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Alaska forum. [volume] : (Rampart, Alaska) 1900-1906
Place of publication:
Rampart, Alaska
Geographic coverage:
  • Rampart, Alaska  |  View more titles from this: City State
Forum Pub. Co.
Dates of publication:
  • Vol. 1, no. 1 (Sept. 27, 1900)-v. 11, no. 5 (Aug. 4, 1906).
  • English
  • Alaska--Rampart.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01298606
  • Rampart (Alaska)--Newspapers.
  • Includes extra editions.
  • Suspended with July 9, 1904 issue; resumed with Oct. 15, 1904 issue.
  • Vol. numbering irregular.
sn 90065065
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Alaska forum. [volume] September 27, 1900 , Image 1


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Alaska Forum

The weekly Alaska Forum first appeared in Rampart, Alaska on September 27, 1900, with William R. Edwards as the editor and James B. Wingate as the manager. The two leased a printing press from the Tanana Mission, which had previously been used to produce the Yukon Press. In the first issue the Forum promised to be "fearless in the publication of what it considers news of interest to the public" and said that it would be printed "for the benefit and profit of the people."

Evangeline Atwood and Lew Williams, Jr., in Bent Pins to Chains, wrote that Edwards sold his share of the paper in 1901 and Wingate became a much bolder advocate for social and governmental reforms; they elaborate that the paper was eventually censored by residents of local influence because of Wingate's bold positions, leading to the Tanana Mission demanding its press back. The Forum was suspended in August and September 1904, while Wingate secured another press. Wingate himself, in his first issue back on October 15, 1904, blamed this "piece of dirty work" on an "itinerant dentist and an ex-Dawson black-jack booster, assisted by Rev. J. E. Huhn" and called the city commissioner, J. Lindley Green, a "henchman" for refusing to accept his bond for the press. Wingate swiftly secured a new press which was a "combination of the features of the platen and Washington hand-press" and operated by foot power. Wingate elaborated that the "lathe upon which the shafting and fixtures used in its construction was turned, was run by dog-power" and the Forum was being printed on a "five dog-power press."

Wingate's views caused him to butt heads frequently with editor Sam Callahan of the Yukon Valley News, which Wingate called a "cloven-footed contemporary" in the Forum's final issue. Wingate was strongly opposed to the commissioner J. Lindley Green and the territorial delegate Judge Wickersham, both of whom were supported by the Yukon Valley News. When the Yukon Valley News opposed a campaign to remove Green, Wingate remarked that the article was probably written by Green who "owns a large share of that paper." Wingate similarly accused the Yukon Valley News of being beholden to Wickersham for helping its editor, Callahan, to secure a liquor license, and called the paper an organ for Wickersham. The Forum was published through August 4, 1906, at which point Wingate decided to focus on his mining interests, according to Atwood and Williams, Jr.

Provided by: Alaska State Library Historical Collections