Captains and Crews:
Daniel W. Blue was hired as engineer for the schooner Alaska in March 1914,
and served with the Expedition until his death from pneumonia in May 1915 at Baillie
Islands. As well as looking after the Alaska, Blue joined other Expedition
activities and travelled with his own dog team with Anderson into the mountains
south of Collinson Point to hunt for meat in March 1914.
The diaries of R.M. Anderson and Diamond Jenness provide a
summary of Blue's life and death:
"Blue, the engineer, is said to be fairly capable. He was running his own
gold mine near Nome for 2 or 3 years, but had bad luck - the mine flooded and
he lost pretty well everything, so he was glad to take this job" (Diamond
Jenness Diary March 25, 1914).
"Nov. 22, 1915-Monday, con. BERNARD HARBOR, N.W.T.
Mr. Daniel Wallace Blue, Engineer of the Alaska died May 2nd, at 4:35 a.m. having
been sick in bed for ten days. His death was apparently caused by pneumonia or
inflammation of the lungs. He had a touch of scurvy,
or what they thought was scurvy. Mr. Blue was an old-timer in Alaska he had
come to Alaska in 1906, worked around Cordova, Copper River, Tanana, Kobak River,
and Nome, prospecting and mining. He was a native of Scotland, and learned the
machinist's trade (steam engineering) in Glasgow" (R.M. Anderson Diary November
Captain Otto Nahmens
Otto Nahmens was an American who had "followed sea around Nome and had been
a miner there" (Stefansson 1921). He was hired in July 1913 at Nome by Stefansson
to be captain of the Alaska. Nahmens left the CAE in June of 1914.
Norem was hired along with the rest of the Mary Sachs crew in Nome in 1913.
He served as cook on the Mary Sachs and helped with general Expedition
work through the winter of 1913-14. He committed suicide at Collinson Point, northern
Alaska, in April 1914.
James "Cockney" Sullivan
Sullivan was a 28-year old cabin boy on the Herman when he was hired as
cook for the Alaska by Dr. Anderson at Herschel Island in August 1914.
"Cockney" was cook on the Mary Sachs and also travelled with
Dr. Anderson on one of his collecting expeditions from Bernard Harbour.
Sullivan returned south with the Southern Party, then served
in the First World War after enlisting in Victoria, B.C. He was discharged because
of problems with his feet, partially caused by them being frozen in 1911 and in
1915, during his time with the Canadian Arctic Expedition.
Sullivan moved to the USA and was living in Seattle in 1919.
In letters to Dr. R. M. Anderson, Aarnout Castel wrote: "I saw cockney the
other day and he is married again. How many times that makes I dont know"
[Seattle May 10th 1919] and: "The cook Jim Sullivan is here in Seattle has
been here for the last five years is married and has one child" [Seattle,
January 14, 1924].
Daniel Sweeney was an American hired by Stefansson from the whaler Belvedere.
He had been a whaler in the Arctic for many years. He replaced Captain Nahmens
as master of the Alaska from 1914 to 1916.
Sweeney married Angayu Annarihopopiak (also known as Eunice)
from the Herschel Island area, in 1915. In late January the Alaska had
taken an Inupiat woman, Ungayou, on board for medical attention, as they were
afraid she would die of her illness if left ashore. Two weeks later, following
her recovery, she and Captain Sweeney were married according to the local Inuit
custom. In April, the travelling Anglican Minister performed the official marriage
"Weather stormy, wind E. Temp + 7 [F]. Barometer 30.05... Mr. Sweeney was
married by the missionary (Mr. Girling) to a native woman named Angashak this
evening at 8 pm." (D.W. Blue Diary. April 12, 1915). On 16 July 1916, while
Alaska was moving through thick fog near Victoria Island, during the trip
out to Herschel Island, Mrs. Sweeney gave birth to their son, Daniel Jr. That
day a fresh wind and heavy swell led to considerable seasickness on board.
From Dr. Anderson's diary we learn that Sweeney bought the
former CAE schooner Gladiator from Ole
Andreason for $2,000.00 cash in Nome in 1916. (The schooner had been bought
from Captain Fritz Wolki by Stefansson in 1915, traded to Captain Louis Lane,
who in turn traded it to Ole Andreason). Captain Sweeney had intended to go north
again in the fall of 1916. A letter from Sweeney in Pittsburgh, USA, to Anderson
in November 1916 relates the failure of his expedition to salvage Captain Lane's
new Arctic trading ship the Great Bear.
Nov the 9 1916
am writing you a few lines to let you no that am home insted ofe up in the arctic
i went over to saint mathew Island to salvage the great bear it cost me 200 dollars
espense to make that tripe i found her but could not do any thing withe her verry
heavy sea running all the time spent 28 days over their but lost my fallse keel
and one anchor.
... am tired of this part of the world all ready and will
be glad to get back to the North i had the gladiator hauled out on nome beach...
... lost all my papers for the gladiator had my grip stole
in chiago union station will be hear till March then will start west.
regards to all the boys
1210 Oething st
In a letter to Sweeney, Anderson expressed his sorrow at hearing
that Daniel Jr. had died in 1917 (R.M. Anderson, letter to D. Sweeney).
Unfortunately, it seems that Sweeney was not able to get back
"You were asking me about Dan Sweeney I heard that he has been run over by
a railroad engine about five years ago  and died in Pitsburg." (Letter
from Aarnout Castel [Seattle, January 14, 1924] to Dr. R. M. Anderson, Ottawa.
Canadian Museum of Nature Archives)
Angayu (Eunice Sweeney)
"Mrs. Daniel Sweeney gave birth to a son, Daniel Sweeney Jr. and 10:40 a.m.
after about 1 1/2 hrs. labor. She was up again in about an hour. Mother named
Angayu, baptized Eunice" (R.M.Anderson Diary, July 15, 1916).
"Nunaluk. ...we ran back about a mile and inside of the
ice strip, so that Captain Sweeney's wife Eunice could be landed at Kamarkuk,
about 30 miles west of Herschell Island, where her parents are supposed to be....
Landed Mrs. Sweeney's stuff here, (purchased by Sweeney and deducted from his
account).... Several Eskimo tents there" (R.M. Anderson Diary, August 3,
1916, Arctic Coast of Yukon Territory).