Thursday, November 19, 2009
Kamleika is a seal gut parka and the word comes from the Chukchi people. The Unangan name for the gut parka/rain coat is chagtalisax. Women would make this waterproof parka from using intestines from any large sea mammal. The men would wear this parka out hunting with a birdskin parka underneath to keep the hunters warm and dry. The hood and bottom of the parka had drawstrings on it. A hunter would tie his parka around the opening of his Kayak, so the water wouldn’t get into his kayak and he would tie his hood on very tightly, so water wouldn’t come in through the top of his parka around his neck. Gut parkas have not been worn since the early 1900s, after the 1940s skin clothing was no longer made. One elderly Unangax women said that she had a gut parka hanging on her wall in her house, but after the World War II evacuation in the 1940s it was gone.