IT was in 1897 that news came "outside" of the wonderful discoveries of placer gold on the upper Yukon and that the excitement began which spread all over the world and drew scores of thousands of people to the sub-arctic wilderness. The Klondike discoveries do not directly concern us for they were in Canadian territory, but they exerted an immense influence upon Alaska, not only upon the country contiguous to the border but upon the whole territory. They turned the attention of mankind to the northwestern corner of the continent and changed the estimation in which that region was held. They opened up the country almost at a blow, as it would have taken many years to open it up in the slow progress of ordinary development. They turned loose upon it thousands of men, and amongst them hundreds of skilled, experienced prospectors, who scattered throughout its immense area and in the course of their search for placer gold found copper and coal, cinnabar and tin and gold-bearing quartz. Many companies of men bound for the Klondike never reached it; detained by news of fresh prospects and discoveries along the route, they turned aside to try their fortune rather than add to the congestion at one spot of which they were constantly hearing. Thus the camp and town of Nome sprang up on Bering Sea, of Rampart on the middle Yukon; thus the Copper River diggings and the town of Valdez on Prince William's Sound. Even away up to the headwaters of the Koyukuk, that great northeastern tributary of the Yukon, such companies penetrated, building the towns of Betties and Coldfoot; even up that arctic river the Kobuk, emptying into Kotzebue Sound, and made the settlement of Shungnak.
Much of the great tide of immigration--most of it indeed--ebbed again. Thousands of men returned to the United States poorer in everything but experience, to resume a steady round of toil from which the adventure of the northern gold fields had lured them. But some remained, adapted themselves to the country and carried their investigations of its mineral resources far and wide.
Our scene changes to the headwaters of Yukon navigation and the difficulties of access thereto from the sea.
While the goal of the great pilgrimage was in Canadian territory, it must pass through territory of the United States, and at the usual point of transfer from sea travel to the toilsome mountain crossing, a point also near the border, there sprang up two towns on the Lynn Canal, Dyea and Skagway, one at the foot of the Chilkoot Pass and one at the foot of the White Pass, the alternative routes, the latter swallowing the former when the railroad was built, only to be itself in great part swallowed when that railroad rendered obsolete all the elaborate packing outfits and necessary stopovers. The railroad completely killed Dyea and "made" Skagway--and presently turned round and destroyed most of Skagway too. But this was not until 1899-1900.
When the Bishop visited the Yukon the second time by way of St. Michael in June, 1897, neither Dyea nor Skagway had been heard of: when he returned to southeastern Alaska in October of that year, each town had thousands of inhabitants. It is not surprising that with the congestion of population and the total lack of all sewerage, or indeed of any hygienic measures whatever, there should have been much sickness. So the Bishop withdrew Dr. Campbell from Douglas Island and Mr. Beer from Juneau and sent them to Skagway. Shortly thereafter a hospital was built, and shortly after it was built there broke out an epidemic of spinal meningitis which taxed all resources to the utmost and from which there were more than an hundred deaths. The Bishop was asked by the trustees of the hospital to take over the institution and he did so, and forthwith enlarged it, making an appeal to the Church for help in this emergency which was quickly and generously responded to, Bishop Barker of Olympia acting as commissary for the Bishop of Alaska, providing funds and procuring material. In 1899 Dr. Campbell dropped dead on the street in Skagway.
The wild rush to the Klondike reached its height of numbers and recklessness in the spring of 1898, when Bishop Rowe crossed the Chilkoot Pass a second time on his way to the Yukon, accompanied by Mr. A. A. Selden, going in to be assistant to Mr. Prevost and to put up the new buildings at Tanana. His route was the same but conditions were very different. It is moderately estimated that not less than ten thousand men, each with his outfit of supplies, were upon the trail at one time. For miles up the hillside, wherever it was not too steep, the trail was lined on both sides with tents, containing gambling games and tables of hucksters of all sorts, while all along the trail itself one was constantly stepping over dead horses and mules and dogs and a litter of abandoned stuff thrown away when it grew too heavy. At one point of the ascent, known as "The Scales", an avalanche had buried seventy men a few days before. Upon reaching the summit the Bishop says, "a wonderful sight presented itself to our eyes." Upon a little sheltered plateau just beneath the summit were over a thousand men, moving to and fro amidst immense piled-up heaps of stores, loading their sleds, and at the edge of the plateau was a long line of men, each at the head of a loaded sled, holding its "gee-pole", waiting his turn to make the descent into the valley. Every moment one of them launched upon the steep slope, guiding his sled by the "gee-pole" as best he could, often carried off his feet by its momentum so that the bottom was reached in a tangled mass of man and sled and outfit. At each of the accustomed stopping places along the route was a similar gathering, a similar congestion. At the head of Lake Bennett, the beginning of navigation until the railroad was built, a considerable town had arisen, the ruins of which the traveller sees today. Amidst all these successive throngs the Bishop moved, making acquaintance with the men, working by their side, talking around camp-fires, holding service whenever opportunity presented.
At the foot of Lake Tagish trees were felled and whipsawed and the boat was built. Boats indeed were for sale here--at $250 apiece; lumber also was for sale--at twenty-five cents a foot; but the Bishop says his boat cost only time and labour. Again the Miles Canon and the White Horse Rapids were run in safety, though the banks below were strewn with wrecked boats, ruined outfits, and, too often, drowned and battered bodies of men. One such body the Bishop recovered from the water and gave Christian burial to.
Upon the journey down the Yukon the Bishop and his companion came within an ace of the same fate. The river was in high flood and continually rising, the boat was heavily laden and his companion was not his match in water-craft. Within forty-five miles of Daw-son the boat was caught in some furious "boilers," caused by cross currents, and, in spite of the greatest exertion, was carried under some "sweepers"--trees undermined by the current and leaning over within a foot or two of the water. He saw the danger, realized that it meant death, told his companion so and prepared for the dread moment, but in some extraordinary manner the boat passed under the sweepers and emerged 'in safety. There is scarcely a year now when some men are not drowned in just this way. In swift parts of the river, at high water, the banks are lined by such prostrate or nearly prostrate trees, renewed continually as they are detached and carried off. Says the Bishop, "God in His merciful providence brought us safely through this peril because He had some further purpose for our lives."
On the 4th June he found the new town of Dawson, the metropolis of the Klondike, under a couple of feet of water. Indeed the disastrous floods that accompanied the "break-up" of '98 are remembered to this day all along the Yukon and its tributaries. Thousands of tents were huddled together wherever level ground allowed, amidst log houses of every size and in every stage of construction; the fevered haste of building and buying, of dancing and drink ing and gambling, went on without cessation under the perpetual daylight of the sub-arctic summer, in the mud and the flood; and a ceaseless stream of men with shovels and packs on their backs passed out to the diggings twenty-five miles away across the reeking tundra. It is thought that there were twenty thousand people in Dawson and its neighbourhood that summer. Never before in history was such invasion of such country, nor is it likely that there will ever be again.
A five days' rest was taken here, and the boat was launched again. "Almost afraid to trust myself to the Yukon again in its then flooded condition, yet hearing that Bishop Bompas was dangerously ill with scurvy, I started for Fortymile and reached it that night." The young Bishop in health ministered to the old Bishop sick for five days, and left him much improved. There is a tenderness and a respect, almost a veneration, in all the references of the one to the other that becomes the recruit to the veteran. Indeed in all these reports there is a personal humility, an absence of self-assertion, that is very attractive and pleasing. Never was a Bishop with less parade of authority, less occupied with the dignity and deference due to his office. The office itself is sunk in the anxious exercise of the office.
Two years had brought changes not only to the Canadian but to the American Yukon. Just across the boundary line which Ogilvie had surveyed a decade before, a new settlement had arisen named Eagle. On American creek in the neighbourhood a few rich claims had been found, and a townsite had been laid out on the river, one of the most attractively situated in the whole country. In 1900 a two-company army post was placed here, and the town grew and flourished, though the mining never amounted to much, and for awhile was the important American town of the Yukon, the seat of the superior law court. The Bishop on his visit staked out lots and later built a church for the whites, and, three miles away, another at the native village, and sent first a clergyman--the Rev. A. R. Hoare--and then a lay-worker. But in 1904 the court was removed to Fairbanks, and in 1910 the army post was abandoned, and the town dwindled in the familiar way to a handfull of each race. Our missionary, the Rev. G. E. Burgess, who has given eleven years of faithful service, has just been succeeded by a layman.
Circle City the Bishop found somewhat recovered from its Klondike evacuation, three hundred men having returned. Mr. and Mrs. Prevost had been transferred here temporarily, and Miss Deane (Sister Elizabeth) had been caring for the sick at the hospital. A physician, Dr. James C. Watt, was under appointment for the place, the reviving fortunes of which seemed to justify a complete staffing.
At Fort Yukon was the Rev. Mr. Hawksley, come hither again from the Rampart House on the Porcupine River, lent by Bishop Bompas, since most of the Rampart House Indians had descended to the Yukon attracted by the trade and the higher price for furs which accompanied the white man's influx. And indeed it was well that there was a clergyman in residence, for during the previous winter several hundreds of white men had wintered here, from steamboats unable to reach Dawson. The influence of that winter was potent and persistent of evil to the Indians.
Between Fort Yukon and the mouth of the Tanana the Bishop found another new white man's town sprung up, with gold-bearing creeks behind it and the usual native village adjacent, called Rampart City (from its situation within the lower ramparts of the Yukon). There were a couple of thousand men in the place at the time of this visit, although only six or seven rich claims had so far been found. The feverish life of a new gold camp, with its great expectations and its sensual indulgence, was in full swing. Lots were staked for a mission site and Mr. Prevost once more transferred. Later, a layman, Mr. E. J. Knapp, gave four years' energetic and devoted service at his own cost at this place; a hospital building and a church were erected--and they stand there yet, conspicuously on the hillside, the site patented to the Church by the Land Office, the church formally consecrated. But the people are gone, save a handfull of whites and a sprinkling of native wives and half-breed children; another of our problem places, visited occasionally by the missionary at Tanana and by the archdeacon on his rounds.
Already the Bishop begins to see the great drawback to all ministrations to the white communities of the Yukon country. He writes of this place, "With regard to its future I cannot speak; it may suffer the fate of similar camps, here today and gone tomorrow. It is this feature that makes the work so trying and discouraging. It is a mission to a movement, to a procession." Yet if missionary work is to be done in the district at all, how shall great gatherings of white people, with the fringe of natives that such settlements draw, be neglected? These towns are always founded with the utmost confidence in the richness and durability of the adjacent gold deposits, and it is possible for a missionary to be infected by this prevailing confidence even against his own judgment. Indeed it is hardly possible to resist it without dropping out of sympathy with the people and the place. Every new "strike" may be the beginning of a new Klondike; only prolonged digging will reveal what lies under the beds of the streams; all that is known for certain is that gold is there! And tradesmen who are boldly risking their capital, miners their labour and money, are apt to be impatient of caution and of doubt. Missionary work in such communities is always expensive; a certain recklessness characterizes the general expenditure, a certain disdain of economies. Wages and merchandise alike are high, freight rates, at first, excessive. The "boom" time of a new camp is a time of inflation, and the missionary work if it be established at all must be established under such conditions.
In the next year (1899) two more important missions were established at two widely separated points--Nome and Valdez, both by the same energetic and willing pioneer, Mr. Prevost. A letter from the Bishop, and he was gone a thousand miles to open up new territory, to drive fresh stakes. Few men have more promptly left home and wife and family, more cheerfully undergone hardship and fatigue, more zealously laboured at the difficult task of the original planting of the Church. He was a most valuable instrument to the Bishop's hand.
The "rush" to Nome takes rank second only to the rush to the Klondike in the history of the North. The discovery of gold in the sands of the beach itself where anyone might sit down and rock it out, made a sensation throughout the United States. This time the diggings were in United States territory and there was no very arduous journey necessary to reach them. When navigation is open Nome is a fairly accessible place, ships making the voyage from Seattle direct in from eight to ten days, and freight rates are correspondingly reasonable. But during the eight months of the year when navigation is closed Nome is more inaccessible than any point in the interior of Alaska, since the whole interior of Alaska must be traversed to reach it. The rush from the "outside", therefore, did but feed upon reports and gather momentum during the winter of 1899-90, to launch itself upon the Pacific in the summer. But from all the older camps in the interior the rush took place during the winter and spring. Never before or since was such a trail down the Yukon. From Dawson to Kaltag (at which point a portage of ninety miles is made direct to Norton Sound, whereby the long detour of the lower river is avoided) road-houses sprang up all along the banks at intervals of twenty or twenty-five miles, so that there was a stopping place every night. The country was scoured for draught animals; horses, mules and dogs were pressed into service. Dogs rose in value so greatly that two or three hundred dollars was sometimes paid for one, and the interior was almost stripped of them. Late in the spring men even made the whole journey on bicycles, so hard-beaten was the snow. From Dawson, from Fortymile, from Circle, from Rampart, the stampede drew thousands of men. all eager to be on the spot before the new multitudes from the States could arrive.
Into this stampede Mr. Prevost was precipitated by the letter from the Bishop, stirred by the excitement outside. He had no money and the Bishop had little or none to send, or indeed any safe way of sending. Mrs. Prevost had gone out, sick, in the summer, and there remained on hand the greater part of the year's supplies. These he sold, together with many personal effects, and with the proceeds was able to join himself to a band of pilgrims from Rampart, contributing an old horse and a dog team. There is a story that at some point of the journey the horse fell lame and was shot and abandoned beside the trail; that there came along immediately behind some enterprising chaps with a dog team, who skinned and butchered the carcase and, overtaking Mr. Prevost, sold some of it to him as moose meat. I have heard Mr. Prevost indignantly deny it, but I have also heard one of the vendors un-blushingly admit it.
The journey of nearly 700 miles was accomplished in forty-three days, and about the middle of April Mr. Prevost found himself amidst the throng camping on the tundra near the auriferous beach. By solicitation amongst the storekeepers and miners he managed to raise money enough to purchase two lots for mission purposes and to provide the material for a tent church with a lumber floor and framing. This he erected on his lots and immediately began conducting divine service. On the 15th July Bishop Rowe arrived, having reached the Yukon with ease and comfort by the new White Pass railway and descended it with but brief stops at his mission stations. His description of the scene on the beach as he approached it by the steamer from St. Michael, is vivid. "There lay the wonderful new mining camp, one dazzling gleam of white stretching for miles and miles along the store, the tents so closely packed as to make an unbroken line. Here and there rose some wooden buildings, with skeletons of others, for building was going on, and so rapidly that in a few hours the outlines of a house would appear. All around us lay vessels at anchor. Nearer shore lay wrecks which told of the furious storm of two weeks ago. The beach was strewed with wreckage and merchandise of all sorts was piled high on the tundra."
The revenue cutter Bear, on which he was to make his long-expected visit to Point Hope, lay at anchor, but as three weeks elapsed before she sailed for the north, he set to work helping Mr. Prevost to turn the tent church into a permanent structure. Three days later the Rev. C. H. H. Bloor arrived, appointed to the charge of the mission, and at once joined his efforts to theirs. The Bishop and Mr. Prevost worked on the building, with such assistance as they could procure from time to time, while Mr. Bloor cooked for the party and washed the dishes. Says the Bishop, "It was a sight; from four to six men sitting on the floor in the tent, satisfying hunger, using three tin cups, one bowl, three 'schooners', four knives and three forks."
So St. Mary's at Nome arose, the first, and at that time, the only church in the place, though others followed very shortly. It is necessary to have knowledge of the coast and climate to fill in the narrative to its due proportions; the rains that turn the tracks over the tundra to bottomless muck, the high chill winds that at times, even in summer, sweep over the naked flats, the swarms of mosquitoes that descend upon man and beast whenever the winds cease. The mere incident of landing at Nome is an adventure; there is no harbour at all; it is an open roadstead and vessels sometimes lie at anchor for a week or ten days before they are able to discharge cargo or passengers, tossed about in the choppy waters of Bering Sea. You might search the coast lines of the world in vain to find a more ineligible site for a town than Nome occupies. On the Bishop's first visit to the Bear the open boat in which he landed from the ship was swamped and capsized in the surf of the beach. He jumped when he saw what was about to happen and was thus able to rescue the two men he had hired to row him out, who were imprisoned within the overturned boat. A thorough wetting is still a not uncommon accompaniment to landing at Nome. One of the things that struck the present writer most forcibly upon his first visit to Nome, five years later, was the mass of strange-looking rusty machinery that still burdened the beach. All sorts of ingenious complicated engines had been devised for the quick and easy extraction of gold, and there they yet lay as they had been landed, their uselessness so evident that no attempt was ever made to employ them.
What a story it is, and what reflections arise when it is recalled! The mad eagerness for wealth which was of course the original motive, led in its train a spirit of high enterprise that often overrode its prime incentive entirely and flung itself gleefully at the conquest of obstacles for sheer love of the conquest. A superabundant animal vitality found outlet in animal ways, in foolhardiness, in licentiousness, in reckless temptings of fortune. A ready sloughing of irksome conventions often stripped off with them all the restraints of conscience in an environment that did not attempt much discrimination between the two. Into such principality of the flesh, the devil jubilantly enters and works his will of sin, and into such it was the mission of the Church at place after place in Alaska to enter with the solemn reminder of spiritual truth and spiritual responsibility; with the solemn reminder that the wages of sin is death. There was, I think, always a response, sometimes a surprisingly eager response; the religious instincts of mankind are ineradicable, however overlain with things of the world and the flesh. There is always respect for the office of a minister of religion, though that respect is largely conditioned upon the person, upon the general judgment of his sincerity and manliness. And there was never such community yet where a company could not be gathered that would take a stand for righteousness and clean living.
The Bishop made his visit to Point Hope and returned, and Mr. Prevost and Mr. Bloor were still working at building, for a residence must be erected against the winter as well as a church. Then Mr. Prevost, on his way outside on furlough, at the Bishop's request stopped off at the new town of Valdez at the head of Prince William's Sound, and laid the foundations of the Church there also.
There could be few greater contrasts than that between the situation of Nome and Valdez. In a bay at the head of Prince William's Sound, one of the two great arms of the sea that break into the southwestern coast of Alaska, the port of Valdez is surrounded by lofty glacier-bearing mountains, while right behind the town rises abruptly the rugged ice-masses of the Valdez glacier itself. The whole region is exceptionally bold and difficult, and, owing to the immense annual precipitation, the jagged mountain-walled inlets into which the coast is vandyked receive the ice-discharges of hundreds of glaciers, large and small. The Kenai peninsula which separates the sound from Cook's Inlet is almost entirely occupied by the Kenai mountains, ice-capped and in great part still unexplored. On the other side of the sound the Copper River cuts its way for an hundred miles through the bluffs and precipices of the Chugach mountains, some of the glaciers from which discharge into that river and at times dam its turbulent stream. It is a region of soaring black rock and gathering-basins of snow from which the glaciers issue; a region of gloomy majesty, though it can sparkle with hard dazzling beauty when its overcast skies give place to the splendour of the sun.
Besides being the nearest port to a richly-mineralized country, Valdez at that time promised to be, and for a number of years proved to be, a gateway to the interior. The port of Valdez was so named by Don Salvador Fidalgo, a Spanish navigator who visited these parts in 1790, and is one of our few coast place-names not derived from Cook, Vancouver, the natives or the Russians. Cordova is another. Over the difficult Valdez glacier it is said that three thousand prospectors toiled on the way into the interior in 1898; most of them returning discomfited by the same laborious and dangerous way; from which it may be seen how difficult it is to penetrate to the interior from the southwestern coast. Nevertheless, when Fairbanks arose to dominant importance in the interior, a practicable stage route was constructed with much engineering skill, and a regular service maintained, on wheels in summer and on runners in winter, something like a million dollars being expended by the government upon this highway. At this time (1900), when Fairbanks was not yet existent, much interest was displayed in an "ail-American route" to the Yukon, which began at Valdez and was to pass across country to Eagle. The discovery of the Keystone Canon avoided the passage of the Valdez glacier and rendered the route practicable, the trail was "swamped-out" along the whole distance and in the easier portions some grading work was done, but it was never put to real use because the White Pass railway soon afforded an incomparably easier approach to Eagle and its neighbourhood. A military telegraph was constructed along the whole line of this "all-American route" inhabited only by scattered bands of Indians, and for years was maintained "for strategic reasons" at enormous expense, with detachments of the Signal Corps every forty miles. It may be doubted if the crimes that have disgraced the name of liberty be any more numerous than the futile extravagancies that have been justified by the word strategy.
The towns that have sprung up along the southeastern and southwestern shores of Alaska, open to navigation the year round, are far more substantially founded than the towns of the interior or of the arctic shores, chiefly because they have other resources and dependence than placer gold mining. Rock, bearing veins of gold or copper, has been found and worked near all of them, in some places in a very extensive way; fishing for packing and export gives employment to many hands; permanent industries have brought permanent population, and these towns, however they may fluctuate from time to time, need not fear the coming of the day when the wilderness will reclaim their sites and the fox and the wolf roam undisturbed through them.
Valdez, indeed, has been unfortunate in that the Copper River railway, built at a cost of $20,000,000 by the Guggenheim-Morgan syndicate to bring the wealth of the Kennicott copper mine to tidewater, finds its outlet at Cordova, one hundred miles to the east, and that the government railway to the Matanuska coal field and to navigable water of the interior, built at more than twice the cost mentioned, has its terminus at Seward, two hundred miles to the southwest. The former has already displaced Valdez as the ocean end of the Fairbanks highway, and the latter will replace them both as the port of entry for the interior when the railway is complete.
But all this was in the womb of the future when the Rev. Jules Prevost arrived late in August, 1900, and built a small chapel at a cost of $600, on lots given him by the townspeople, naming it for the Epiphany. The Bishop had no clergyman to send, so when Mr. Prevost left he licensed a lay reader and Sunday services at least were maintained.
This, then, was the fourth important mission started by Mr. Prevost: Circle City and Rampart on the Yukon, Nome and Valdez on the coast, owing their origin to him. In all of them his buildings were the first church structures of any kind, and in most--if not all of them--the services he conducted were the first religious exercises ever held.
Meanwhile the Bishop had gone from Nome into the interior by way of St. Michael and the Yukon, "freezing in" at the new mission site at Tanana, working with his own hands for a couple of months with Mr. Selden at the building of the new church, and spending the following winter in a long journey with a sled from post to post. An epidemic of measles wrought havoc among the natives of the lower river, the germs doubtless introduced into the country with the rush to Nome.
Smallpox had ravaged the people long before, the first epidemic being of Russian origin away back in 1836, and diphtheria was yet to come. But this scourge of measles was probably more fatal along the coast and on the lower Yukon than either the one or the other. It is thought that as far up as Holy Cross half the natives died. Anvik suffered severely, and although the infection diminished in virulence as it ascended the river, it was felt along the whole course. The Bishop's reports are full of tender compassion for these people, and of his efforts to ameliorate their condition. Already he has begun his almost fruitless appeals to the national government to provide medical relief. Already at station after station small makeshift hospital buildings are in charge of nurses--at Anvik, at Rampart, at Circle; the state of transition at Tanana having temporarily intermitted such work there.
The winter was a severe one, extreme cold accompanying heavy snow, and the Bishop was on the trail through its periods of greatest severity. There was scarcity of money as well as scarcity of dogs, and for a part of the winter he was pulling his sled with the aid of only one dog, and that one a gift from a trader, who told me long after, "I needed the dog myself, but I couldn't see the Bishop start out through the Yukon Flats pulling his sled by the back of his neck." Much of the time, also, he was without any companion. It is evident that the Bishop took tremendous chances during that first winter on the trail, and it is evident in the retrospect of his report that he recognizes it himself. "Humbly and gratefully do I acknowledge the loving kindness of God Who has kept and preserved me in all safety," he writes. With a temperature ranging for weeks between 50° and 60° below zero, with the dangers of "blow-holes" and open water, with the chance of being entirely lost amidst the maze of channels in the Yukon Flats, the thick mist of condensing evaporation hanging low over the ice as it does at such temperatures, when to reach a cabin for the night was essential to the preservation of life--to travel alone or without a companion having local knowledge under such conditions is risky in the extreme. The present writer has travelled under such conditions, but not alone; he has travelled alone but not under such conditions; increasing experience has brought increasing caution and he will not now travel under such conditions at all, if he can help it, nor alone on the winter trail under any conditions short of a life-or-death matter. The Bishop never, I think, travelled alone again, though he sometimes had companions who were little use to him. The first winter is not usually so fraught with danger as the second; by that time the "musher" begins to have a delusion that he is a veteran, begins to rely upon his judgment and quote his experience. It is most commonly at this stage that his pride has a fall.
The snowshoe brings into play unaccustomed muscles, like mountain climbing, and the Bishop was on snowshoes the whole winter through, often lame and painfully stiff, hobbling ahead of his dog with a line around his shoulders. The reader can imagine with what joy the weary traveller was received at the mission stations, how eagerly the people, especially the native people, crowded around him, how the church bell rang in welcome and rifles were fired for joy. But unless the reader himself know the fatigue and the hardship of such travel he would scarcely realize how rarely a man keeps temper and speech sweet, keeps amiability undiminished, under its stress. Yet no one in Alaska ever saw Bishop Rowe lose his temper or heard him other than gentle and kind of tongue. The occasions of these visits, long ago, are still recalled, and some of the old Indian women can at any time tell you to a day how long it is since the last visit of the Bishop.
The end of the century, which saw the Bishop in the sixth year of his episcopate, saw the Church well established in Alaska, both on the coast and in the interior, and with the end of the century we may bring this chapter to a close.
The following missions had been founded and were in operation: Christ Church, Anvik; St. James's, Fort Adams-Tanana (for it was in part at one place and in part at another); St. Andrew's, Rampart; St. Stephen's, Fort Yukon; The Heavenly Rest, Circle City (I know not who was responsible for that name, but it does not sound like the Bishop); St. Thomas's, Point Hope; St. Mary's, Nome; Epiphany, Valdez; St. Peter 's-by-the-Sea, Sitka; Trinity, Juneau; St. Luke's, Douglas Island; St. Agnes's, Ketchikan; Our Saviour, Skagway--thirteen churches in all, with a number of dependent stations. There were seven clergy canonically resident, one postulant (Dr. Driggs) and one candidate for Holy Orders (Mr. A. R. Hoare). There were ten licensed lay readers (white) and six natives. Seven white women workers were employed. One boarding school (Anvik) and seven native day schools were maintained. There were three hospitals in the jurisdiction. A monthly missionary paper, The Crossbearer, was issued by the Rev. James G. Cameron at Skagway.