Newspaper Abstracts

Nome Census Area,


If you have any records to add or a correction, please send to Trish Elliott-Kashima


Abstracts from Chronicling America, Library of Congress


The Chillicothe Daily Gazette, Wens Nov 29, 1899

Letter from Mr Pearl Watt to his mother:

Nome Alaska, Oct 31, 1899:

My Dear Mother; Much to our surprise, the British steamer "Alpha" sailed into the harbor the other day with four tons of US Mail.  We had put our paper cases

out of doors and were fixing up for the winter, so the arrival was rather inconvenient.  But we can and are willing to give almost any price to get mail in this country so your letter of Oct 2nd amply repaid me for the extra work attached to the handling of so much mail.  One package with Enquirer and Tribune also came.  Have sent out two registered letters with some $25 worth of nuggets.  Hope you received them ok. What do you think of them? You will notice one small piece of quartz in the lot.  The prospects are good for some rich quartz discoveries here another season.  I suppose you think that gold after all is a rather small thing to draw thousands of men away from civilization? But "tis money that makes the mare go" and that what we're here for.  Had a very novel but decidedly pleasant experience Sunday night.  After church was introduced to a miss, and had the pleasure of seeing her home and making a short call.  Possibly you don't see anything new or novel about this, but you must remember that this was the first young lady, unmarried, that I have talked to since the 19 May 1898, more than 17 months ago.  There are only a few in town and it is hard to say how long they will last.  Two have been married since their arrival here a week ago.  We are to organize a literary society tonight and we hope to get both great pleasure and benefit from it this winter.  We are now fixed up for the winter.  The office has been partitioned off and we have a living room 8x21.  We have our trunks in one corner, cook stove in the other and a heating stove in the middle of the room,  There will be three of us here, G H Rhodes, who is acting postmaster, J H Wright, the brother of the one who is postmaster and myself.  As I told you before, I have an all winter's job but will leave it next spring.  It has frozen up once more, this time for good, I hope, and everybody is feeling better.  We have some good winds here, and they will be the most disagreeable feature of the winter.  They come through here about 60 miles an hour, and billed direct from the North Pole so you can imagine what they are.  Sent you a copy of the "Nome Gold Digger" in letter cover, Oct 29.  Hope you received it ok.  You will notice a few of the prices have gone down since the date of the bill of fare I sent you but that was caused by the unexpected arrival of the "Alpha".  They will soon go up far above the prices I sent you.  I nearly forgot to tell you how much I enjoyed the souvenir postals you sent me.  The different scenes, all so easily recognized, made me spend more time in thinking of Chillicothe than I had devoted to it in the past year.  I have shown them to several friends here, and they all think Chillicothe must be a very pretty place.  The pictures of Second and Bridge streets with the rows of trees are the ones that catch the eyes of the people here, where trees are conspicuous by their absence.  Even through the western cities there are but very few that can match Chillicothe when it comes to the trees along the street.  If you folks only knew it, those same trees are Chillicothe's chief charm and you will do well to spare all the trees you have and plant some more.



The Fairmount News, Fairmount, Indiana; 3 May 1900

The Postoffice Department has made arrangements for providing a first class money order system for Cape Nome, Alaska



"Douglas Island News", July 25, 1900 (Douglas City, Alaska)

It is estimated by those competent to judge that there are at present 40,000 people in Nome.


Four persons last winter were successful in making the trip over the ice on bicycles from Dawson to Nome.



The Bemidji Pioneer, July 1900 (Bemidji, Beltrami County, Minnesota)

Dr Everly is a woman surgeon, the first to begin the practice of medicine in Nome.


Fred Kotch has the distinction of being the first man in Nome to cultivate garden truck.  On his lot he now has growing

 vigorously lettuce, radishes and the like.


Frank Luthener, a young man who arrived in Nome about ten days ago, was shot and killed Wednesday in the Crotto

saloon by B Kinright. Kinright is said to be a "dope fiend" and it is claimed that his mind was unbalanced.


As a result of a shooting affray over a tow lot Monday evening Hank Lucas and T J Lyne are dead (in Nome)



The San Francisco Call, 31 Aug 1900

Alaskan District Judge Noyes Awakens Wrath of Mine Owners at Nome by Astonishing Acts

Names receiver for five properties directly upon arrival at the Cape.  Bitter talk of collusion and threats of impeachment soon

follow.  Fists are shaken, pistols may flash and a Federal Judge may be impeached because of the surprising acts of

Arthur P Noyes who wears the judicial ermine in Alaska.  Arriving at Nome on the 21st day of last July, he in two days threw into

the hands of a receiver the cream of the Nome mining claims.  Now in a little over a month, from his first assumption of

judicial duties at Nome wealthy men and reputable attorneys are talking of trying to oust him from the bench and are making

most remarkable statements, many of which are actionable if the entire truth cannot be conclusively demonstrated.


There was a remarkable scene at Nome in the judicial presence, as related in official records of the proceedings one day early.

In August, Attorney Sam Knight of this city, representing the Wild Goose Mining and tracing Company, of which C D Lane is

the president, accused Judge Noyes in open court of appointing a receiver for the company's claims before any, petition for

such appointment had been filed.


"I desire to prove, if the court please" said Knight, "that the papers were not filed in this case until after an order had been, made

appointing a receiver, and further, that no process was issued at that time, and further; that no process was issued at that time

nd that so far as I know, it has not been issued at this time."


This took place Aug 3, eleven days after Alexander McKenzie, the personal friend of Judge Noyes, has by him been appointed receiver

in five instances.  No move was made to strongly dispute Knights assertions.  Attorney Hume, who represented the receiver, admitted that no

 summons had been placed in the hands of an officer.  He explained that the petition for, a receiver had not been filed before the appointment

 was made because the clerk of the court could not be found.  These statements are all in the transcript of the proceedings that has just been

received by the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Dist in this city.


Knight was not satisfield that there was any legitimate reason for this unjudicial haste and any legitimate reason for this unjudicial haste, and he went,

on as follows: "I think that your Honor, will agree as to the fact that the bill of complaint was presented to your Honor on the afternoon of the 23d day

of July, and that your Honor thereafter made an order appointing a receiver and the papers were ' subsequently—that evening— handed  to the

deputy clerk of the court for filing, but that no process was issued in the case in which I now appear, involving claim No. 2 below, Nos. 10 and 11

above arid No. 1 Nackkela."

Millions of dollars' worth of property was placed in Alexander McKenzie's hands, as receiver, in one day. One of these properties has a record

of yielding $15,000 per day. The bond in each of five receiverships' given to McKenzie was placed by Judge Noyes at $5000.  According to

authentic advices the persons and companies who were operating the mines when McKenzie was put in possession were greatly surprised.

Nineteen days later, as evidenced by the transcript. Judge ' Noyes had decided that there was no appeal from his order appointing McKenzie

in the suit- of Robert Chipps vs. Jafet Lunderberg, Erik O. Lindblom and John Brynteson. He reached the same conclusion in four other cases,

which were as follows: 0. Jose Comtois vs. P. H. Anderson, Herbert H. Webster vs. Michael J Nackkela, Olc Klemetsen and Ole K. Hatta;  I. F.

Melsing, H. L. Blake, D. B. Libby, W. . T. Hume and O. P. Hubbara vs. John P. Tornases; Henry Rogers vs. William A. Kjellman. C. D. Lane and

the Wild Goose Mining and Trading Company.


There is more on this article at this link



"Douglas Island News", October 16, 1901 (Douglas City, Alaska)

A special term of court was convened at Nome Oct 7th, Judge Wickersham presiding.


Nome's first brewery began operations October 1st.


Nome complains of the quantity of mutilated currency in circulation.


The customs report at Nome shows that 7000 people arrived in that camp this season and that 4000 have

already departed.




"Douglas Island News", November 13, 1901 (Douglas City, Alaska)

Edward W May, convicted at Nome on March 22, 1901 of larceny and sentenced to McNeill's Island for 5

 years has been pardoned.


The little steamer Arctic is believed to have been the last to leave Nome this season, being scheduled to sail Nov 9.


Prospectors from Nome and Teller City are going in great numbers to the Candle Creek diggings.


The Nome electric light plant will soon be completed, and during the winter pole lines will be extended to various

creeks and power generated for working the claims.



"The New York Times, New York NY, 21 Jul 1903"

Dispatch from Nome, July 10:

Nearly a block of charred and blackened ruins mark the site of what was the Golden Gate Hotel and adjacent buildings. 

The fire broke out at 5 o'clock on Sunday morning, when nearly all the guests were in their beds.  the second cook,

F R Burr, apparently poured half a baking powder can of coal oil on the fire which was smoldering in the kitchen

stove.  There was an explosion, and Burr flex.  Harvey Edgarton, the night clerk, turned in an alarm and hurried down the

corridor to awaken the guests. 


The hotel was a big three story structure, a regular death trap, with no fire escapes or emergency exits, and it burned like

a tinder box.


R M Hayes, a wealthy contractor of Pittsburg, and his wife were on the third floor.  It is thought that, on reaching the corridor

 and finding it a mass of flames, they returned to their rooms.  They were suffocated.  Their bodies have been recovered, as

has also the body of Sherman D Gregg of Freeport, Penn.


Daggett & Harris, proprietors of the hotel, estimate their loss at $50,000.  Various warehouses in the neighborhood were badly

 damaged, and the losses, with those of the guests, make the total loss nearly $100,000.  The cook, Burr, has been held

for manslaughter, as a result of the Coroner's inquest.



Idaho Statesman, Wens July 22, 1903

Nome Disaster

Robert M Hays, who burned to death in a hotel fire at Nome July 10 was one of the wealthiest and best know pipe line

contractors in this part of the state.  He went to Nome a month ago to lay a water line for a fold mining company.  He

was accompanied by many of the stockholders and their families, and great concern is felt in this city for the other members

of the party.



Abilene Weekly Reflector, July 23, 1903

Alaska's Greatest Fire.  Cape Nome, Alaska July 20.

A great fire has destroyed the famous Golden Gate hotel and several other buildings.  Several people were burned to death.




The Silver Messenger, September 15, 1903. Challis, Idaho


the following letter from W M Wells of Nome Alaska to Charles J Fagan of Challis does not speak in very glowing terms of that part of Alaska.  the letter says in part: "Dear Charley; I thought I would write you a few lines to let you know how things are up in this country.  I don't like it here very well - the climate is so bad.  There is a cold rain most all summer and besides about nine months of winter, and it is hard for a man to get onto any ground that is any good.  The whole country is staked and if you find anything some fellow will come and claim it.  These fellows that stay here all winter, go out with dog sleds and locate the whole country, and it holds good for almost two years, so you see it don't give a stranger much chance to prospect.  There are some very rich claims here, there is one bench claim that goes $20 to the pan, but most of the claims are a little better than wages.  There are lots of idle men here.  I don't know what they will do this fall.  It is the hardest place I ever saw to work for wages in, they expect two days work in one.  I am coming out next month as I would not desire to winter here for a man can't do anything for seven months.  If Loon creek is all right I think I will come in there in the spring.  You remember Levy, he is here and looks 20 years older than he was when he left Custer.  He has not got anything but a big grey horse.  Christ Tremper who used to be in Bayhorse, made about $20,000 last year.  Bert Wilson is here and has got a little good ground but I dont think he has much money.  The Smith boys who lived on the East side of Salmon river are here - the Mormon Smiths.  They are doing pretty well.  Your son, W. M. Wells, Nome Alaska, Aug 13, 1903.




Douglas Island News, Nov 2, 1904 (Douglas City, Alaska)

The Corwin will again be the last boat down from Nome.

The Steamship Victoria arrived in Seattle Oct 25 from Nome Alaska. She carried 516 passenger and $225,000 in treasure.

Anvil Masonic Club has received dispensation from the grand lodge of the State of Washington for the organization of Anvil Masonic Lodge F & A.M in Nome.

Mortimer I Stevens, city assessor of Nome and for more than a year past editor of the Nome News is in jail charged with embezzlement.  It is alledged that his accounts are behind to the extent of $23,722.48 and he admits to a shortage of $1,800.




The Maui News, Dec 31, 1904


In 1890, Dr Shelden Jackson, whose name is inseparably connected with the introduction of reindeer in Alaska, visited that country for the

purpose of establishing schools, a task which had been assigned to him by the Commissioner of Education.  He found the Esquimos more in need of food than schools, starving in fact, because the relentless hunt of the whale and walrus by large steam vessels had largely reduced the number of these sea animals or driven them away.  The fur bearing animals and the carabou or wild reindeer had practically been exterminated by hunters.  In casting about for means to help them, it occurred to Dr Jackson that the introduction of reindeer would meet their wants, because if the deer were sufficiently numerous it would give them a permanent supply of food.  When he first began, his efforts were greeted with scoffing and ridicule, and elaborate arguments were advanced to prove that reindeer could not thrive in Alaska.  But he persevered and finally succeeded in convincing Congress that it was the cheapest and easiest way of preventing the extermination of the Esquimos by starvation.  In the meantime, through the public press, Dr Jackson described the starving condition of the Esquimo people and appealed to charitable persons to assist in the inauguration of the enterprise.  The response was prompt and generous, something over $2,000 being received, and by the aid of a revenue cutter in arctic waters assigned by the Secretary of the Treasury to transport the deer he proceeded to procure the first reindeer from the semisavage tribes in Siberia, the first importation consisting of only 16 head, which were landed in Unalaska in the autumn in 1891 to which were added 171 head in 1892, and an institution for their breeding was established and named in honor of Senator Teller of Colorado who had taken much interest in the enterprise.  In 1893 an additional 127 head were purchased, and 79 fawns were born to the herd already imported.  During the same year, Congress made an initial appropriation of $6,000 for the purpose of introducing and maintaining the Territory of Alaska reindeer for domestic purposes.  At present it is estimated that there are 7,000 reindeer in Alaska and as the increase by birth is 40% per year.  It is estimated that by 1910 there will be upwards of 70,000 reindeer in Alaska



The Starkville News, Sept 29, 1905 (Starkville, Mississippi)


60 buildings were destroyed by fire at Nome, Alaska causing a loss of about $200,000. All the records in the office  of the government townsite trustee except the plat and tract book were destroyed.



Douglas Island News, Oct 18, 1905 (Douglas City, AK)


Nome can't lose its tenderloin district. 

A Masonic Temple is to be built at Nome to cost about $15,000.

A new telephone company has been given a franchise at Nome

A Case of smallpox was discovered at Nome last month and was promptly isolated, and no other cases are reported.



Bisbee Dailey Review, March 28, 1906. Bisbee, AZ

Special Agent comes to take man arrested for Robbery


After Obtaining the description of Bob Kennedy, arrested at Cananea last week by Officer Jack White as an accomplice in the holdup of the Winters saloon up Tombstone Canyon in which Norton and Comesford were implicated, Clyde C Coleman, a special US Agent for the second division of Alaska has come to identify Kennedy as a man wanted in Alaska for a similar charge........That Officer White arrested the right party at Cananea was learned from a picture which Coleman had.  This picture was taken after a disastrous fire in Nome Alaska where he was lined up with other employees of the firm which burned and their pictures taken.......At Nome Kennedy went by the name of Robert McCullough.  In other places he is known as "Little Billie", "Friday" McCullough and George William.  Kennedy, it is charged, in company with Walter Gilmore and Richard Roe, held up two Russians named Nerkury Nikitin and Gregory Konchenko, October 9, 1905, securing about $240.00.  Gilmore was arrested and pleaded guilty and is not serving time in the United State Penitentiary........



Pullman Herald, Sept 23, 1907 (Pullman, WA)

Fire at Nome Alaska


Fire swept the heart of the business section of Nome on the night of Sept 13.  From the meager information it was gathered that from 20 to 25 buildings were burned in the vicinity of Lane's Way, and that the fire area covered two or three blocks.  No details are given, and no loss of life is reported.  If the fire burned in both directions from Lane's Way it is estimated by persons familiar with the class of business in that vicinity that the loss will reach $500,000 and may exceed that figure, although any estimate made at present would be mere guess.



Chicago Eagle, November 2, 1907


Fire Damage at Nome.  Fire at Nome, Alaska, caused a property loss of about $300,000.  The Second Avenue office building of the Pioneer Mining Company, the best structure of the kind in the town, was among those destroyed.



Omaha Daily Bee, January 17, 1909

Trip From Nome on a Sled

Mail carrier makes journey with Dogs for wager of $10,000.


Traveling from Nome, Alaska to New York and back again by means of a sled and dog team to win a wager of $10,000, Eli A Smith, government mail carrier in Alaska arrived in Omaha Saturday morning on his homeward journey and secured from Mayor Dahlman an official document showing the fact to be true, the document being penned by the mayor in his characteristic style. "Eli A Smith of Nome Alaska, arrived at the city hall in Omaha at 10:30 am on this date, January 16, 1909. He looks like a four time winner to me." ....... Eli Smith left Nome Alaska, on Nov 14, 1906 and according to the terms of the wager must be back there by May 15.  He is attempting to win a wager of $10,000 made by the miners and the mail carriers.  In addition to this wager, Mr Smith has made side bets amounting to $12,000 more.  So far he has traveled 15,000 miles and has covered the greater part of the distance.  He will remain in Omaha until Wens when he will proceed on his journey, going via Sioux City, Yankton, Bismark, Great Falls and Spokane to Seattle where he will take ship for Valdez, Alaska and then by dog team to Nome.  The traveler reached Washington DC on Feb 20, 1907 and called at the White House.  He visited the president, who wrote this card to be placed among hundreds of others he has received from mayors and prominent men: The White House, Feb 20, 1907 - Eli Smith of Nome Alaska, with his dog team has just arrived here.  Good luck to him. Theodore Roosevelt.....Woven into the story of the queer journey is a little romance which culminated in the marriage of the traveler with Miss Hybaugh at Washington DC March 2, 1907. President Roosevelt was a witness to the ceremony. Mrs Smith remained in Washington but he says he will soon send for her upon completion of the journey and the receipt of the wager he will return to Seattle and make a home there for himself and bride. 



The Evening Statesman, Feb 23, 1910 (Walla Walla, WA)

Fire at Nome

Nome, Alaska, Feb 23 - The United States customs house here was gutted by fire today. All the records were saved.



Valentine Democrat, March 16, 1911 (Valentine, Nebraska)


Fire at Nome Alaska. Fire recently destroyed the telephone exchange, putting all telephones on the peninsula out of commission.  A temperature of 12 degrees below zero baffled the attempts to extinguish the flames.



Rogue River Courier, Oct 10, 1913 (Grants Pass Oregon)

San Francisco to aid Stricken City of Nome.

Wiring from Santa Barbara, Mayor Rolph today called a conference of the supervisors, public welfare commission and the Red Cross association to organize a relief committee in this city for the suffering victims of storm and fire in Nome Alaska........



"The Day Book", 13 Oct 1913, Chicago, IL:

"Storm Toll was Eleven" Nome, Alaska, Oct 13. -Eleven persons were drowned and three gasoline schooners are known

 to have been wrecked in the hurricane which swept the Alaskan coast last week.  The coast north of here is strewn

 with wreckage of small boats.



NOME, Alaska, Jan. 3, 1930 – (AP) – A dog team driver today brought word to Nome that a plane was heard soaring over

 Pilgrim Springs, 75 miles north of here in a mountainous district, at midnight November 9, the day Pilot Carl Ben Eilison and

mechanic Earl Borland disappeared while flying to the fur trading ship Nanuk, ice bound at North Cape, Siberia.

Arrangements probably will be made in the next four hours to send a plane to scout the area, if weather conditions permit,

those in charge of the Eielson search said.

If the plane heard was Eielson’s it would indicate that he had turned back for Alaska after finding it impossible to land at

North Cape and had been unable to effect a landing because of darkness and fog after reaching the Alaskan mainland.
The Pilgrim Springs district is an isolated section, with only a few inhabitants scattered many miles apart. Heretofore Eielson

 was believed to have come down in the area of North Cape and all rescue operations have been aimed in that direction.
Published in Huntsville, AL Newspaper 1/3/1930, Page 1 Column 2



FAIRBANKS, Alaska, Jan. 6, 1930 (AP) – With the loss of another plane and three men to add to their worries, the searchers for Carl Ben

Eielson and Earl Borland, whose plane disappeared Nov. 9, today were held at a standstill by adverse fortune and fierce arctic storms.
Three powerful cabin planes, rushed here from Seattle and put at the disposal of arctic hardened Canadian pilots, were down one wrecked, one

 apparently lost and the other weather bound at Nualto, halfway point between here and home.

Eielson and Borland disappeared while flying from teller to fur trading ship Nanuk, frozen in the ice near North Cape.  Frank Dorbandt, Eielson’s

flying companion, who a few days ago was withdrawn from the rescue work and ordered to take a rest, took off from Nome yesterday and flew

200 miles inland, hoping to sight Reid’s plane. Late last night from Solomon, 36 miles from here, where he was forced down, Dorbandt reported he

had not sighted the overdue plane.

1/6/1930 FAIRBANKS, Alaska, Jan. 6, 1930 – (INS) – Apprehension is felt here today for the safety of Capt. Reid commander of the Eielson-Dorland relief expedition, and his mechanics William Hughes and James Hutchinson. No word has been received of the missing trio since they hopped off from here Saturday for Nome. The trio was enroute to Nome to join in the search for Eielson and Earl Dorland who have been missing in the Arctic for more than a month. 1/6/1930



NOME, Alaska, Jan. 31, 1920 (AP) – Encouraged at finding an aviator’s helmet and a pair of gloves, searchers digging in the snow and ice 90 miles southeast of North Cape, Siberia, for the bodies of Carl Ben Eielson and Earl Borland went on with their task today.  The helmet and gloves, unearthed from the ice strewn wreckage of the Eielson plane were identified yesterday as those used by Borland. No trace of the bodies was found but the searchers still were convinced that Eielson and Borland died in the wreckage last November 9.  The pane, wrecked while Eielson was attempting a flight to the fur trading ship Nanuk, icebound at North Cape was located Saturday by Pilots Joe Crosson and Harold Gilliam while on an aerial scouting trip from the Nanuk.
Severn men were dispatched to the scene of the wreck from the Nanuk to begin digging away the ice and hard packed snow which all but covered the wreck. Two more men were taken to the scene yesterday from the Russian supply ship Stavropol.   The theory was advanced here by persons familiar with the Siberian wastes that the bodies might never be recovered, as the country is over run by wolves and other carnivorous animals. Published January 31 1930, in Huntsville, AL newspaper, Page 1 Column 6


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