THE FIRST question, I suppose, that interests the normal person in connection with the economic life of a civilization is: What do the people do to make a living? There are two fundamental methods of making a living. It may be made directly from nature, as the so-called primitive races have chiefly done, or it may be made indirectly from nature, as the so-called civilized peoples have customarily arranged it. In the latter case some system of exchange, commonly money, is required, and the chief object in making a living is not to acquire directly the thing you need but to acquire the thing with which you can buy the thing you need.
In the Koyukuk the direct and the indirect method of making a living are intermingled. On the whole the natives are more inclined to the former and the whites to the latter method. But there is not an adult native in the upper Koyukuk who has not been paid hundreds of dollars in cash for work he has done, and there is not a white person who has not many times made his living directly by hunting, trapping, fishing, gardening, berrying, and cutting his own fuel wood. Thus at the start it is necessary to emphasize that nobody makes his living in only one way.
Consequently, in listing the occupations of the region there is some confusion. Among the Eskimos most of the people