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At the heart of the rescue expedition lies another, in some ways more compelling, journey. In a Far Country is ...
At the heart of the rescue expedition lies another, in some ways more compelling, journey. In a Far Country is the personal odyssey of Tom and his wife Ellen Lopp— their commitment to the natives and the rugged but happy life they built for themselves amid a treeless tundra at the top of the world. The Lopps pulled through on grit and wits, on humility and humor, on trust and love, and by the grace of God. Their accomplishment would surely have received broader acclaim had it not been eclipsed by two simultaneous events: the Spanish- American War and the Alaska gold rush. The United States and its territories were transformed abruptly and irrevocably by these fits of expansionist fever, and despite the thoughtful, determined guidance of the Lopps, the natives of the North were soon overwhelmed by a force mightier than the fiercest Arctic winter: the twentieth century.
Posted February 13, 2008
Posted February 16, 2007
Two endearing characters give the reader a realistic picture of 1890's Alaska through the eyes of non-natives. A not so rosy picture of the whaling and mining industries and its impact on the natives in Alaska at that time. The Lopps, stationed in a town along the frigid waters of the Bering Strait, are culturally-sensitive missionaries who set out to bring Christianity to the natives of Alaska but end up learning more from the natives over their 12 or so years while stationed there. In spite of the frigid conditions, lack of even the basics,lack of communication with their lower 48 relatives, the Lopps revel in their life in Alaska, the life they make for themselves, their children and the natives. Well-researched story of the Overland Relief Expedition (which I knew nothing about) to bring supplies to whalers who got themselves iced in for the winter during 1898. Great history of reindeer/caribou populations. This book gives the reader a great sense of the geography of Alaska I flipped back and forth between the map and the story. So now I know where the Chuckchi Sea is! Don't forget to read the epilogue...it sheds a lot of light on the Lopps' years after leaving Alaska for Seattle. The Bibliography is well-worth perusing as well.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.