This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner Home Page About ANKN Publications Academic Programs Curriculum Resources Calendar of Events Announcements Site Index This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner This is part of the ANKN Banner
Native Pathways to Education
Alaska Native Cultural Resources
Indigenous Knowledge Systems
Indigenous Education Worldwide

Yup'ik RavenMarshall Cultural Atlas

This collection of student work is from Frank Keim's classes. He has wanted to share these works for others to use as an example of Culturally-based curriculum and documentation. These documents have been OCR-scanned. These are available for educational use only.





The Great Legend of Shawn Johnson

A long time ago there was a boy named Shawn Johnson. He was a nice boy with a good personality. But when Shawn was young his dad died of a Brown bear attack. His dad had owned a gold mine in Alaska. Before he died he had never told anyone where the mine was located.

One year when he was almost out of school Shawn planned to go to Alaska to search for his dad's old gold mine. He had lived in California all his life since his mother was a lawyer there. Shawn didn't know anything about Alaska so he went to the school library and looked it up.

He got so interested in it he forgot about his homework, As he was reading he started up a list of things to bring to Alaska. He decided all he needed was camping gear and extra clothes.

He was reading so much he also forgot the time. His mother was so worried she started to call Shawn's friends. It was getting so late Shawn had to check out the book.

After Shawn went home his mother was so angry at him she hit him on his back, but Shawn told his mother to calm down and not to worry about him because he wasn't a kid anymore.

Time passed while Shawn was getting ready for his big adventure to Alaska. All summer he saved up money for the trip. His mother also helped him with her savings.

When Shawn had enough money for a one way ticket to Alaska. He started his great adventure. From California he went to Anchorage, and then from Anchorage he went to search for his dad's lost gold mine.

He first went to a small village called Gold Village, located at the mouth of the Koyukuk River. It was called Gold Village because the village had been full of gold a long time ago. The boy went into the bars there and asked people if they had known his dad. Finally, a strange looking man noticed Shawn, and he came up to him and asked him his name. " Shawn Johnson, sir" he said and asked him if he heard of his father Alan Johnson? The man thought for a moment and said, "He used to be a gold miner, right?" Shawn said yes. The man who had introduced himself as David Walker, told Shawn more about his father.

Shawn was getting hungry so they decided to go to a place called the Klondike. It was a bar full of people drinking and eating. David's wife was there and he told her the boy was the son of Alan Johnson. She was so surprised she had to go over and say hello. Her name was Katherine, and she brought Shawn over to the table where they were sitting at.

After David had a couple of drinks he started talking about Shawn's father. He mentioned the times they had had fun together getting drunk. He also mentioned the times when they gold mined together. Right then Shawn asked him where his gold mine was. David said, "Why does that concern you so much?" Shawn replied, "I want to see what my father used to do back when he was alive." Then David told him things about his father that started making Shawn cry.

Finally, it was getting late and Shawn was getting tired and he needed a place to stay. Katherine asked him if he had a place to stay? Shawn said he needed a place for the night, and first thing in the morning he would get ready for his long journey. Before Shawn went to bed though he asked David if he could show him where the gold mine was. David said; "I already gave you instructions. Now you can follow them. I don't have to help you. You could make it on your own.

The next day Shawn got up very early and got ready for his adventure. Katherine made a big breakfast for him. But Shawn got concerned when he noticed that David was gone. He was just about to ask Katherine where he was when, all of a sudden he appeared at the front door. He said; "Well, kid, are you ready for your adventure? Since you are so young I decided to show you the way." Shawn couldn't believe his eyes. So After Shawn and David ate their breakfast, they both got ready together. They both brought their stuff dawn to the river and put their stuff in the boat. Then they took off up river towards the mountains. They traveled on the long river for about four hours when they decided to set up camp.

It was fall time and the days were getting shorter and shorter. They didn't have time to do anything fun because the daylight was too short. They walked and walked for days up through the mountains and through the woods. Finally they came to a little town full of joyful people. They decided to camp there one night.

The next day David told Shawn he could find the camp on his own now. But Shawn didn't want him to go, after what David had done for him. He begged David to continue walking to his dad's mine with him. So David agreed to continue the search for the mine. While they were walking David told the story about the bear that killed his father. His story sounded very scary. David warned Shawn to watch out or the bear that had killed his father.

Finally they reached Shawn's father's mine. Shawn was really interested in the mine operation. Near the mine was his dad's old cabin. A small stream was close by too. So he took a bath in the stream.

Days passed while they were both looking over the mine. Every night they both talked about the bear that had killed his father. Shawn heard about this bear so often he got tired of it. He felt so bad that he even cried a couple of times. He was also starting to get mad. One day he hollered so loud that it echoed all through the country. He swore he was going to kill the bear with his own hands.

Meanwhile they both had fun together exploring the camp. Shawn said his dad had good taste in living here. He thought it would be better than living in the city. It made him feel free, free of crime, people and the city itself.

One day though when they were digging in his dad's gold mine, Shawn thought he heard some noises outside of the mine. He quietly grabbed his hunting knife from his belt sheath. He was ready for the bear, but when he went out it was only David. Shawn didn't know that David had gone out to get some fresh air.

One day David went back to town for more food and other supplies, leaving Shawn at the mine to get things done. While Shawn was busy he heard noises, odd noises he had never heard before in his life. He was scared but he was ready for anything that might come out from the river or the trees.

All of a sudden the same bear that killed his father emerged from the trees near the mine, but Shawn was not scared of the bear. He hollered at the bear, saying he was not scared of the bear, and as the huge bear came closer and closer, so did Shawn. When the bear started to roar Shawn began to holler louder too.

Right there and then Shawn charged at the bear with his knife. He had hate in his eyes. Then they were fighting each other. The bear grabbed Shawn and threw him on his back. But Shawn jumped up, hollered very loud and went straight at the bear. The bear then struck Shawn in the stomach with his giant paw. He got Shawn in the right spot, raking a large hole in his abdomen. But while he charged; Shawn stuck his knife deep in the bear's throat. Blood was pouring from both of their wounds.

Less than half an hour later David came back and hollered for Shawn. There was no answer. He got really scared and started searching back and forth. He hollered again. While he was running around he found both Shawn and the bear behind the house. They were both lieing there suffering, bleeding to death. David went straight to Shawn. He was still alive but not for long. David began crying, saying, "Shawn you did what you wanted. The bear that killed your father is dead and you don't have to worry anymore." But less than five minutes later Shawn was dead too.

From that time on the Legend about Shawn and the bear was told all over the territory. Shawn was the most renowned boy of the day. He even had a plaque on his grave which described how brave he was. He will never be forgotten.

By Tina Papp

The Great Legend of Shawn Johnson

Bear Fire

Creative Stories
from the

From Galena to Barrow

- Flora May Evan

The Three Amigos

- Henry S. Manumik

The Great Legend of Shawn Johnson

- Tina Papp

Bear Struck

- Leslie Hunter Jr.

The Bear

- Palassa Sergie

The Magic Bear

- Marlene Papp

Austin and his friend the Bear Cub

- LaVerne Manumik


- Billy Waska

The Bear Who Never Learned His Lesson

- Carmen Pitka

The Bear

- Olga Moxie

The Bear

- Theresa George

Grizzly Bear

- Katherine Duny

The Bear Attack

- Fred Alstrom

An Adventurous Day

- Gerilyn Fitka

A lot of Bears

- Victor Shorty


- Ben Peteroff

The Human Who Ran With Bears

- Yvonne Evan

The Grizzly

- Chris Fitka

The Bear That Was Swimming Across

- Teresa George


- Garrett Evan

The Big Bear

- John Tikiun



Bear Fire
Stories and Poems
about Bears

by Marshall High School
Language Arts Classes
Spring, 1992


Produced by 
Information about Bears

Creative Stories from the Imagination

True Stories from Experience



Christmastime Tales
Stories real and imaginary about Christmas, Slavik, and the New Year
Winter, 1996
Christmastime Tales II
Stories about Christmas, Slavik, and the New Year
Winter, 1998
Christmastime Tales III
Stories about Christmas, Slavik, and the New Year
Winter, 2000
Summer Time Tails 1992 Summertime Tails II 1993 Summertime Tails III
Summertime Tails IV Fall, 1995 Summertime Tails V Fall, 1996 Summertime Tails VI Fall, 1997
Summertime Tails VII Fall, 1999 Signs of the Times November 1996 Creative Stories From Creative Imaginations
Mustang Mind Manglers - Stories of the Far Out, the Frightening and the Fantastic 1993 Yupik Gourmet - A Book of Recipes  
M&M Monthly    
Happy Moose Hunting! September Edition 1997 Happy Easter! March/April 1998 Merry Christmas December Edition 1997
Happy Valentine’s Day! February Edition 1998 Happy Easter! March/April Edition 2000 Happy Thanksgiving Nov. Edition, 1997
Happy Halloween October 1997 Edition Edible and Useful Plants of Scammon Bay Edible Plants of Hooper Bay 1981
The Flowers of Scammon Bay Alaska Poems of Hooper Bay Scammon Bay (Upward Bound Students)
Family Trees and the Buzzy Lord It takes a Village - A guide for parents May 1997 People in Our Community
Buildings and Personalities of Marshall Marshall Village PROFILE Qigeckalleq Pellullermeng ‘A Glimpse of the Past’
Raven’s Stories Spring 1995 Bird Stories from Scammon Bay The Sea Around Us
Ellamyua - The Great Weather - Stories about the Weather Spring 1996 Moose Fire - Stories and Poems about Moose November, 1998 Bears Bees and Bald Eagles Winter 1992-1993
Fish Fire and Water - Stories about fish, global warming and the future November, 1997 Wolf Fire - Stories and Poems about Wolves Bear Fire - Stories and Poems about Bears Spring, 1992



Go to University of AlaskaThe University of Alaska Fairbanks is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer, educational institution, and provider is a part of the University of Alaska system. Learn more about UA's notice of nondiscrimination.


Alaska Native Knowledge Network
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 756730
Fairbanks  AK 99775-6730
Phone (907) 474.1902
Fax (907) 474.1957
Questions or comments?
Last modified August 21, 2006