Empire Of The Winds

In the Aleutian Islands you can explore a landscape of violent beauty, discover the traces of an all-but-forgotten war, and (just possibly) catch a $100,000 fish

 

One summer 30 years ago I found myself on a DC-3 bound for Unalaska, my string bass strapped into the seat next to me. I anchored the rhythm section of a high school band in Anchorage, and we were going to show students in this remote village on the Aleutian chain how much fun it could be to play a musical instrument.

 
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Sailors, Ships & Seatowns

Images of the Maritime West

Here is a bit of the old West nobody knows—or almost nobody—the West generally overlooked by both the fastdraw myth-makers and the scholars from the Land of Ivy. The cowpoke and the cardsharp, the sodbuster, the gunslinger, the prospector, the men who went down in the mines or up in the trees, ladies of the night and gentlemen of the road have all been popularized and exploited, analyzed and monographed. But scarce a word about poor Jack, who kept it all together out where the dust stopped short. Read more »

The Adventures Of A Haunted Whaling Man

The exacting, colorful, and often perilous career of a whaleman of the last century is known to most readers only through such fiction a Moby Dick . But many a real American went “down to the sea in ships” from East Coast whaling ports, experiencing the loneliness, exhilaration, and dangers that Herman Melville described. One of them was Robert Weir, a tormented nineteen-year-old, who in the summer of 1855 left his home in Cold Spring, New York, where he had worked in the local iron foundry.Read more »