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Treasured Memories

Submitted by Anne L. Foster, Archivist
Phone: (907) 474-5590


Images of UA from Two Alumni Albums, a new exhibit from the Alaska and Polar Regions Collections, Elmer E. Rasmuson Library, University of Alaska Fairbanks, opens this weekend.

The exhibit, which coincides with Starvation Gulch Alumni activities, celebrates the college campus of the late 1940s and early 1950s as depicted by two UA alums, John Sigler and Caroline Mina McLain Reader. Curated by Anne Foster and Kathy Arndt, the exhibit includes images of social events, sports, and classroom activities. The exhibit is located on the 2nd floor of the Elmer E. Rasmuson Library and is open during regular library hours through January 2006.

John Sigler grew up in Hollywood, California, and served in the South Pacific during World War II. Looking for "some place cooler" after his discharge, he ended up attending the University of Alaska on the GI Bill. His photos document all aspects of campus life and various Fairbanks events in the years 1949-1951. His work appeared not only in the campus yearbook, but in the campus paper and the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. Sigler graduated from UA in 1951 with a degree in biology and went on to earn a master's degree in botany.

Caroline Mina McLain Reader grew up in Belmont Point, Alaska, near Nome. The daughter of Gold Rush pioneers Arthur and Carrie M. McLain, Reader found her hometown and ideal place to grow up. Graduating in 1946 as valedictorian of her class of three, she headed for college at the University of Alaska. Reader completed her degree in elementary education, with a minor in biological sciences, in May of 1950. After graduation, she worked first as a teacher in Nome. She retired in 1984 and is active in the UAF Alumni Association. Her album spans the years 1948 to 1995 and documents her academic and social activities on campus as well as alumni events.

The Alaska and Polar Regions (APR) Collections acquires, preserves and provides access to materials that document the past and present of Alaska and the polar regions, both Arctic and Antarctic. The APR Research Room, which includes archives and manuscripts, rare books and maps, and oral history, is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. The APR reading area, which houses the book and periodical collections, is open during regular Library hours.

For more information, visit http://www.uaf.edu/library/apr/ .