Alaska Products

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Native Art Facts

Oosik

(pronounced "ou'sick") is the Eskimo work for the walrus penile bone (baculum). These sturdy articles can be up to three feet long. Large ones were used as clubs by the Eskimo or used for making tools because the bone is so dense. They are an excellent conversation piece and the rich natural colors enhance its appeal to collectors everywhere. They became trade items in the 1949s on King Island when bored GI's stationed on the island asked Native carvers to carve animal heads on the oosik ends. Fran Tate, a Barrow, Alaska restaurant owner, presented Johnnie Carson with one on his show.

OOSIK—its a walrus thing.

Aurora Borealis

Aurora Borealis is a celestial phenomena generally associated with the nordic winter, symbol of the clear, frosty nights up in the north

The origin of Aurora lies in sudden violent outbursts of energy taking place at the sun's surface during which vast clouds of gas are thrown out into space. These clouds, which contain electrically charged particles—free electrons and protons—reach far out into the planets. When passing the earth some of the charged particles are caught by the magnetic field of the earth and are carried to two annular zones surrounding the earth, one of each of the magnetic poles.

When the particles reach the outer layers of the atmosphere, at an altitude of 100-200 kilometers, polar lights flare up—Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights in the northern hemisphere and Aurora Australis or Southern Lights in the southern hemisphere