Tradition Bearers | Folkstreams

Tradition Bearers (1983)

About the Film

A documentary about Finnish American history and folk art expressed through the lives and repertories of our folk artists living in the western Great Lakes Region. Blending live oral history interviews with historical photos, the film tells a story of Finnish immigration, the life of the miner, lumberjack, and homesteader. Features an American-born lumberjack-accordionist and story teller, and immigrant weaver and wood sculptor. The folk culture presented in this film is the cement holding together the Finnish American community.


  • Sinking Creek Film Festival WinnerDistinguished Contribution to the Humanities


For licensing, film rights and permissions, contact Michael Loukinen, the distributor Up North Films, or Folkstreams.

Film Details

  • Film by: Michael Loukinen
  • Produced by: Michael Loukinen
  • Cinematographer: Kathleen Laughlin
  • Sound: Will Peecher
  • Editor: Mirek Janek
  • Other Credits: FOLKLORE CONSULTANTS: Yvonne Lockwood, Norman Niemi, John Berquist, Velma Doby, Fred Waisanen.
  • Funding: National Endowment For The Arts, Michigan Council For The Arts, Michigan Council For The Humanities, Minnesota Humanities Commission.
  • Original Format: Film: 16mm
  • © Northern Michigan University Production
  • 48mins, Color
  • Categories:
    Arts & Crafts, TraditionalCustomsEthnic & Immigrant CulturesMusicRegional CulturesRural LifeAging