November 12, 2014

Map of Alaska, Yukon Territory, and British Columbia, Showing Connections of the White Pass and Yukon Route

Published in 1904, this map shows the routes and interconnecting service of the White Pass and Yukon Railroad between Skagway, Whitehorse, and Dawson City. It includes both train and boat routes, as well as geographical information on the adjacent areas of Alaska, Yukon, and British Columbia. The reverse side of the map contains a timetable as well as vignettes about points of interest throughout the region. The map was made to be folded as a brochure. The map shows the full course of the Yukon River, the longest river in northwestern North America, in both Canada and Alaska. It also records the distance in miles between the maritime port of Skagway and many other localities from San Francisco to remote parts of Alaska and Canada, such as Saint Michael, Caribou, Atlin, and the forbidding Lake Laberge immortalized in the poetry of Robert W. Service (1874−1958). Although the Klondike Gold Rush had ended in 1899, gold was found elsewhere in Alaska, and the White Pass and Yukon Railroad continued to serve the need for a regional transportation system. In the ensuing decades it became a key regional railroad network and eventually an innovator in the containerization of the cargo industry. By the 1950s, the White Pass and Yukon Railroad had pioneered intermodal services, whereby standard containers could be transferred from trains and trucks to ships, and vice versa. This led to a fully integrated network of intermodal transportation that became a model for other companies in the United States, Canada, and across the world.

Collection of Poems by Shāhī

Dīvān-i Shāhī (Collection of poems by Shāhī) is a divan (collection) of verse by Amīr Shāhī Sabzavārī (died 1453; 857 A.H.), a prominent Persian poet of the Timurid era who composed in many of the classical forms of Persian poetry. Amīr Shāhī’s poetry belongs to the tradition of Persian mystical love poetry. The collection includes poems composed in the ghazal (a metrical form expressing the pain of loss and the beauty of love), qaṣīda (lyric poem), and rubā’ī (quatrain) forms. Amīr Shāhī was born in Sabzevar (present-day Iran), but received his education in Herat (present-day Afghanistan), where he joined the court of Timur’s son Shāhrukh (1377–1447) and that of Shāhrukh’s son Baysunqur Mīrzā (1397–1433). Biographers refer to Amīr Shāhī as a superb poet, but also as a painter, musician, and calligrapher. His poetry was greatly admired by his celebrated contemporary ʿAbd al-Raḥmān Jāmī (1414–92), as well as by later authors, such as Alīshīr Nawā’ī (1441–1501). In Tadhkirat al-Shuʿarā (Memorial of poets), Dawlatshāh Samarqandī (died circa 1494) describes the premature death of Baysunqur Mīrzā after a bout of drunken revelry, and singles out the elegy for him composed by Amīr Shāhī as having surpassed those of all his peers in its pathos. It is said that Amīr Shāhī wrote more than 12,000 verses, but his surviving anthology contains less than a tenth of that number. He himself is believed to have destroyed that portion of his verse he considered inferior. Amīr Shāhī died in Gorgan and is buried in Sabzevar in a khānaqāh (Sufi dervish lodge) founded by his ancestors. The present manuscript of Dīvān-i Shāhī is an illuminated, undated copy written in a flowing nastaʿlīq hand. An unusual feature of the work is the manner in which each poem is set off by the Arabic wa lahu ayḍan or ayḍan lahu (furthermore, he wrote).

Map of Alaska and Adjoining Regions: Showing Distribution of Beaver, Land Otter, and Sea Otter

This multi-sheet map was produced by Ivan Petroff (also seen as Petroof and Petrof), a U.S. Census agent, in 1882, 15 years after Russia’s sale of Alaska to the United States. The sheets of this map show the zoogeography of Alaska for various animals, including the typical range for land otter, sea otter, polar bear, brown bear, black bear, red fox, cross fox, black (silver) fox, white and blue Arctic foxes, mink, and marten. The maps use a variety of colors to highlight specific species for easy reference to their habitat and distribution across the region. They also provide ecological information, for example concerning the crisis stemming from the precipitous regional decline of the sea otter. The Russian American Company had severely overhunted this marine mammal for more than a century, owing to the enormous value of its fur, and the relevant map in this set reveals the reduced range of the sea otter in the early American period. Each map assesses related groups of animals and uses unique colors for each species. The maps also include basic geographical information, such as the names of mountain ranges as well as key rivers and bodies of water. The sheets are numbered II−V; sheet I presumably is missing. Petroff was a Russian-born Alaskan who served in various other positions after the sale of Alaska in 1867, including as a translator for the U.S. Army and for the State Department, and as a customs collector. Historians have questioned the quality of some of Petroff’s written work and the accuracy of his census figures.

Map of Alaska and Adjoining Regions: Showing Distribution of Polar, Brown, and Black Bear

This multi-sheet map was produced by Ivan Petroff (also seen as Petroof and Petrof), a U.S. Census agent, in 1882, 15 years after Russia’s sale of Alaska to the United States. The sheets of this map show the zoogeography of Alaska for various animals, including the typical range for land otter, sea otter, polar bear, brown bear, black bear, red fox, cross fox, black (silver) fox, white and blue Arctic foxes, mink, and marten. The maps use a variety of colors to highlight specific species for easy reference to their habitat and distribution across the region. They also provide ecological information, for example concerning the crisis stemming from the precipitous regional decline of the sea otter. The Russian American Company had severely overhunted this marine mammal for more than a century, owing to the enormous value of its fur, and the relevant map in this set reveals the reduced range of the sea otter in the early American period. Each map assesses related groups of animals and uses unique colors for each species. The maps also include basic geographical information, such as the names of mountain ranges as well as key rivers and bodies of water. The sheets are numbered II−V; sheet I presumably is missing. Petroff was a Russian-born Alaskan who served in various other positions after the sale of Alaska in 1867, including as a translator for the U.S. Army and for the State Department, and as a customs collector. Historians have questioned the quality of some of Petroff’s written work and the accuracy of his census figures.

Map of Alaska and Adjoining Regions: Showing Distribution of Foxes

This multi-sheet map was produced by Ivan Petroff (also seen as Petroof and Petrof), a U.S. Census agent, in 1882, 15 years after Russia’s sale of Alaska to the United States. The sheets of this map show the zoogeography of Alaska for various animals, including the typical range for land otter, sea otter, polar bear, brown bear, black bear, red fox, cross fox, black (silver) fox, white and blue Arctic foxes, mink, and marten. The maps use a variety of colors to highlight specific species for easy reference to their habitat and distribution across the region. They also provide ecological information, for example concerning the crisis stemming from the precipitous regional decline of the sea otter. The Russian American Company had severely overhunted this marine mammal for more than a century, owing to the enormous value of its fur, and the relevant map in this set reveals the reduced range of the sea otter in the early American period. Each map assesses related groups of animals and uses unique colors for each species. The maps also include basic geographical information, such as the names of mountain ranges as well as key rivers and bodies of water. The sheets are numbered II−V; sheet I presumably is missing. Petroff was a Russian-born Alaskan who served in various other positions after the sale of Alaska in 1867, including as a translator for the U.S. Army and for the State Department, and as a customs collector. Historians have questioned the quality of some of Petroff’s written work and the accuracy of his census figures.

Map of Alaska and Adjoining Regions: Showing Distribution of Mink and Marten

This multi-sheet map was produced by Ivan Petroff (also seen as Petroof and Petrof), a U.S. Census agent, in 1882, 15 years after Russia’s sale of Alaska to the United States. The sheets of this map show the zoogeography of Alaska for various animals, including the typical range for land otter, sea otter, polar bear, brown bear, black bear, red fox, cross fox, black (silver) fox, white and blue Arctic foxes, mink, and marten. The maps use a variety of colors to highlight specific species for easy reference to their habitat and distribution across the region. They also provide ecological information, for example concerning the crisis stemming from the precipitous regional decline of the sea otter. The Russian American Company had severely overhunted this marine mammal for more than a century, owing to the enormous value of its fur, and the relevant map in this set reveals the reduced range of the sea otter in the early American period. Each map assesses related groups of animals and uses unique colors for each species. The maps also include basic geographical information, such as the names of mountain ranges as well as key rivers and bodies of water. The sheets are numbered II−V; sheet I presumably is missing. Petroff was a Russian-born Alaskan who served in various other positions after the sale of Alaska in 1867, including as a translator for the U.S. Army and for the State Department, and as a customs collector. Historians have questioned the quality of some of Petroff’s written work and the accuracy of his census figures.