HUNTER AND LEADER

As is the case in many Inuit societies, leadership in Ahiarmiut society was determined not by inheritance, but through demonstrated ability as a provider and through strength of character. Within Ahiarmiut society Angulalik was recognized as an individual of exceptional skill and intelligence. Due to these traits people gravitated towards him and recognized his authority in decision making.

In his youth Angulalik experienced the replacement of traditional Inuit hunting technology with firearms. Therefore he was an expert with the bow and arrow, and he sometimes chose to use them well after they were effectively replaced by rifles. Angulalik's skill and consistent production as a hunter was key to his emergence as a leader among the Ahiarmiut. He continued to provide country foods for his family and dependents after he became a trader.

Angulalik's ability as a provider enabled him to support two wives. Having more than one spouse was a mark of influence and ability in traditional Inuit society, and Angulalik had two wives at a very young age. Later in life when he was running his own trading business he was truly a very affluent individual with his vast resources as a provider bringing with them a complementary level of influence with his followers.

ANGULALIK:

KITIKMEOT FUR TRADER

Inuit holding rifles over dead seals Angulalik in middle. (Northwest Territories Archives / N-1986-002: 0012)

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