Alaska Gold Rush photograph album (1898-1902)

Collection processed and finding aid created by William A. Lewis, December 2004, and Meg Hixon, April 2013
Graphics Division, William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan

Summary Information

Title: Alaska Gold Rush photograph album
Creator: Anonymous
Inclusive dates: 1898-1902
Extent: 1 volume
Abstract:
The Alaska Gold Rush photograph album contains approximately 300 photographic prints. Most photographs show scenery, people, and settlements in Alaska around the turn of the 20th century, as well as a small group of scenes from San Francisco, California.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu

Access and Use

Acquisition Information

2003. F-648.

Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copyright

Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information

Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.

Preferred Citation

Alaska Gold Rush photograph album, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan

History

This photograph album primarily contains pictures of scenery, people, and settlements in Alaska around the turn of the 20th century, during and just after the Klondike Gold Rush. Gold was first discovered near Juneau, Alaska, in 1880, and the discovery of gold deposits in the Klondike River in 1898 led to a large influx of prospectors to the Yukon, many of whom moved westward into Alaska.

Collection Scope and Content Note

The Alaska Gold Rush photograph album (25cm x 30cm, 92 pages) contains approximately 300 photographic prints. Around 280 prints, including around 270 mounted onto the album's pages and around 10 loose items laid into the volume, show settlements, natural scenery, and people in Alaska from 1898-1902. Settlements such as St. Michael, Dutch Harbor, and Dawson are shown, as are native settlements, tents, and log cabins; a few interior shots are present. Some of the buildings and people pictured were associated with the North American Transportation & Trading Company. Subjects include: United States military personnel, indigenous Alaskans, men and women (sometimes in heavy winter dress), landscape views, glaciers, native animals and other natural scenery, and military and civilian boats.

Most of the photographs are black-and-white prints, though the album also includes a small number of cyanotypes. Items of note include a small panorama (p. 14), a photograph taken at the "dawn of the century" (p. 7), and pictures of a totem pole (p. 77), an early telegraph pole (p. 81), and a hands-free pie-eating contest (p. 85). A partial manuscript list of captions, roughly contemporary with the photographs, is laid into the volume. The final four pages of the album contain small photographic prints of scenes from San Francisco, California, with a focus on missions and other architecture. Penciled captions accompany many of the album's prints, though many are difficult to read. The album has post binding with screw posts.

Subject Terms

Subjects:
  • Photographs shelf.
Subjects - Visual Materials:
  • Alaska.
  • Dutch Harbor (Alaska)
  • Glaciers--Alaska.
  • Gold rushes--Alaska--1890-1900.
  • Indians of North America--Alaska.
  • Indians of North America--Boats--Alaska.
  • Indians of North America--Clothing--Alaska.
  • Indians of North America--Dwellings--Alaska.
  • North American Transportation and Trading Company.
  • Saint Michael (Alaska)
  • San Francisco (Calif.)
  • Ships--Alaska--1890-1910.
  • Soldiers--United States.
  • Totem poles.
Genre Terms:
  • Cyanotypes--1890-1910.
  • Landscape photographs--1890-1910.
  • Photograph albums--1890-1910.
  • Photographic prints--1890-1910.

Contents List (Request Materials)

Request materials for use in the Clements Library
Container / Location Title
Volume   1 [A.2.1898.1]  
Alaska Gold Rush photograph album,  1898-1902 [series]

Additional Descriptive Data

Bibliography

Naske, Claus M. "Alaska." The Oxford Companion to United States History. Online edition. Paul Boyer, ed. Oxford University Press, 2001.