Three Issues of the Short-Lived Dyea Trail Newspaper, 1898. GOLD RUSH ALASKA.
Three Issues of the Short-Lived Dyea Trail Newspaper, 1898

Three Issues of the Short-Lived Dyea Trail Newspaper, 1898

Dyea, AK: Trail Printing Company, 1898.

Volume 1, Numbers. 3, 7, and 8. Each 8 pp, 11 x 15 inches, with horizontal fold at center. Light toning, a few chips and short tears to the margins; very good.

The Dyea Trail was founded on January 12, 1898, by George T. Ulmer, whose brother, Charles, published several newspapers in Washington State. As one of the salt water ports closest to the Klondike, Dyea was abuzz with activity at the time, with thousands of stampeders landing there to pick up the Chilkoot Trail to the gold fields. The weekly Dyea Trail carried almost exclusively local news and reports of developments in other parts of the Pacific Northwest that would be of interest to miners. These three issues include a graphic account of the town's first serious fire, a report on Chilkoot Trail conditions and their effect on the cost of getting to the Yukon, details of new regulations on the importation of merchandise to the Klondike, and an article on the anticipated arrival of 500 Norwegian reindeer that were to carry relief supplies to starving miners in Dawson. Shorter entries note the arrival of steamships, eviction of claim jumpers, opening of new businesses, social club meetings, etc. Each issue also carries dozens of advertisements for local real estate, restaurants, saloons, hotels, banks, pack trains, outfitters, and more. Despite this abundance of advertisers, Ulmer apparently found the newspaper business unsustainable, for it was not long before he had loaded up his press and moved to Juneau. The exact date of the paper's demise is uncertain, but in a February 1899 issue of the trade journal Printer's Ink, it was declared "now dead." Dyea itself would all but disappear within another year, after the opening of the White Pass & Yukon Route Railway made Skagway the starting point for nearly all trips to the gold fields.

Item #19774

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