1897 Women’s Survival Kit

The following suggestions were made to women in order to survive in the Klondike. The women that were strong and stubborn that followed their husbands, fathers and brothers in the fever for gold complied this survival kit.  I found it interesting and I decided to share it.

Women must be properly clothed and equipped for the trip to the interior. The most important item is proper footwear. Some women have worn shoes that are three times larger than one’s foot. It is not necessary. Get a shoe that fits. If the sole is not very heavy, have an extra one added. Moccasins can be purchased from the Indians. The tall bicycle shoe with extra sole would make an excellent walking shoe. A pair of rubbers fitted to these might come in handy during the rainy season. A woman should start out with these items:

  • 1 pair house slippers
  • 1 pair knitted slippers
  • 1 pair heavy soled walking shoes
  • 1 pair Arctics
  • 1 pair felt boots
  • 1 pair German socks
  • 1 pair heavy gum boots
  • 1 pair ice creepers
  • 3 pair heavy wool stockings
  • 3 pair summer stockings

A ready-sewed tick would be nice to have, for it can be filled with dried moss and makes a good pioneer mattress. Also 1 feather pillow, 1 rubber blanket, 1 piece of canvas, and 3 or 4 wool blankets would make a snug bed. Some people have tried sleeping bags and have been disappointed in them. A piece of canvas 5 x 14 feet can take its place. Fold half of the canvas on the ground, place your bedding on it, and draw the other half over you. Thus you are protected from the dampness and the wind. If you are caught in a blizzard without a tent, you can stretch the canvas over a pole and have a temporary tent.

In the way of wearing apparel, a woman can get by in comfort with these items:

  • 1 good dress
  • 1 suit heavy mackinaw, waist, and bloomers
  • 1 summer suit
  • 3 short skirts of heavy duck or denim to wear over bloomers
  • 3 suits winter underwear
  • 3 suits summer underwear
  • 1 chamois undervest
  • 1 long sack nightdress made of flannel or elderdown
  • 1 cotton nightdress
  • 2 pair Arctic mittens
  • 1 pair heavy wool gloves
  • 1 cap
  • 1 Arctic hood
  • 1 hat with brim broad enough to hold mosquito netting away from face
  • 1 summer dress
  • 3 aprons
  • 2 wrappers
  • 2 shirt waists
  • snow glasses
  • summer gloves to protect from mosquitoes
  • satchel

When an Alaskan outfit is packed down in a canvas bag, it takes too long to search for what you need. Try using 3 canvas bags instead. One can be used for the bedding, another for the wearing apparel, and the last for foot wear. It makes unpacking and repacking unnecessary.

A good-sized mess box with a hinge cover and lock, containing enough food for the trip will be a great convenience and avoids the extra work of opening sacks and boxes at every camp. Some camp sites have commissary departments to purchase items such as butter and evaporated eggs. These items are useful in your mess box:

  • flour
  • bacon
  • salt
  • yeast
  • pepper
  • rice
  • beans
  • sugar
  • cornmeal
  • dried fruits
  • baking powder
  • condensed cream
  • beef extract
  • pilot bread
  • canned meats
  • chocolate

I wonder how those women carried all those belongings, don’t you?IMG_0848

 

 

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Sign of the Ages

I saw this club sign in Juneau and thought it was funny.20170801_084906_001 Juneau club