How the Chookaneidee Earned the Rights to Use the Devilfish as One of Their Clan Symbols

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Beneath the Waves

“There was a Devilfish that lived in the waters near Glacier Bay- Inian Islands. This giant Devilfish was swamping the canoes and claiming the lives of the Hoonah people as they traveled these waters. A Chookaneidee man named Kaa-Kooch decided to go after this Devilfish because too many lives had been taken. Kaa-Kooch and his brother-in-law set out to rid the waters of this danger.  When Kaa-Kooch and his brother-in-law got to the waters where this Devilfish roamed they baited the waters with the blood of a porpoise. Soon the Devilfish was making its way to them when Kaa-Kooch saw this, he took two Tlingit daggers and tied them to his hands, and dove in after the Devilfish. The waters were boiling and then went calm. The brother-in-law waited for some time with no sign of Kaa-Kooch. He went back to tell the people what happened. A few days later a Devilfish washed ashore. The people went to investigate. They noticed a man was wrapped inside the tentacles, and realized it was Kaa-Kooch. During the battle with the Devilfish Kaa-Kooch cut through the ink sack and got covered in the black ink. Kaa-Kooch managed to kill the Devilfish, but the Devilfish killed him too.

From this event and the sacrifice of life in our history. The Chookaneidee earned the right to use the Devilfish as one of our Clan symbols.” – Fred Fulmer