Posting vignettes based on great postcards found in my mail box and elsewhere.

Monday, August 24, 2009

More High-Flying Alaskans

This postcard was postmarked August 5, 1975 from Kotzebue, Alaska. It was sent to a R.V. O'Brien in Springfield, Massachusetts. The message is brief: "Greetings from Kotzebue. L &B." I bought this card at Candy Waugaman's recent garage sale for charity in Fairbanks, Alaska. Candy is a collector of ephemera, including postcards from Alaska's past.
This scene, like the one published August 12 on this blog, shows a young girl being flung into the air, presumably to spot game (often walrus), and having great fun while doing it. Unlike the black and white postcard previously published, which was shot in the summer season, this one takes place on a windy late spring day. I deduced this by the condition of the broken ice pack.
What makes this image so striking is not only the high-flying girl but the parkas and the quality of the ruffs. Note the back of the ruff in the lower left hand corner. This person's elaborate ruff exhibits the fact that their family has hunting prowess as well as artistic talent of considerable degree.
There is nothing more comfortable or essential in the Alaskan climate than a good ruff. It can mean the difference between a frost free or frost bit face and even life or death.
The photo was taken by Frank Whaley for Wein Consolidated Airlines and published by Arctic Circle Enterprises of Anchorage, Alaska. It was printed by H.S. Crocker Co., Inc., San Bruno, California.

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