Dawson City, Yukon Friday, October 30, 1998

John Gould and Pierre Berton share old times at the Nugget Hill Mine. Photo by Dan Davidson

Feature Stories

Youthful Offenders Find the Courage to Apologize
Dawson Celebrates the Firefighter's Centennial
Why We Celebrate Remembrance Day
John Cramp Still Missing -- Presumed Drowned
Pierre Berton Meets the Idea Factory
Newspapers Big Part Of Winner's Life
Bookends: Historical Fiction for Teens Examines Family Losses
Water Delivery Tender Causes Much Debate
Net Mail: In Search of the Klondike Big Inch Land Co.
Special Photo Feature: Remembering 1995

Welcome to the online edition of the October 30, 1998 Klondike Sun. The hard copy edition was a mere 16 pages this time, but was crammed with 17 photographs, 20 articles, a page of Klondike Cuisine and a poem. We hope you enjoy what we've assembled for you here.

Youthful Offenders Find the Courage to Apologize

by Dan Davidson & Cheryl Laing

It's not often that Dawson's town council is treated to the sound of someone attending in order to make a apology, but that's what happened on October 19, when two of the four offenders involved in a spree of community vandalism last August appeared in public.

The newly reactivated DCTV video coverage of Dawson's council meetings was rolling as Darren Bullen and Shawn Blais read their statements to members of council.

On August 19, they, along with Andrew Sprokkreeff and Curtis Smoler, were responsible for vandalizing the Front Street Gazebo, the Commissioner's Residence, the Victory Garden, and the Museum. The latter youths have since moved from Dawson.

All four young men (one adult and three young offenders by their ages) opted to take the Community Group Counseling route rather than go to court on charges related to their acts. The session was held a couple of weeks ago with all four young men in attendance, and a number of penalties (including some community hours) were assigned.

One of their penances was to compose the letters which were read to council and have them published in the Klondike Sun. All four letters are to appear in the newspaper, with the names affixed, so that the Community will know that the youth accept responsibility for their actions and are apologizing.

Both the youth and their parents have consented to the name publication and, since they were never charged under the court system, this does not breach the Young Offenders Act in the cases of Blais, Sprokkreeff and Smoler. Bullen is on age.

Darren Bullen forgot his letter the night of the meeting , so he made his apology extemporaneously.

Mayor Glen Everitt accepted the apology on behalf of the Council, and commented that he admired the courage of the youth to come forward in public both in person and in the newspaper. He said he recognized that it was very difficult to take responsibility for actions and to make apologies , and that it showed maturity on the part of the youth.

(Ed Note: All four letters were published in the hardcopy edition of the Sun.)


Dawson Celebrates the Firefighter's Centennial

by Kathryn Bruce

The last centennial party of the year was the Firefighter's Ball. Photo by Kathryn Bruce

The 1998 Dawson Firefighter's Centennial Ball was held at Gerties on October 17. It was a sold out event that was attended by many within the community. Guests were dressed in their finest array.

When you first walk in, you are immersed by the street scenes and the flames leaping between the buildings. A series of firefighter vignettes filled the building - a fireman rushing to put the fire out with a hose draped around the balcony railing, historical clippings attracting readers to remind us of the past, and a recreated "hot" firefighter locker style bathrooms - were enjoyed by all.

A silent round of applause to the original '96 Centennial Ball street design crew: Tom Nicols, Brenda Donnick, Jim Johnson, Al Rudis, Cheryl Laing, Kathryn Bruce, and the many others who worked on creating this set; and congratulations to the Firefighter's Ball decorating crew for utilizing the set and adding their own decor to it.

The banquet was created by Klondike Kates fabulous catering. The service was impeccable, the array of salads, seafood, antipasto platter, and entree was vast and exquisitely arranged. This was first class feasting on a grand scale.

A note of recognition to the coat checkers from Robert Service School. At all times you role modeled an excellence in service to the able bodied and especially the disabled who were in attendance. Dawson has much to be proud of in their youth.

After the dinner, dignitaries complimented the firefighters for their dedication. They should "stand proud" for the work they have done and are doing in Dawson. This respect was a prominent theme in the speeches delivered that night.

After the firefighter's group photos, the enormous band struck up their tempo and the guests danced to beat of tunes from past decades. It was a night to be remembered by all. Hats off to the Firefighter's Ball organization for putting together such a successful event.


Why We Celebrate Remembrance Day

by Jim Reilly

The cenotaph in Victory Gardens. Photo by Dan Davidson

Remembrance Day, November 11, is once more approaching. It is a day for all of us. Depending on your age and if you have had experience in a war, or have not had the experience, your thoughts on the meaning of the day will be different. First, for all of us, it is the day set aside for us to think of the women and amen who, through their unselfish sacrifices, gave their lives in wars gone by, that we who remain can live in peace and freedom. We must also remember that, along with our peace and freedoms, goes responsibility to see that we respect each other and all we have.

One of the things that most towns and cities in our country have done is to set up cenotaphs and gardens as memorials to our fallen comrades. Each day, as we walk by or through the garden, we can remember and quietly say "thank you." Please respect these places and keep them free from harm. Sometimes, as you are walking through these parks or passing a cenotaph, take a minute to read the names. They might be from your family.

Each year we have fewer and fewer people who have served in a war. We that remain remember what it was like and recall those of our comrades who did not return home. The younger people are, the less and less likely they are to understand, unless they read books or talk to the people who were there. You can, however, take time to attend the Remembrance Day service in your community, meet the people, talk to them, and see what it means to them. You can also remember the many people in our town who put their lives in danger to help us. I mean the Police, the Firefighters, the Rangers, or just the ordinary citizens who might see someone in danger and go to their aid. This is a day for all our citizens. May we remember our past and look forward to our future.

May all the people of Dawson City and the Klondike Valley come and join in the Remembrance Day Service on November 11, 1998 at the Robert Service School. It will take place from 10 a.m. until 11:45 a.m. After the service in the school gym, we will take the wreaths to the Cenotaph at Victory Garden on Fifth Avenue (beside the Museum). Following that we will have coffee and goodies at Saint Mary's Roman Catholic Church, which will be open right after the Service in the school.

Come one, come all to the Remembrance Say Service at the School and then to the garden and the church to share our joys and our sorrow.


John Cramp Still Missing -- Presumed Drowned

Based on coverage in the Whitehorse Star

There is still no trace of the whereabouts of John Cramp, aged 44, who was declared missing and presumed drowned after a week long search two weeks ago.

Cramp's swamped canoe was discovered in the Yukon River by the George Black ferry staff on October 12. RCMP and members of the Canadian Rangers, began a search almost immediately.

The RCMP, along with a family member, were unable to find Cramp at his farm along the river.

Police, along with the Klondike chapter of the Canadian Rangers and several concerned community members, launched a ground and aerial search Monday and continued until Tuesday evening.

* * * * *

Dropping temperatures and forming ice hindered the search on Wednesday.

Dawson RCMP Staff Sgt. Dana Gibbons, the search and rescue coordinator, said that day that search crew members were forced to abandon the river Wednesday because the formation of ice made the area far too dangerous.

The focus of the search was switched to the air, Gibbons added, with a continued bush search of the area surrounding his cabin.

"We've done a tremendous amount of flying, walking and questioning, and we're just trying to figure out what happened," said Gibbons.

The search also included inquiries with friends and Parks Canada employers who last saw or spoke to Cramp.

In examining the area, it's difficult to piece together what happened, said Gibbons. It's believed Cramp was in the process of packing up his cabin for the winter, and intended to return to town.

* * * * *

The search for John Cramp of Dawson City concluded on Friday, October 16, the RCMP say. At press time that day, Cramp was listed as missing and presumed drowned.

Tim Bain, the Dawson RCMP detachment commander, told the Star on Friday that a meeting was held the previous evening among search crews and family members to determine the remaining options.

Because of the spreading river ice, the search had been reduced to aerial patrols, said Bain.

Advancing ice hampered search efforts for two days, making conditions too risky for search crews to continue on the ground or on the river.

Low-lying fog was also a problem, making it impossible for planes to take off.

"If we can't get the plane up today, that will probably be the end of our efforts," Bain said on the morning of October 16.

* * * * *

Cramp had been extremely interested in both municipal and territorial politics, running for office at both levels.

As an independent candidate in the 1996 territorial election, Cramp took 21 votes, compared to victor Peter Jenkins' 602. Running for mayor in 1994, Cramp drew 17 votes, compared to winner Art Webster's 276.

Cramp attended nearly every town council meeting until recently, said Mayor Glen Everitt. At one point he was so dependable, he had a better attendance record than most of the council members.

Cramp was not only been a spectator, but a player. "He was not a person to sit back if change was happening, if it was something he was not happy with," said Everitt.

"He brought to council valuable opinions we would have not normally heard, and brought a lot of issues to the city we may have overlooked," said Everitt.

Cramp was also a walking encyclopedia when it came to legislative policy.

If there was ever any confusion concerning a particular bylaw, council has often turned to Cramp for clarification. In his off hours he could often be found in the Dawson Public Library, researching issues either through documents or on the InterNet.

Said Everitt: "There is not a single city bylaw he didn't know."

Editor's Note: John Cramp disappeared just after the last issue of the Sun went to press. The coverage here is a combination of R.C.M.P. press releases and the articles published in the Whitehorse Star between October 13 and 16. Most of these were written by Star reporter Sean McNeely.


Pierre Berton Meets the Idea Factory

by Dan Davidson

The crew from the Idea Factory set up a shot. Photo by Dan Davidson
It's a beautiful autumn day up at the Nugget Hill Mine. The sun is warm, the sky is clear, and the breeze is shifting around just enough to keep off the desperate black flies that would like to fulfill their purpose in life before the first big frost finishes them off.

Pierre Berton and John Gould are sitting on the tailgate of the latter's pickup truck, chatting about being boys together, roaming though old buildings in Dawson and going to Wolf Cubs in the late 1920's and early 30's.

Off in the distance Peter Gould's cat is digging away at the side of a hill, getting ore into the sluice. Grand-daughter Gemma, who went through some of this media stuff last year when "On the Road Again" visited the Gould family, is keeping the dogs company.

The crew from Edmonton's Idea Factory are hard at work here, collecting some of the 25 to 30 hours of video taped interviews and location shots that they will need to present the Life and Times of Pierre Berton. Producer Lindsay Speer is holding up a large circular reflector to cut the shadows on Gould and Berton for director of photography Ian Matheson. Director and interviewer Martin Wood is sitting on an inverted plastic bucket, drawing the two chums into the late 1930's tale of Pierre and the stolen truck.

At this point they've already been to Kleinberg, where the Bertons have lived since the 1950's, and have interviewed many of the media people who are Berton's contemporaries and colleagues. But you can't do a show about Pierre Berton without digging up his Klondike roots.

That's why they're here, why they struggled with changing a flat tire out on the Klondike back roads earlier in the day and finally, took the chance of driving that inadequate city spare on their Norcan rental van up the rugged access road to the Gould mine.

The people who run the Idea Factory first decided they'd like to do a documentary about Pierre Berton after their last project for CBC's "Life and Times" program, which was the show about cartoonist Ben Wicks.

"We had Pierre do the voice over for that one," said Lindsey Speer, "because Pierre and Ben are old friends. It was at that time that we decided we should pitch the idea of doing the life and times of Pierre to CBC."

It wasn't a unique inspiration. "Life and Times"usually receives multiple submissions on the same subjects, and it's a question of the producers picking the concept that they like the most.

The Idea Factory's initial submission went under the working title "Canada's Arrogant Icon", playing off the sometimes crusty persona that Berton has displayed to the public over the years, particularly during his tenure on "Front Page Challenge".

Berton's people, particularly Elsa Franklin, the keeper of the Berton image, were not at all happy with that concept when it was first discussed with them, but Berton himself saw the point immediately.

According to Lindsey, Berton burst out, "I love it!"

In fact, the only problem with it is that Idea Factory team aren't quite happy with it by the time they get to Dawson.

"I'm not sure if we're going to stay with that or not," Lindsey admits.

Travelling with the man himself and gathering all the material from people who know him well have raised some doubts in the minds of the producer and the director of the show.

By the time they had arrived in Dawson City it had pretty much morphed into "Pierre Berton: Canada's Arrogant Icon?"

The question mark will leave people room to decide for themselves.

"After travelling with him and talking to people who have known him for years...well, his close friends really say that he's shy. They think 'arrogant' does not describe him at all.

"There's this dichotomy about Pierre. There's this persona that he carried on t.v. for so many years. A lot of people thought he was very opinionated.

"The reality is that he's very well read - he's very intelligent on a number of different subjects. Yes, he does form an opinion, but he usually has the facts to back it up. I think that's the reason why he comes across the way he does to a lot of people who haven't got to know him - haven't spent time with him."

Besides that, even at 78 years of age and leaning on a cane, the man has an imposing physical presence. He's tall and intense. Some people are intimidated by that and translate it as something that he does on purpose.

Lindsey says the program, which should air before the end of 1998, is becoming an attempt to reconcile the two Pierre Bertons.

"A dear friend of his said that he doesn't suffer fools gladly. Another said that he doesn't really do small talk well.

"His wife, Janet, explains this by saying that he's usually writing a column or a book in his head while you're standing there talking to him.

"Talking to him on this trip is like that. If you've asked a specific question then he's usually got the answer, but once that's done there's nothing more to be said."

One of the attractions of doing this shoot for Berton was the chance to come to Dawson once again. While he jokes about managing to arrange most of his trips to the Yukon so that someone else has to pay for them, it's quite likely that he actually sees them as a bit of a personal indulgence, and his work ethic holds him back from doing the trip unless it has a purpose. He has an intense writing schedule laid out for himself and he's feeling the pressure of time.

Whether posing in front of his boyhood home on Harper Street or chatting with his school chum John Gould at the Nugget Hill Mine, Berton is clearly happy to be chasing down his oldest memories.

He and "the boys", as he continually referred to the three man crew, spent Saturday morning out on the Hunker Creek-Bonanza Creek loop, seeing if they could track down some of the places where he had worked while putting himself through college.

Twenty years ago, Berton says, you could still see those places, but the activity since the gold boom of the late 1970's has wiped them all away.

"It's really quite a treat, if you're going to come to Dawson City, to be travelling with Pierre," Lindsey says. "I don't know what better tour guide you could have."

It takes some time to put together an hour's worth of television. The Idea Factory developed their treatment last February. The shoot itself will take about 16 days from start to finish and then the team will need two months to edit and assemble the final product. Their delivery date is the first week in December for a show they expect will air that month or early in January.

Speer and company will have 25 to 30 hours of video tape in the can when they finish.

"On something like this you don't know what you're going to end up with," Speer explains. "You often end up going off on tangents due to the answers that you get in your interviews.


Newspapers Big Part Of Winner's Life

Newspapers have been a big part of Greg Karais' life.

As a child, he simultaneously had three paper routes, frequently winning awards for selling the most subscriptions. Now, he's producing newspapers and periodicals as the self-taught publisher of Dawson City's Harper Street Publishing.

And Karais, 27, is still winning awards - he is the 1998 recipient of the Business Development Bank of Canada's Young Entrepreneur Award for the Yukon.

His publishing business has come a long way from the days in 1994, when Karais created a Dawson City-based tourism paper called Guide to the Goldfields. He worked with a laptop computer that he ran by a car battery because he lived without electricity and running water.

"We meet as many obstacles as we do opportunities and we enjoy overcoming them on a regular basis," said Karais, who initially financed the business with money he earned while working as a waiter.

"A small market in the North has allowed us the opportunity to establish a business where we have gained an education that is second to none."

From its humble origin, Guide to the Goldfields has been turned into a freely-distributed publication with a circulation of 100,000.

In 1997, he added Chris Beacom as a partner and formed Harper Street Publishing, a company with an annual circulation of 150,000, including the Dawson City Insider, the area's first weekly newspaper in almost 40 years.

Sales in Harper Street Publishing, which besides the newspaper division offers a wide range of services, from desktop publishing to Internet design and photocopying, have increased by 22 per cent since 1996.

In a field where competition is fierce and made even tougher by a small market, Karais said he and his partner have combined youthful exuberance, sound money management and practicality to maintain the steady progress of their business, which now has three full-time employees. Karais plans to launch newspapers in the style of the tourism-oriented Guide to the Goldfields throughout Canada and the U.S.

"We've managed to carve a small piece of the Alaskan market, and this year we will be introducing ourselves to even more Alaskan communities."

In winning a BDC Young Entrepreneur Award, Karais joins 11 other business people aged 29 or younger. He received his award Tuesday in Winnipeg.

The BDC, owned by the federal government, delivers financial and management services to small business, with a particular focus on the emerging and export sectors of the economy.

Editor's Note: To give credit where credit is due, we have borrowed this story from the Whitehorse Star. We don't know who wrote it, but the absence of a byline often means that it was largely based on a press release.

To claim credit where it is due, the story fails to mention that the first Guide to the Goldfields was produced in this office, with Sun staffer Brent Morrison training Greg in the use of the equipment and lending his skills to help get the project off the ground. In return, Greg assisted in producing the Sun. While Greg was slowly building up his assets, and until he acquired Centennial Promotions and transformed it into Harper Street Publishing, a lot of the physical work on the Goldfields continued to be done here. The last issue we assisted on was published in 1997.

No hard feelings, but the Sun is committed to keeping the historical record straight where we can.


Bookends: Historical Fiction for Teens Examines Family Losses

by Dan Davidson

White Jade Tiger
by Julie Lawson
Beach Holme Publishing Ltd.
190 pages

There can be few more soul wrenching experiences than the loss of a loved family member. The toll it takes on everyone must be experienced to be believed. There is no easy way to deal with the situation. Death from a lingering illness gnaws at the emotions layer by layer. In the midst of your grief you wonder if there was no more you could have done. Sudden death by accident reaches the same level of pain all at once. You regret the words you never had the time to say.

For Jasmine the death of her mother falls into the second category. The image of the family that we get in the early chapters of White Jade Tiger is one of an ideal unit, a perfectly balanced three legged stool. Jasmine's mother's death on a slippery highway rips one leg from that stool, and it is never to be the same.

Dad tries. He takes a leave of absence from work to work on a book and spend time with his daughter. What he doesn't realize is that he needs to work, needs to keep busy to help himself deal with his own pain. After months of suffering he takes a temporary appointment when a job appears. It means moving to China for half a year and leaving Jasmine with her Aunt Val in Victoria until he can arrange for her to join him.

Thirteen year old Jasmine is not impressed. The only good thing about it is that she doesn't have to switch schools and lose that connection along with everything else, even though she has cut herself off from a lot of her former activities and chums. Her obsession has been in making a memory quilt, something to help her sort through the memories of the years with her mother.

It is during a class outing to Victoria's Chinatown district that Jasmine, dressed for the occasion like a coolie, stumbles through the back door of the Never Ending store and finds herself in 1881, about to begin an excursion into her roots and the roots of her province.

This is a type of book known in the trade as a "time slip fantasy", and the other half of the story has been happening is small snippets as we learned more about Jasmine. It involves the legend of Bright Jade, which comes to Jasmine in a dream, and the much later life of Chan Tai Keung, a young boy who departs from the cursed Celestial Kingdom (China) is search of his father, his fortune and the White Jade Tiger of the that legend, the talisman which will bring hope to the land and its people once again.

Jasmine's slip into the past brings her into contact with Keung, as we might have expected, and joins her to his search for his father and the Tiger. It is a search which will gain them the enmity of one Blue-Scar Wong, will lead them to the mainland and make them part of the horde of Chinese workers which helped to build the Canadian Pacific Railway. It will be a journey of discovery, of danger and of great personal hardship.

Jasmine's ordeal doesn't come to her all at once. She dips into the past several times for short periods of an hour or so, each time coming back to the 1990's unconscious and perhaps only minutes after she left. Even her long stay, when she is in 1882 for months, involves no time loss in her normal life.

Cheung, she finds, has many of the same problems she faces. His other has died. His father has sought his fortune in a foreign land. Added to that is the weight of racial prejudice he has to bear in British Columbia and the cruelties of some of his own countrymen.

While racial tension is an underlying theme of his young adult novel, I appreciate the fact that Lawson has laid it on lightly and not ignored the evils of others. People like Keung were treated just as badly in their home countries, by people who substituted class prejudice for the race consciousness of North America.

Jasmine has some real surprises come to her during the course of this tale, revelations which are enough to help her deal with her other's death in a more positive way. In the end, when her father calls her to join him in China, she is ready for the trip and has reasons of her own for wanting to go there.

As for Keung, I suppose we could say that nothing of Jasmine's story could have been the way it was without his contributions. You'll have to read the book to find out what I mean by that. I think you'll find it worthwhile.

Julie Lawson is the current Berton House Writer here in Dawson City, where she is at work on a new novel.


Water Delivery Tender Causes Much Debate

by Dan Davidson

Town council took some time to find its way to a decision over the future of the water delivery contract last week. The job, which involves the delivery of potable water to those homes in the community which are not hooked up to the utility system, has been handled most recently by Chris Mayes of Mayes Enterprises, and when it became clear that the other bidder had turned in a proposal which was considerably cheaper, many residents began to express concerns over the contract changing hands.

The second bidder was Lone Star Contracting, owned by Mark Favron, whose bid on the tender was $52,260, a cool $20,800 below that of the incumbent Mayes.

Emotions ran high at the October 19th council meeting, with Dome residents Wayne and Candice Braga there to represent the views of a number of residents in the sub-division who had signed a letter to council in support of the Mayes bid.

Chief among their arguments was the fact that, with the contract in Chris Mayes' hands the Dome sub-division had a source of water on hand for emergencies at all times. The presence of Mayes and his water tanker was a key factor in preventing a serious house fire on the Dome during the last year and many residents felt this was important, even though the water delivery contract has nothing to do with fighting fires. It just happens that Mayes is a captain with the Dawson City Firefighters.

In addition, residents felt that Mayes had delivered solid service and had often gone beyond the strict letter of his contract in order to meet the needs of his customers.

The discussion on council was protracted, with Shirley Pennell indicating right off the top that she was still sitting on the fence as far as making a decision was concerned at that meeting.

"I have not made up my mind yet," she stated flatly.

Eleanor Van Bibber came down on the Mayes' side in the debate, citing instant delivery, safety concerns and the wishes of local residents as her key points.

Joanne Van Nostrand felt that local fire service had nothing to do with the tender at hand. It was important, but needed to be addressed in some other fashion. For her the sticking point was the low tender clause in the city's contracting policy, which she felt could only be ignored if the city had some reason to believe that the low bidder would be unable to fulfill the terms of the tender.

Mayor Glen Everitt felt much the same. He said he had had many telephone calls and a few letters on the subject and had spent much of the day researching the matter. He was uncomfortable with the terms of works superintendent Norm Carlson's recommendation to council, which was that Lone Star be offered the tender.

Everitt imposed some conditions on the award. he was not prepared to wait 4 months for the bidder to obtain the necessary 2,000 gallon tanker. Filling the need with a truck half that size was not an acceptable option, in his opinion. He was willing to grant a month. Aside from that, however, he was prepared to vote for the Lone Star bid.

With just four members on council that night (Aedes Scheer being in Seattle on business) that meant a deadlock. It had been hoped that Scheer would be back later in the week for a re-vote, but that turned out not to be the case.

Council reconvened on the issue at 7:30 Thursday morning and once again debated the issue in front of the DCTV camera. This time Pennell changed her vote and Lone Star won the bid.

Pennell said later that the over-riding issue was cost. Water delivery to the Dome, in particular, is already subsidized at about 70% of cost and council had already determined that cuts were needed. The town administration had looked into the costs of simply taking over the service itself, as it used to do, but the Lone Star bid came in even lower than that projected cost, so it wasn't really necessary.

Late last spring council took quite a bit of heat when it changed contractors for its janitorial services, especially when it turned out that the difference between the two bids was only about $75 over the entire year. It would appear that council feels that the gap between the two water delivery bids is substantial enough to keep too many people from complaining once the deal is actually concluded.

Certainly, three of the available four members could not support the extra expense on this particular issue.


Net Mail: In Search of the Klondike Big Inch Land Co.

Dear Editor:

I am freelancing a feature article for the Ottawa Citizen on the Klondike Big Inch Land Co., which was formed by Quaker Oats of Chicago in 1954.

I was one of millions of kids in North America who faithfully watched Sgt. Preston of the Yukon on television every Thursday night. And when Quaker Oats started giving away deeds to a square inch of land in the Yukon, I became a faithful consumer of Quaker Puffed Wheat and Puffed Rice. Currently, I am researching this giveaway, one of the most successful cereal promotions ever, and its aftermath.

I have the basic facts behind the Big Inch Land Co.--that it was the idea of a Chicago ad man named Bruce Baker; that Baker was assisted by a local lawyer, the late George Van Roggen; that the land eventually reverted to the government for non-payment of $37.20 in taxes; that even after more than 40 years queries continue to arrive in Chicago, Ottawa, Whitehorse, Alaska, etc. from people wondering whatever happened to their land--but any additional information you can provide me would be greatly appreciated.

Is it something anyone in your area has looked into?

Has the Sun or any place else you know received any queries about the Big Inch Land Co.? Do you have any related clippings or photographs in your files? (Mae West apparently once posed with a deed to a square inch of Yukon land and a genuine poke of Yukon dirt.)

What was the reaction of people in Dawson City when an American cereal company started giving away tiny chunks of their neighbourhood in 1955? Would anyone remember the visit of Bruce Baker in 1954?

Whatever became of the 19.11-acre parcel of land Quaker Oats bought for the promotion (identified as Lot 243, Group 2, 12 miles north of Dawson City on the river)? What is the land like in that location? Would it be occupied today? By whom? How much would 19 acres like that be worth today?

Would anyone know whatever happened to RCMP Const. Paul LeCocq of the Dawson City detachment? LeCocq received the fan mail addressed to Sgt. Preston of the Yukon, and it was he who, on Oct. 7, 1954, took Bruce Baker by boat to see the land he had just bought for Quaker Oats.

Absolutely anything you could fill me in on would be of great help. You can reach me by return or e-mail or by phone, collect at 613-238-3726.

Many thanks,

David McDonald


Special Photo Feature: Remembering 1995

The Klondike Centennial Society presents the following photo set, the first of a series showcasing the accomplishments of the centennial celebration years.

For information on any of these or other events, contact the KCS at 993-1996.

Cnst. Kory Hoehn was the first rider in the Red Serge Program, a popular addition both to Dawson's summer streets and to the RCMP's community presence.

The Ridge Road Trail opened to hikers in the summer of 1995.

In cooperation with the RCMP, the KCS reenacted the famous Dawson to Fort McPherson Patrol, using both dogs and snow machines.

During the same summer the world-renowned Musical Ride was staged on Hospital Hill.


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