Whale. (A whale found dead on a the beach.)
When the hunter finds a dead whale, he goes home to his house; and when he comes to the beach in front of his house, he stands up in the bow of his small hunting-canoe and promises a whale-feast to his people. Then his people learn that he has found a dead whale. He gives to his daughter the name Place-of-cutting-Blubber, for he invites them on her behalf.
Then the tribe make ready. They sharpen their butcher-knives that day. In the morning, when daylight comes, the whole tribe launch their small canoes for carrying whale-blubber. Their wives steer the canoes when they start.
He who found the dead whale goes ahead of his tribe. When they arrive at the place where the whale is lying, his father, if he has one, goes up to the whale with the daughter of the one who found the whale; that is, with Place-of-cutting-Blubber. They stand behind the neck of the whale; and when the guests arrive at the beach where the dead whale lies, his father speaks, and says, "O tribe! come and cut the blubber of the salmon of Place-of-cutting-Blubber, for it is very fat." Then he speaks again, calling the head chief of the tribe. He says, "You shall have for your dish the dorsal fin, Chief Place-of-Property;" that is if the Seaward-Dwellers are invited. Then he calls the common people.
His tribe goes ashore at once, and they stand at the right-hand side of the whale. They stand according to their seats at the feast; but Place-of-Property stand near the dorsal fin of the whale. The whale lies on it's belly, and (the head chief) holds in each hand a butcher-knife. He puts these on the back of the whale's neck, and measures one fathom. Then he moves backward, cutting along the two sides of the whale towards the tail, back of the dorsal fin. Then he stops.
The (people) cut around the neck of the whale, beginning at the back of the whale's head; and the one next in rank to Property-Place cuts off a piece of head; a fathom wide, beginning at the cut made by Property-Place, downward to the belly of the whale. The one next in rank cuts a piece of the same width, and all the men receive pieces of the same width as they cut off the blubber crosswise downward. As soon as all the blubber is off, the women cut a hole in the sin side of the whale, and cut off the inside fat. When it is all off, they put it aboard the canoes. Next they cutoff a piece of the tail of the whale; and when it is all off, they go home to their houses.
Then they unload the blubber and put it down above high-water mark. After it has all been taken up, the man takes a short board for cutting blubber. He puts it down, takes the blubber, and puts it on the board to be cut. He measures it so that it is cut in pieces four finger-widths wide. He continues this the whole length of the blubber. After a piece is off, he cuts it crosswise, so that it is half a finger-width thick. After it has all been cut up, he puts the pieces into a kettle for boiling.
She puts the kettle on the fire on the beach to try out the oil. He takes the tongs and stirs it , and he continues stirring it. His wife takes a box and places it by the side of the fire on which the oil is being tried out. She also takes a large shell of a horse-clam. When it boils up, she takes the large clam-shell and skims off the whale-oil and pours it into the box. She only stops when all the whale-oil is off the boiled blubber. Then she takes a large basket, takes the boiled blubber out of the kettle, and puts it into the basket.
When it is all in, she puts it down in the corner of the house. The people also take the oil-boxes at each end and another man puts them down in the corner of the house. (The owner's); wife takes cedar-bark, splits it into long strips, and carries it to the basket containing the boiled blubber, next to which she sits down.
Then she takes out one of the pieces of boiled blubber and she ties it in the middle with the cedar- bark. She takes another one and ties it in the middle. She continues doing so, and does not stop until the strips of split cedar-bark are all used up; and when it is done, it is in this way: [illustration of threaded string of blubber pieces ] Now, the name of the boiled blubber is changed and it is called "tied in the middle." After all this has been done, she hangs up the pieces over the fire of the house, and evaporates them until they are dry.
After they have been hanging therefor one month, she takes a small kettle and puts into it one string of blubber tied in the middle, together with the cedar-bark. She pours water on it; and when the water shows on the top, she puts it on the fire. After it has been boiling a long time, she takes it off. She takes a small dish and puts it down near the kettle in which the pieces tied in the middle have been cooked. She takes the tongs and takes hold of the boiled pieces and puts them into the small dish. After she has taken them all out of the kettle, she tries to eat it at once, while it is still hot, for it is tender while it is hot, but it gets tough when it gets cold.
After she has eaten enough, she puts away what is left; and when she wants to eat more, she takes her kettle, pours water into it, and puts it onthe fire of the house. When it begins to boil, she takes it off the fire. She takes the cold pieces of blubber tied in the middle and places them in the hot water; and when she thinks that they are hot, she takes them out with her tongs and places them in small dishes, and they eat it before it gets cold. After she has eaten enough, she puts it away, and she just heats it whenever she wants to eat of it. This is called "eating boiled blubber tied in the middle".