kwethluk (at 5:07); the Kwethluk First Grade class including teacher Lillian Michael McGill, John Andrew, Jr., Paul Jackson, Anastasia Michael, Wassiliie Paul, Juliana Guy, Matthew Dillon, Minnie Nicori, William Nicolai and Olga Nick (at 05:41); Kwethluk First Graders John Andrew, Jr. and Juliana Guy (at 06:16); Lynn Jones (at 07:24); Alice Alexie, Veronica Michael (left), and Daniel Jackson (at 07:58); Samson Mann and Matthew Nicori (at 17:39); Kwethluk BIA first grade teacher Lillian Michael McGill (at 19:22); James Michael, Lillian Michael and Lola Evan (at 22:47); Sophie Owens Lowery (at 23:21); Kwethluk 3rd and 4th Graders (at 23:55); Elena Pasitnal (left), Elena Chimegalrea (center), and Marla Evan (right) (at 24:29); Deborah Michael of Kwethluk (at 26:46); and Wassillie Paul of Kwethluk (at 27:20).
Education in Eskimo
Education in Eskimo
AAF-14564 and AAF-14565 are films that contain identical scenes with AAF-14564 narrated in English and AAF-14565 narrated in Yupik. The film was produced by the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Indian Affairs, Juneau Area Office, to demonstrate approaches to bi-lingual education in Alaska. The program contains scenes of daily life and school in Akiachak, Alaska, along the lower Kuskokwim River. Teachers are shown instructing students of various ages and are interviewed about the process of providing education in both Yupik and English. The film also contains scenes of people hauling water in winter, girls using story knives, people listening to a radio, men repairing a snowmachine, boys with a dog team, students saying the Pledge of Allegiance in school, and men and women at a school board meeting. University of Alaska educators and local instructors create new instructional materials. Students sing a song to the tune of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” in Yupik. The film credits list the following names: teachers Mary Ann Lomack, Molly Lomack, and Bernadine Featherly; technical assistants Anna Alexie, Sophie Parks, Marie Nick, Elizabeth Worm, Molly Lomack, Susan Smalley, Mary Ann Lomack, Bernardine Featherly, and Mary Perela; consultants Warren Tiffany and Walter T. Featherly of the BIA and Irene Reed of University of Alaska Eskimo Language Workshop; narrator Marx Hartman; sound technician Lauchy McMillan; writer Richard Hawk of University of Washington; cameraman and editor Thomas Williams; and producer and director Donald J. Morrow. Local community members identified the following individuals in 2018: Actor Henry Lomack, translators Pascal Afgan and Ted Brink, and Yup’ik narrator Rev. Teddy Brink.