[Various locations in Alaska: ca. 1915-1925]. Sixty-four leaves, illustrated with 358 original photographs, a mixture of vernacular and pre-produced images, ranging from thumbnail portraits to 6.25 x 8.25 inches, many with manuscript caption in white ink. Oblong folio. Contemporary brown leather photograph album, string tied. Moderate edge wear and scuffing to boards. A few leaves detached, some images missing, several photos worn, chipped, torn, or partially perished, most images in generally good shape. In a custom cloth clamshell box, gilt paper labels. Good. Item #2647
A unique assemblage of photographs most of which document life in Alaska in the early decades of the 20th century. The images show an eclectic mix of rural life in Alaska, including numerous clapboard houses and commercial buildings, various steamboats and steamships, hunting and mining scenes, work crews on the railroad, dog sledding teams, and indigenous peoples, as well as street-level views of cities such as Anchorage, Skagway, Haines, Seward, Ketchikan, Knik, and Juneau, plus shots of natural wonders such as the Mendenhall Glacier, the Skagway River, the Chitina River, and the river at Roe Point near Ketchikan. A couple of shots of an Anglo woman named "Effie" depict her in full indigenous dress, holding rudimentary snowshoes. Some of the professionally produced images feature a suspension bridge near Anchorage, a wolf dog in Seward, the burning of the P.J. Abler in Juneau in 1915, Standard Oil's depot in Juneau, the Tanana River Bridge, the B.M. Behrends Bank in Juneau, and the "Government Railroad" in Alaska.
Images of indigenous peoples include a woman with a walking stick burdened down with a large backpack and walking with a dog, a shot of two "Indian Women" at Alert Bay, and an image of totem poles at Alert Bay. The larger format images capture the Anchor Ice and Docks off Anchorage, snow plows digging out a frozen train somewhere in Alaska, a view of the Alameda steamship off the coast of Anchorage, a street view of a pair of houses in Anchorage, a shot of the A.E.C. Hospital in Anchorage, a striking view of Fourth Avenue in Anchorage on May Day 1917, and a rare view of downtown Anchorage with the street graded down while "preparing for the new 12 foot concrete sidewalks" in September 1917. A handful, but certainly the vast minority of the images capture scenes in the American West, in locations such as South Dakota, Minnesota, and Washington. An informative collection of images from a wide range of early-20th-century Alaska.