Archaeological Excavation

Tsimshian Society and Culture

Instruments of War
War Canoes
The Warrior
Wealth and Rank
Men's Activities
Women's Activities

Tsimshian Villages

Tsimshian Society and Culture



Raids by small groups of tribes from the interior driven by hunger posed a constant threat to the Tsimshian, as did major, but infrequent, raids by Haida and Tlingit from their islands to the west and north.

Kitwanga Fort - CD94-632-020 - K94-721 Model of Kitwanga Fort, by Arthur Price and Dr. G.F. MacDonald.

Tsimshian men built fort-like enclosures to protect their clans during times of invasion. The original Kitwanga Fort was built by the ancient warrior, Nekt, on a hill about 3 km north of the present village of Kitwanga. Nekt was a highly feared warrior who led raids against villages on the coast and on the Nass River. To defend against enemy raids, a fence of spiked logs was built around the five houses of his tribe. The logs could be released to roll down onto the invaders. The "man-crushing log" became a crest that was put on totem poles by some Kitwanga and Gitsegyukla families.