AHS Blog

New NPS Publications by Allan and Ringsmuth

Date Posted: December 2, 2013       Categories: 49 History

Two new National Park Service publications by leading Alaska historians (and AHS board members) are worth your time and attention.

Arctic Citadel by Chris Allan offers a history of exploration in the Brooks Range led by outsiders who struggled to fill the blank spaces on their maps and reveal this vast unfamiliar landscape to the world. Arctic Citadel also examines the role of Alaska Native people in early expeditions, finding that indigenous people already possessed an intimate knowledge of their homeland and of how to travel through mountainous terrain that challenges human beings at every turn.
Chapters include:
Early Approaches (examining the motivations behind early excursions to Alaska’s Arctic coast)
Military Exploration (detailing the exploratory efforts of the Army, Navy, and Revenue Marine in the 1880s)
The Search for Gold and Oil (describing the efforts of USGS to map and identify mineral potential in northern Alaska)
Seeking Blank Spaces (examining the travels and wilderness philosophy of Bob Marshall)
Arctic Citadel, Arctic Parks (a look at technology, resource development, and the creation of national parks in the Brooks Range)

The book is intended to serve as an education and interpretation tool for four of Alaska’s Arctic national park units—Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Noatak National Preserve, Kobuk Valley National Park, and Cape Krusenstern National Monument. Copies are available from Greg Dixon, NPS Regional Office, Anchorage, greg_dixon@nps.gov

Next, At the Heart of Katmai by Katherine Ringsmuth is a history of the administration of the Brooks River area that concentrates on the evolving relationship between people and bears in a landscape shaped and inhabited by both for at least 4,500 years.

Chapters include:

The Early Monument and the Brooks River Area
From Isolated Paradise to an Angler’s Paradise
“A Fed Bear is a Dead Bear”

The Scientific Era Begins
Brooks River Fishers: Bears and Anglers
A New Park and Preserve
Pushing the Boundary in Bear Country
Brooks Camp at the Crossroads
Post-DCP Management Challenges at Brooks Camp
A Delicate Balancing Act
Conclusion: People and their Changing Perceptions of Bears

Copies are available from Jeanne Schaaf at <jeanne_schaaf@nps.gov>