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Longhouse Update April 2012
lh_projectYesterday, a small work party travelled up to Camp Brinkley to begin restoring the hundreds of cedar planks saved from the old building. These boards will be cleaned, refinished, and used to face the new structure. This effort will continue at future Ordeals and work parties.

In other Longhouse news, the Longhouse Committee expects to have final permits in hand within two weeks. After more than 2 years, dozens of meetings, and thousands of pages of documentation, the project is becoming a reality.

But we still need your help. We have about $70,000 to go before construction can begin. If you've been waiting to make a donation, now is the time.
Old Photograph, New Mystery
black_fish_pole_missingRecently while doing research on the lost pole of the Talapus Tillicum Chapter lodge member B. Noonan shared some old photographs. In one of the old photographs was a totem pole that the lodge leadership had never seen before, nor has it been mentioned in any of the lodge records that are currently available. This is why we need your help!
We currently believe the pole is of a whale due to the blunt "wolf like" head, however the crest lacks a dominate dorsal fin and an obvious blowhole, so there is a chance it might be a stylized salmon. It was carved after 1963 and was lost before the mid 1980's. The bottom starts with a round tooth filled head then it is shaped like the side of a fish tapering to a flat vertical tail. There is a yellow painted vertebrate design on the sides, and a carving on top of the back that is hard to discern from the photo. It almost looks like a chain of frogs.

If you have any information or more photographs concerning this lost relic please let us know at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
The pole on the right is the now lost Talapus Tillicum Pole that was original subject of the research.
Thank you for your help in preserving the lodge's history!
Lodge Breaks Ground on Longhouse
2010fallordeal001Almost eight years after the old longhouse was lovingly deconstructed, Saturday September 11th marked a huge step forward in building its replacement. Following the Ordeal ceremony hundreds of lodge members, friends and family watched as ground was broken in the construction of the new larger structure.

The morning saw candidates and current arrowmen working together to clear the longhouse site in preparations for that evening's festivities. It was a day of ceremony as all persons in camp gathered and paused at 8:46 am at the longhouse site in a moving flag ceremony to remember those who had perished on September 11th 2001. Work then continued until early afternoon.

The groundbreaking was officially started at 5:30 by Master of Ceremonies Chris Z calling the group together and thanking the special guests in attendance. After an invocation from Inductions Vice Chief Logan C, Lodge Chief Brian S gave a history of the project and spoke of the importance of the longhouse to the 1st Peoples of the Northwest Coast.

Brian then performed the Chief's Welcome Dance with help from the lodge's ceremonies team. This special dance is historically the welcoming dance of the northern First Peoples such as the Tlingit, Tsimshian, Heiltsuk and Haida. It is performed by the Chief to honor the guests at a gathering. The dancer wears an elaborate headdress featuring a carved frontlet that displays the crest of his clan inlaid with abalone. Flicker feathers may also adorn the head. A crown of walrus whiskers, sea lion whiskers, or whale baleen tops the frontlet. Eagle down is then nestled inside the crown. During the dance, the chief's head bobs up and down to the steady rhythm of the drums, causing the down feathers to spill from the crown and float to the ground at the guests' feet. This action symbolizes peace and tranquility and is a welcoming gesture to honor the guests. The headdress is finished with a long train of ermine skins in their winter color of white. The T'Kope Kwiskwis lodge received the privilege to perform this dance in 1961 from the Chilkat Dancers of Haines, Alaska. Reintroduced to the lodge in 1990, it has been performed annually by the lodge chief since. This was by far the most important performance of the dance since the longhouse was taken down.

Bruce Anderson the Chief Architect for the project explained the look and makeup of the new building; how the new trusses will run the length of the longhouse, similar to those found in Canada and Alaska. This design provides a more open feel, and will not limit views of the audience. Then Sharon Moulds, the Scout executive for Chief Seattle Council and the Supreme Chief of the Fire spoke to the audience about service and helpi2010fallordeal002ng others.

The highlight of the ceremony was the blessing of the site and dedication of the Hillaire Entrance pole. Joe Hillaire was a master Lummi carver and a friend of the lodge. His daughter, Lummi Elder and author Pauline Hillaire, who conducted a ceremony of blessing and thanks at the de-construction of the old longhouse, was scheduled to be at the groundbreaking but regrettably could not make it due to health reasons. Pauline's daughter Debbie Covington Paul and Master Carver Felix Solomon represented the Hillaire family and conducted the blessing of the site and of the newly named Hillaire entrance pole.

The event culminated in the actual ground breaking, where members of the lodge and special guests, including the youngest member, who had just gone through his ordeal, turned the loam to signify the start of next phase of the project.

We would like to thank the Longhouse Committee especially the Chairman Peter H and Lodge Chief Brian S., members of the Lodge Ceremonies team, Steve Lum for providing the sound system, Mike Gaylord and Mike Kelly for providing the flag pole at the site for the 9/11 observance, our good friends Felix Solomon, Debbie Covington Paul and Pauline Hillaire for their essential contributions to the event, Randy Guzzardo who oversaw the tasty prime rib feast, our distinguished guests from the Chief Seattle Council including Sharron Moulds, Joyce Johnson for creating the unique memento of the day and the new Ordeal members and Ordeal Staff who worked hard all day to make this ceremony a reality.

Only $70 K Left to Go on Longhouse!
lh_postersmall001At the Lodge Banquet it was revealed by Longhouse Committee Chairman Peter H that the lodge was only $70,000 short of our goal of $600,000 to build the new longhouse at Camp Pigott! We need only 70k until the eight year dream is a reality. To spur the final wave of support former Lodge Adviser and artist Don Van Wieringen released the final 200 copies of the poster used to promote the longhouse repair work in 1992. These posters will go the first 200 people who donate $100 in new money to the project. Several have already been claimed! When they are gone they are gone!

Unselfish leadership and service have brought us to within $70,000 of our goal to start construction this spring. Your timely contribution and support can assure restoration of our solemn place of friendship. Please join us now in this extraordinary opportunity and consider a tax deductible donation to the Longhouse fund. Your gift will help secure and sustain this treasured resource that Scouts of today and tomorrow can share with experience like no other.

Donate Now

Longhouse Update May 2010

Brothers, the Longhouse Committee has been working hard and can report great progress towards our goal. The site evaluations for the preliminary permit requirements have been completed. These evaluations include wetland studies, geo-testing and perc tests. Permit building plans are complete, and this will allow us to move ahead in the permit application with the county. We have selected several large and gracious cedar trees that will become the main support columns in the building. Soon we will be honored to have the trees blessed by our friends in the 1st Nations community before they are taken down. This is an important link from the old to the new with sensitivity to Native American customs.

Unselfish leadership and service have brought us to within $70,000 of our goal to start construction this spring. Your timely contribution and support can assure restoration of our solemn place of friendship. Please join us now in this extraordinary opportunity and consider a tax deductible donation to the Longhouse fund. Your gift will help secure and sustain this treasured resource that Scouts of today and tomorrow can share with experience like no other.

Thank you for your support and stay tuned for more updates.

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