[Various locations in Alaska, Yukon Territory, and British Columbia, including Fairbanks, Dawson City, and Victoria. Before 1905]. 138 mounted silver gelatin or sepia photographs, about 2 x 2 inches to 4 x 4 inches, with a handful captioned in pencil, and ten clippings of published photographs. Oblong octavo. Contemporary black cloth over thin boards photograph album. Minor edge wear. Minor surface wear and chipping to some photos, some slightly bent. Overall very good. Item #WRCAM55708
A captivating collection of early Alaska photographs. Many of the locations in the photographs are discernible based either on the captions or from signage in the images themselves. Images feature locations in Fairbanks, Dawson City, Victoria, and the outer country. The album also includes original vernacular photographs of indigenous peoples (sitting on logs, posed against the landscape, or in canoes or kayaks), sled dogs, horse-drawn freight sleds, tented homes, flooded towns, log cabins, prospectors with gold pans, and two shots of prospectors standing behind a table stacked with gold bricks. There are also more lighthearted images, showing social life in Alaska at the time, including picnics, costume parties, men using six-shooters, early automobiles, baseball players in jerseys labeled "Buster," and more Other images show boat building, town views, forest scenes, coastlines, a logging scene, a shot of the steamboat Selkirk leaving Victoria, and more. Identified buildings include a "Government Telegraph," the "Customs" office, and several structures in Dawson City, namely St. Paul's Church, St. Andrews Church, the Dawson Amateur Athletic Association, and the Dawson City Museum and Old Territorial Administration Building. One photograph features a sign advertising "E.A. Suter...Nugget Work." E.A. Suter, a watchmaker, optician, and jeweler opened a storefront in Fairbanks during the Klondike Gold Rush. His brother opened another in Nome. Another photograph shows a man with a large megaphone in front of the Goetzman Photography Studio in Dawson City in the Yukon Territory. Henry J. Goetzman opened his photographic studio in 1898, and with the help of his wife Mary and daughter Edith, ran the studio during the Klondike Gold Rush. Our proposed date for the photographs in this album stems from the fact that the Goetzman Photography Studio was closed by 1904 after Henry sold the studio and its contents and moved to San Francisco. Early Alaskan and Yukon photography collections are growing ever more scarce in the market. The present album holds a wide range of activities from early Alaska and the Yukon Territory during the Klondike Gold Rush.