The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21). rn VOLUME XVII. Later National Literature, Part II.

XIV. Travellers and Explorers, 1846–1900

§ 34. Alaska

Besides the outlying possession of the Philippines, the United States became owner by purchase in 1867 of Russian America, afterwards named Alaska. Seward was ridiculed for making such a purchase in the “frozen” north, and it was long derided as Seward’s “Ice-box.” The vast number of publications favourably describing this region belie this term, and it is now well understood that Seward secured a treasure house for a pittance.

Seward’s “Address on Alaska at Sitka, August 12, 1869,” in Old South Leaflets, Vol. 6, No. 133 (1904) is interesting in this connection. There are a great number of reports, and narratives like those of the veteran William H. Dall; Captain W.R. Abercrombie’s Alaska, 1899, Copper River Exploring Expedition (1900); Henry T. Allen’s Report of an Expedition to the Copper, Tanana, and Koyukuk Rivers in the Territory of Alaska in the Year 1885 (1887); M. M. Ballou’s The New Eldorado, a Summer Tour in Alaska (1889); Reports by A. H. Brooks; Miss Scidmore’s Alaska (1885), etc.