Gamblers And Dreamers
Women, Men, And Community In The KlondikeBook - 1998
The popular image of the Klondike is of a rush of white, maleadventurers who overcame great physical and geographical obstacles intheir quest for gold. Young, white, single American men carried forwardthe ideals and structures of the western frontier. It was a man'sworld made respectable only after the turn of the century with thearrival of white, middle class women who miraculously swept out thecorners of dirt and vice and 'civilized' the society. Theseimpressions endure despite recent attempts to correct them.
Gamblers and Dreamers tackles some of the myths about thehistory of the North in the era of the gold rush. Though manyinhabitants came and went, Charlene Porsild focuses on the concept ofcommunity commitment to show that many put down roots. This in-depthstudy of Dawson City at the turn of the century reveals that the cityhad a cosmopolitan character, a stratified society, and a definitepermanence. It examines the lives of First Nations peoples, miners andother labourers, professionals, merchants, dance hall performers andsex trade workers, providing fascinating detail about those who lefthomes and jobs to strike it rich in the last great gold rush of thenineteenth century. In the process, Gamblers and Dreamers putsa human face on this compelling period of history.