Suzanna was born in 1915, a few hundred kilometers west of Baker Lake. For hundreds of years the Beverly caribou herd annually migrated to calving grounds in the region. To do so the herd had to cross the mighty Thelon River. It was here the Inuit eagerly awaited their arrival as the caribou were the life blood of the people.

During the 1940's, however, the caribou did not come. Suzanna, now married and with several children, was experiencing starvation along with her family. On one cold winter day Suzanna was about to go out to jig for fish when Hannah, her oldest daughter, stopped her. She said to her mother, "Make sure you pray mom, before you go out." This simple request from her daughter affected Suzanna deeply as she didn't think of such things normally. Her child asked this of her because they needed the food so badly. Suzanna did manage to catch one fish that day. It was only one fish but at the time was considered a large meal and it fed all four of them. Suzanna's emotions still surface when she recalls that desperate time over 60 years ago.

Suzanna's family included thirteen children of whom two were adopted. Her nine remaining children all live in the community of Baker Lake. Every spring Suzanna and several family members travel by snowmobile to their cabin on the other side of Baker Lake. Because in spring, the ice breaks up, they stay for 4 or 5 weeks or such time as they can return by boat.

Suzanna has an excellent sense of humor and When in town enjoys playing bingo, cards and watching television. Suzanna passed away May, 2007 at age 91.

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Suzanna Mautaritnaaq
Inuit, Baker Lake

Image size: 11 x 13 inches
Edition size: 575