William Henderson Jr.
Kwakwaka’wakw carver William Henderson Jr. was born and raised in Campbell River, British Columbia. William comes from a culturally devoted family. He began carving at age 24 and hasn’t looked back since. His role models are his Grandfather, renowned Master Carver Sam Henderson Sr. who comes from the Nak’wa’dakw Blunden Harbour, his father, renowned Master Carver Bill Henderson, and his older cousin Junior Henderson.
In the past few years William has started creating pieces for use during traditional potlatch ceremonies. William enjoys carving and watching his carvings come alive through song and dance, and he will continue to make more ceremonial pieces for all the people of the potlatch world.
William was initiated through his father Bill into the sacred Hamatsa society when he was 27 years old. William actively participates in feasts and potlaches that are hosted by his family, and is frequently invited to help other families. William helps keep the culture alive through dance, singing on the log, being an attendant at potlatches or rigging up masks for dancers. William puts his heart into keeping his culture alive.
Following in his father’s footsteps of always giving back and keeping his culture alive, William enjoys teaching the local kids in the community how to sing and dance. He volunteers every week at the local preschool to help lead the kids in song and dance in preparation for their yearly performances. He also frequents his own children’s classrooms to show them masks or to teach them new and old traditional songs.
William enjoys telling stories through his skills as a carver and he will continue to follow his heart and carve.