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Voices of the Wild Earth: "Asking the Stones to Speak" Redux

The Idaho Mythweaver revisits the creation story of the Ktunaxa (Kootenai) people

On this episode from the Voices of the Wild Earth series, the Idaho Mythweaver revisits archival audio footage about the creation story of the Ktunaxa (Kootenai) people.

First produced in 2005, this episode features the late Basil White of the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho (Ktunaxa band in Bonners Ferry, Idaho) telling their origin story, which involves the creation and naming of geographical places from Kootenay Lake in B.C., Canada, the Kootenai River, to Spokane and beyond all the way to Seattle.

The myth features a battle with the left-handed Sky People and Muskrat, a telluric challenge to kill a sea monster under Woodpecker, the Chief, and helping birds like Killdeer and Heron, Coyote and Wolf. Ultimately the monster is destroyed, which then creates the four races of humans, including the Indian peoples of our region, from its body.

Ethnographer Dr. Rodney Frey introduces the story.