About Byron Jason Whitesides, Aleut Genealogy
I am a Curator that is dedicated almost exclusively to Native Alaskan genealogy. My personal background is primarily mixed between Caucasian and Alaska Native. My mother's ancestors were mostly Aleuts from Umnak Island, Attu and Atka, then later they moved around and went to St. Paul, Unalaska and Akutan. However, there is also Tlingit from Sitka, way back, just after the Russians took over, Sugpiaq of different areas, and Athabascan as well.
I love doing this research and learning about my family history. It's of major significance to me, as my mother was adopted out at birth and there were many things we had to learn on our own. However, I have always thought of myself as being Aleut. It's my embraced personal identity, as long as I can remember. I consider both Unangan and Sugpiaq to be Aleut and growing up, that's how people called themselves, either that or Russian-Aleut. All these other terms now are more or less the modern attempts at individual isolation in association with cultural pride for specific tribal entities. It's all Aleut to me.
My references, as well as photographs, come through my interaction with Native families, a tremendously large library of rare and out-of-print books in my personal collection, plus amazing records that were given to me by the Aleutian Pribilof Island Association http://www.apiai.org/ and the Native Village of Afognak http://www.afognak.org/ to support my endeavor to document our ancestors.
If you require assistance in researching your lineage or if you have photographs or data that you can provide to enhance the existing profiles, please contact me.
List of Geni Curators and geographical specialties: