Lecture and Book Signing: White Fox and Icy Seas in the Western Arctic
By John Bockstoce
Thursday, October 25, 2018
Reception & Book Signing 6 pm | Lecture 7 pm
Members $10 | Non-Members $15
White Fox and Icy Seas in the Western Arctic
In the early twentieth century, northerners lived and trapped in one of the world’s harshest environments. At a time when government services and social support were minimal or nonexistent, they thrived on the fox fur trade, relying on their energy, training, discipline, and skills. John R. Bockstoce, a leading scholar of the Arctic fur trade who also served as a member of an Eskimo whaling crew, explores the twentieth-century history of the Western Arctic fur trade to the outbreak of World War II, covering an immense region from Chukotka, Russia, to Arctic Alaska and the Western Canadian Arctic. This period brought profound changes to Native peoples of the North. To show its enormous impact, the author draws on interviews with trappers and traders, oral and written archival accounts, research in newspapers and periodicals, and his own field notes from 1969 to the present.
About the Author
Arctic historian and archaeologist, John R. Bockstoce has been traveling and working in the North since 1962. He has carried out a series of excavations at Bering Strait and served for ten seasons as a member of an Eskimo whaling crew at Point Hope, Alaska. In the 1970s he descended the Tanana and Yukon rivers by canoe from Fairbanks to Nome and traveled along the coast from there to Barrow Strait in arctic Canada. Later he twice traversed the Northwest Passage by boat.
He is the author of many books, monographs, and articles, including Arctic Passages: A Unique Small Boat Voyage through the Great Northern Waterway (1991, 1992), Arctic Discoveries: Images from Voyages of Four Decades in the North (2000), High Latitude, North Atlantic: 30,000 Miles through Cold Seas and History (2003), and the award-winning Whales, Ice and Men: The History of Whaling in the Western Arctic (1986, 1995). The University of Alaska recently conferred on him an honorary Doctor of Science in recognition of his contributions to Arctic studies.