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Northern People, Northern Knowledge - 
The Story Of The Canadian Arctic Expedition 1913 - 1918
The People of the CAE: Leaders, Scientists, Captains And Crews, Local Assistants
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Southern Party

Captains and Crews:

Daniel Blue
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.

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Daniel Blue, engineer of CGS Alaska, holding up tent frame, after taking off cover, Hulahula River, northern Alaska, March 30, 1914. RMA 38813. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

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 22, 1915)

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Daniel W. Blue, engineer on the CAE schooner CGS Alaska, with his dogteam at Collinson Point, northern Alaska. March 11, 1914. FJ 42162. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

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.

Andre Norem,
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.

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Andre Norem, cook, standing on top of ice pile, cutting freshwater ice, Collinson Point, northern Alaska, March 11, 1914. FJ 42161. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

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].

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James Sullivan, CAE cook, Bernard Harbour, Nunavut. July 5, 1916. GHW 51198. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

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James Sullivan, cook of CAE schooner Alaska and CAE camp, in shirt sleeves, cooks apron, Bernard Harbour, Nunavut. April 11, 1916. RMA 39563. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

Daniel Sweeney
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.

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Daniel Sweeney, captain of the Alaska, Bernard Harbour, Nunavut. July 6, 1916. RMA 39563. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

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Daniel Sweeney, sailing master of expedition schooner CGS Alaska, Bernard Harbour, Nunavut. February 1916. KGC 43301. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization

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 ceremony:
"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.

Pittsburgh Pa
Nov the 9 1916

Dear doctor
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
write soon
Daniel Sweeney
1210 Oething st
Sherdan station

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 north:
"You were asking me about Dan Sweeney I heard that he has been run over by a railroad engine about five years ago [1919] 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).

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Unalina Agnavigak, Eunice, the Inuk wife of Captain Daniel Sweeney, and Annie, daughter of Ambrose Agnavigak and Unalina, Bernard Harbour, Nunavut. March 1? 1916. JJO 38633. Source: Canadian Museum of Civilization