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Accession number: 
Production Years: 
1925 to 1928
Release Year: 


Film Properties: 
Length (feet): 
790 (35mm)
Length (minutes): 
Holding Institutions: 

Library and Archives Canada: 35mm, VHS, digibeta.
"In March 1920, the Inuit Nuqallaq (called Nookudlah in the film) shot and killed the white Newfoundland trader Robert S. Janes. Janes was notorious for his mistreatment of natives and this action would have been sanctioned by the elders under native law if the victim were deemed a danger to the community. Nuqallaq was arrested by RCMP Staff-Sergeant A. H. Joy in the summer of 1921. In August 1923, a white court, sitting in Pond Inlet, sentenced him to ten years hard labour. This was to some extent intended to impress on the native people the importance and power of the white man's law and at the same time reenforce Canadian sovereignty over the Arctic. After serving two years of his sentence in Stoney Mountain penitentiary in Manitoba, dying of tuberculosis, he was released. He returned to Pond Inlet with the Canadian Government Eastern Arctic Expedition aboard the CGS Arctic in the summer of 1925. None of the above is explained in the film: an intertitle reads in part "...Mr. Nookudlah, home again after a visit of many moons in the strange country of the White Man...". An earlier title mentions the Canadian Government OOMIAKSHUA, the Inuktitut word for big boat, rather than using the name of the ship, ARCTIC. What follows are scenes of Nuqallaq's homecoming as well as native life in general. Some of these scenes are certainly posed for the camera rather than purely documentary. "

Edited by Richard Finnie in 1928 from 1925 Arctic Expedition footage in response to a request for a film to be shown on lecture and singing tours given by Juliette Gaulthier.