Jacobson tells the story of the Northwest Coast Indians, from the first trek over the Bering Land Bridge to the formation of the Alaskan Native Brotherhood in this century, via a series of fictionalized figures designed to represent their eras. Thus ""Telkan (8000 B.C.) made an awkward thrust with the harpoon,"" ""Nelcaya (7000 B.C.) walked the glacial ridge,"" ""Wawassen often suggested that life itself came from the sea,"" ""Crippled Tye (100 A.D.) turned his talents to the sculptor's art,"" ""Chetliku (a Tlingit, of 1750) organized the trading party"" and his nephew ""Danewak (1800) held a potlatch for the married couple."" Intended to bring immediacy to the material, about all the device actually does is make it harder for the school child to extract the required information--which, in any case, is present here in very small doses and without much individual attention to the Haida, Kwakiutl, Nootka, and others listed here as ""Fishermen.