6 The Daily Tar Heel Friday. September 16,
Surt photo by Route Wilton
The spike driving contest is a popular
sport for Skagway residents.
CHAPEL HILL BIBLE CHURCH
Sunday Worship Services
9:00 A.M. and 10:30 A.M.
A Teaching fellowship Dedicated To
Making Disciples of Jesus Christ
FEATURING: HAM, SAUSAGE
AND STEAK BISCUITS . . .65P each
Ummm. So Good For Breakfast
Lunch and Dinner, Too!
133 W. Franklin Street
Open 6 AM until 12 PM Phone 929-2425
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CAN JOG ALL THE TIME
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. A) ED BRADLEY HAS
home of hustlers, outlaws and dreamers
By JEFF BRADY
Long distances are deceiving. If I told you
I could drive you 4,570 miles in eight days to
a lively little gold-rush town called Skagway
in Southeast Alaska, you would probably
tell me that 1 was crazy. Many have. But if I
said that awaiting you there would be a job
to your liking and wealth beyond your
wildest dreams, you might become a victim
to the take.
My little con never fails. Last May three of
my friends Rouse Wilson, Bruce Lent
and Karen Rhyne grabbed the lure. I was
returning for my second summer as
bunkhouse manager and taxi driver. I
assured my friends that they would find
similar jobs the day we arrived.
Our route was simple: draw a line across
the continent from Chapel Hill to Skagway
and follow the best roads.
At Prince Rupert in northwest British
Columbia, we picked up the Alaska Marine
H ighway, a system of large ferries that serves
communities along the Inside Passage. The
passage, often compared to the fiords of
Norway for its beauty, is a narrow 400-mile
waterway that cuts through the
mountainous Southeast Alaska panhandle.
Skagway is the northern terminus of the
ferry route, 36 hours from Prince R upert and
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PRESIDENTS P&SCm. SECXE-
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ACCOUNT BY i45O,0O0-.
WAIT A MINUTE,
HER ACCOUNT BY
MR. IMNTHAl CLAIMS HE
HAS ALWAYS MAINTAINED A
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70 miles north of Juneau, the state capital.
Cruising up the Taiya Inlet into Skagway
Bay, the town does not look any different
from the one you see on the post card, it
looks quite peaceful, just the right size for its
But after disembarking, you notice
something peculiar about Skagway. First, a
strong wind hits you in the face (Skagway
means "home of the north wind"). Then, you
are confronted by reminders of the town's
illustrious past. You begin to wonder what it
was like living in a city of 20.000 during the
world's last and greatest gold rush.
Skagway's Broadway is one of the most
unique streets in all the North. Lined on both
sides by boardwalk and false-front
buildings, it presents a problem to tourists
who have never seen a main drag that was
not paved. When the wind picks up in the
afternoon, the dust blows in their eyes and
they decide it's too cold and too far to walk
back to their cruise ship a half mile away.
So they hail a cab. one of six in town, three
of which are drive by college students from
North Carolina. You can pick them up in
front of any of the town's 21 curio shops.
They are always cruising by, peering into the
stores and stopping at the one that's most
crowded. Each has their own approach, their
own way of hustling riders, their own line.
"Welcome to Skagway, city of broken
dreams. Special deals, today only!" says one
cabdriver who sits on' a fire hydrant at
Broadway and Third. The fire hydrants
themselves are unconventional just a pipe
sticking out of the ground covered by a large
yellow box that says "No Parking."
Another driver sits on a bench in front of
the Igloo Bar drinking beer. When two
With Foreward by Bill Dooley,
UNC Head Football Coach
An exciting history of North
Carolina football by Associated
Press writer Ken Rappoport,
covering great moments from the
first touchdown in 1888 to the
268 pages of fascinating
photographs and anecdotes
plus a full appendix of
University Square, West Franklin
(In Front of Granville Towers)
Downtown Chapel Hill
Open 7 days a week
Friday 'til 9 p.m.; Sunday 12-6
IT'5 EXClTlNiS KNOIaJINc
THAT ArW MINUTE
IT WAS A THRILL,
r'JZZZf.r. IT OUT,
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HAVE MADE IT
female crew members from the cruise ship
walk past him and into the bar, he chugs the
rest of his beer and says, "Skagway, where
the men are men, and the women brag about
If you're lucky, you'll get the one sporting
the derby hat, the red vest and the pink
garters around his biceps. His badge says,
"Yukon Chauffeur 621." and you've heard
from locals in the Igloo that he traded a
bottle of genuine Carolina moonshine for it.
But when you ask him where he got it, he
says he's a member of Soapy Smith's gang,
the largest band of con men on the North
American continent, and that you shouldn't
be asking such questions unless you're
willing to answer to Colonel Jefferson
Randolph Smith himself.
However, if you pay that driver five bucks,
he'll take you on a two-hour Skagway
Hysterical Tour, pointing out what went on
in the upstairs rooms of those old buildings.
He'll describe what it was like being a
member of that notorious band of outlaws,
and what consequences he suffered at the
hands of vigilante justice. He might even tell
you where he got the pink garters.
Above the town, the snow-capped peaks
rise 6,000 to 7,000 feet from the ocean to
reflect the last bit of sunlight. One peak
stands out because upon it is an inscription,
the letters "AB" formed by the melting snow.
The mountain was not named for the Arctic
Brotherhood, a fraternal organization of
men and women who went over the passes to
the gold fields, but for the inscription itself.
Nevertheless, for some it was a revelation,
the last source of enlightenment in the "city
of broken dreams."
What draws over 100,000 tourists to
Skagway each year is its rough, illustrious
past. During the Klondike Gold Rush of
1897-98, Skagway and rival Dyea, ten miles
north, were the main stopping points for
thousands of greed-stricken gold seekers on
the way to the Klondike gold fields. The two
cities sprang up at the heads of two trails
which converged 40 miles inland at Lake
Bennett and the headwaters of the Yukon
River. " ;
Each man was required by Canadian law
to have a year's worth of provisions,
amounting to about a ton of gear, so it was
not an easy trip, especially in winter when
temperatures dipped to 50 degrees below
From Bennett, the stampeders floated
their supplies in homemade boats 400 miles
down the river to Dawson City, where the
Klondike River flows into the Yukon. The
Klondike and its six tributaries were rich in
gold. George Washington Carmack, who
discovered gold in August 1896, described it
as lying between two rocks "like cheese in a
But most of the claims had already been
staked before the baots arrived. Those who
made fortunes during the gold rush were
either the first discoverers or the men and
women-who remained in the ports to fleece
the abundant transient population.
Consequently, Skagway and Dyea became
boom towns of 20,000 and 10,000
respectively, both boasting the best route to
ponsored by the Warren County
Cash Prizes Paid for Best Band and Individual Competition
Winners Register Now!
Saturday 12:00 noon until ? Sunday 1:00 p.m. until ?
Advance Tickets $3.50 At The Gate $4.00
Phone 919-257-2160 or 919-257-4687
For Advance Tickets
5 Miles South of Warrenton on
Follow the signs U.S. 401 Follow the signs
, r,K f'J , y ,
V n it J I fell
The main street of Skagway, in Southeast Alaska, looks like it hasn't changed much
since the days of the gold rush. Plank sidewalks and the dirt streets are part of the
style that makes Skagway a popular tourist attraction.
At first Dyea and the ancient Chilkoot
Indian Trail was the most popular route.
Forty-thousand persons crossed it during
the winter of 1897-98 compared to about
10,000 who braved the more treacherous
White Pass Trail which began in Skagway.
Skagway also had a bad reputation with
desperado Jefferson Randolph "Soapy"
Smith running the town. There were 60
saloons, as many bordellos and gambling
halls and no law.
But what kept Skagway alive then, as well
as today, and what transformed Dyea into a
ghost town was the construction of a
railroad to Whitehorse in the Yukon, 100
At midnight on May 28, 1898, the first
tracks were laid down the middle of
Broadway to the surprise and disgust of
many residents. With a crew of 600 laborers
working steady, the route was cut to Bennett
in one year and completed to Whitehorse by
the summer of 1900.
In an effort to attract people toSkagway,
The White Pass and Yukon Route bought
out a tramway system on the Chilkoot Trail
and destroyed it. With the gold rush
subsiding, Dyea quickly folded up and
Track and Field Association
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Staff photo by Roum Wilton
moved its lumber to Skagway.
Rumors that still circulate around town
today also blame the White Pass for "setting
up" Soapy Smith. The town rose up against
Smith on July 8, 1898,aday after one of his
men used force instead of wit on an
Australian miner and robbed him of $2,000
in gold dust. Smith had always preached
nonviolence to his men, but pride and a
violent temper sent him to his grave. The
deputy refused to give the gold back, and
Smith died in a shootout on the wharf.
Skagway is expected to experience its
third boom in the next Gve years. But this
boom will not depend solely on the new road
and the new pipeline. Skagway is now
headquarters for a new national park.
Officially dedicated on June 4 of this year,"
the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical
Park was established "to protect and
perpetuate the historical and natural values
of the gold-rush trails and historic buildings
relating to the Klondike Gold Rush of 1897
98," as stated in the park's master plan.
At present, a lack of federal funds and
stagnant negotiations with private owners of
historical buildings stand in the way of the
park's progress. But according to Higgins,
there should be "a noticeable surface change
along Broadway in three years."
The first exclusive tobacco
shop in North Carolina.
Largest and finest selection
of pipes in the Southeast.
"No bite" house blend
tobaccos guaranteed to satisfy
or money back.
Open until 8 PM this
Friday and Saturday
On Franklin St. next to
The Intimate Bookshop
Featuring U.S.D.A. Choice Rib
Eye 10 and 14 ounce.
Charbroiled just the way you like
it. Included is a trip to our superb
salad bar. Also featuring Bar-B-Que
Beef Ribs and Chopped
Sirloin of Beef with delicious
toppings and sauces.
Down The Hill From
1010 Hamilton Road