Thursday, April 4, 2013

If this is Thursday it must be postcards, 85

 Cascade Falls, on Unalaska Island, near Cape Cheerful, Alaska


Here is another wilderness type postcard, unused, showing a man in a small boat or canoe in the lake at the foot of Cascade Falls, on Unalaska Island, near Cape Cheerful, Alaska.   It is possible to date the postcard from 1908 or 1909 since it has the Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition of 1909 emblem on the reverse.  The card was published by the Portland Post Card Co., of Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington.  There is a divided back with a very narrow space for a message.  F. H. Nowell the official photographer for the 1909 Fair took the original picture.   This version of the photo has been cropped and printed vertically while the original is a horizontal view that shows more of the lake and hillside.  Like many other cards of this era, it was a black & white photo that was colored in before reproduction as a postcard.  

Postage amounts are noted in the space where the stamp should be placed with domestic postage listed as 1 cent and foreign postage at 2 cents.  It is interesting to note that the domestic postage rate included Island Possessions, Canada, Cuba, Mexico and Panama. 

Unalaska Island is one of the Aleutian Islands off the west coast of mainland Alaska.  The town of Unalaska is located on the island of the same name and also on the neighboring island of Amaknak.  The two islands are connected by a bridge.  The population is only about 4400 with all the community’s port facilities on Amaknak Island, also known as Dutch Harbor, a Naval Operating Base.  The U.S. Army base, Fort Mears, is located there as well and the area is a U.S. National Historic Landmark. 

Native peoples have lived on Unalaska for thousands of years.  The Russian fur trade started here in 1759.  Dutch Harbor was named by the Russians because they believed the first European vessel to reach the harbor was a Dutch ship. 

As a trivia note, since 2005 the Discovery Channel’s documentary show “Deadliest Catch” has focused on fishermen who are based in Dutch Harbor. 

For more about Unalaska see:,_Alaska

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