spirit houses.

The Eklutna Historical Park is a cultural experience where visitors can learn about the history, culture and customs of the Dena’ina Athabascans and the influences of the Russian Orthodox traditions.

One of the most striking visuals upon arriving are these colorful Spirit Houses throughout the burial grounds.  They are a unique Athabascan tradition built by the family members after a persons death.  Some were marked with the Orthodox Christian Cross, some were elaborately decorated and others had begun to fall back into the earth.

Side note: the base of the Orthodix Christian Cross in some ways resembles a buoy to me & if you read earlier posts you know that the buoy is a recurring theme in my world…and as a way finding device it struck me as an appropriate marker of finding one’s way home.

The New St. Nicholas Church stands beside the log structure of the Old St. Nicholas Church and is currently used in services.

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