This week Kiley takes some dogs on a long cold run, and Jonathan does exactly the opposite and strolls through the dynasty of a very tropical monarchy.
Topics: The Serum Run with Balto and Togo, Queen Regent Lili'uokalani of the Hawiian Kingdom.
Music: "Another Day" by The Fisherman.
You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and visit our website at www.halfwit-history.com!
Reach Out, Say Hi, or Suggest a Topic at Halfwitpod@gmail.com
Support the show (https://www.ko-fi.com/halfwithistory)
This week Kiley takes some dogs on a long cold run, and Jonathan does exactly the opposite and strolls through the dynasty of a very tropical monarchy.
Topics: The Serum Run with Balto and Togo, Queen Regent Lili'uokalani of the Hawiian Kingdom.
Music: "Another Day" by The Fisherman.
You can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and visit our website at www.halfwit-history.com!
Reach Out, Say Hi, or Suggest a Topic at Halfwitpod@gmail.com
Support the show (https://www.ko-fi.com/halfwithistory)
Hi. Welcome to have one history. I'm Jonathan and I'm Kylie. And this is a show where we talk about the upcoming week for a long time
ago. And for once, it is actually the upcoming week and it
shall stay this way forever.
We can only hope
Yes, because man is catching up bad.
It was so hard. Oh, my gosh. Huh?
Anyways, you got any, uh,
Pete's? No, I do. Oh,
So, firstly, if you haven't heard yet, we will launch a new podcast last week going over What's in Failed Critz? An actual play podcast featuring the two of us and a few of our friends. The first season is us playing Dungeons and Dragons over the last two years. And the second season will be us playing a game called Stars without Number, which is a scifi game that we're starting to record. Oh, right now we're on all major podcast platform, so check that out, please. Yeah, second update, we're leaving Patri on for coffee. Felt Te'o dash f I
phi Ko Phi s o. I just wanted to be clear that the reason we're doing this is that Ko Phi doesn't take a percentage of our earnings, meaning it's more money to us and more transparent where your money is going. If you choose to support us, which I'm all about transparency with money. And it also lets you send us one time contributions, which wasn't possible with Patri on. So I thought that was kind of neat.
Yeah, it's a really it's nice that delight be able to do that, cause there's definitely times where I'm like. I'd really like to throw someone a contribution, but I don't really I can't really do it every month. Motley's hard. Yeah, it's like it's harder just because you don't you don't necessarily like if you live like we do where it's kind of paycheck to paycheck, especially because we're planning a wedding and trying to save for a wedding. It's a lot harder to commit to
that kind of thing. So right, so we wanted to help give you guys options to support us in whichever way you felt best. Yes. Okay. When is your topic?
I am 1925 0 I win. Oh, should we also mention what we get is
No, I think we're good. I think we just need to do that because we were behind. So we need to let people know when we were recording for okay? I don't know. Let us know, unlike Twitter or whatever. If you like us reading out what week we're doing or if you don't really care now that we're caught up
Well, for a case of insurance, this is the week of January 27th through February 2nd,
my topic is on January 29th of 18 91. Who and get ready cause I can on Lee. Imagine I'm about to just every other line butcher some names.
Oh, good. For once, it's not me.
Yeah. So, Leelee Whoa, Kalani Oh, isn't that that last barn arc and the only Queen Regent of the Kingdom of Hawaii? Ah, I said Hawaii, right? So before we get to the end of this monarchy, let's take a look at the history of Hawaii's government and Marquis. So before the islands of why unified, they were governed by different classes. These were the ally Kona, Kiki, Kahuna and likely a few others. The Hawaii, where the King's King's guard and other figures closest to the largest type of ruler ship, the Kona hickey were in charge of the socioeconomic duties of the islands. So while the ally he owned everything, it was the Kona Hickey that actually dealt with the day to day affairs of keeping everything in line. Then there were the kunas. They were in charge of the spiritual parts of Hawaiian life as well as being on the War Council for the ally.
This is really dumb, but all I can think of when you say cocoon is the Pokemon game.
Oh, uh, because it was Pamela.
Yeah, because the island kuna and I know it's based off of, like, Hawaiian like Polynesian kind of like culture and stuff. But for some reason, I'm just picturing that kahuna from Pokemon Sun and moon My mind Right now
all I pictured every time I wrote KUNA was rocket power. So
there's not due yet people that in, um, the Disney Channel movie with the surfer boy. And I can't remember the actor what the name of the movie was, but it was like, Yeah, that's not helpful. He, like, goes from he goes on. Hawaii's family moves to like Colorado. And so he's like this Hawaiian surfer guy who is now stuck in like a prep school in Colorado with all these fancy rich people who are like, Oh, you can't ski and all that stuff So he learns how to snowbird because it's similar to surfing. You're just looking at me blankly.
No, hold on, the further you got it, the closer I got to recognizing what itwas
okay. So, like, he learns to snowboard, and then he enters, like this competition or something, and, like, basically makes the mall look like losers. And then I think he goes back to visit his grandpa on Hawaii, and I'm pretty sure that's like where it ends.
Yes, that's it. Do you like my description of that blood?
It eventually got anyway. So then the Hawaiian Kingdom was formed in 19? Nope. In 17 95 when the two major families united Hawaii, Oahu, Maui, Molokai and Lynn I, under one government not certain how much of the previous structure of remained after the formation of the unified government. But just 15 years later, the entirety of the Hawaiian Kingdom would finish its unification when Hawaii and Knee I how joined the alliance. I think I said that last one more Japanese than Hawaiian. So during that time, there were two major dynastic families that ruled over the kingdom, and one of which would be very important to our story going forward. They were the house of Kamehameha and the house of colleague. Uh huh. Colic. Oh, uh, sure,
we'll go with it.
I also just repeatedly had to fashion to my skull. That is Camilo Mejia and not Kamehameha curse you Japanese. So the command me a dynasty started with command May of the Great from 18 10 to 18. 19. Side Note Command May of the Great probably has the longest full name I've ever seen. Second only to that guy from a fun fact we had a while ago. Yes, the name for every letter in the alphabet. So combative as name. Which boy this is gonna be rough Was Kehlani pie Idea. Whoa! He okay? Lee ae Keeney Ke Ali e Kui Command Maia Oh ee Oh Lonnie e ca e we cop Ooh, Kawika Lee! Holy Hoku knew a Kia Wow! Yes, That was commander of the greats. Full name. Wow! Obviously butchered everywhere but command So is major contributions to Hawaii are but are not limited to opening up international trade specifically with China for selling sandalwood and creating some humanitarian war laws, the most prominent being the law of splintered paddle, which stated that everyone has a right to safety. This was in response to pardoning two fishermen who broken or over his head, and we're supposed to be punished for it, but instead command. They apologized to the fishermen and that they had every right to defend themselves, as he was a great warrior who had previously attacked innocent people of that region.
Oh, all right.
Yeah. So I saw a little bit of the story on that, And it was He got stuck under a rock of some sort near a shoreline during one of these like battles that they had, like, long wars, and the two fishermen recognized him, and they were scared to kind of leave him there because they knew just how great of a warrior he was. So they took their or and hit him over the head of it, and they broke their or over said, assuming that he would just die there. Yeah, it was like quite a few years later, the same two fishermen were brought to his counsel after he became the the leader of all of Hawaii. And they were, like, fully expecting to get, like, wrath brought down on them. And he was just like, No, you're good. You had every right to do that. I was hurting that. Your people?
Yeah. In Maine, the
fishermen just stab and shoot each other. So that's fun. Cool. Yeah, Cool aside. So in 18 19 command May of the great died, And as per tradition, his body was hid. His location is unknown to this day.
Oh, that's interesting.
Yeah. So on Lee, two people know where knew where command may have. The great was put to rest. It was his friends. Ah, One of the reasons they did this was because they believed that the leaders of Hawaii were closer to different gods from religions, that they followed Ireland, that they contained manna from said gods. And they didn't want people disturbing the the mana of the Fallen kings.
Interesting. So, like almost the exact opposite of the Egyptians? Yes. Most conspicuous tomb you can imagine versus no one knows where I'm buried.
So interested at 1.1 of ah, Kah Mamma's sons asked one of his father's friends where they buried him, and they were going to show the sun where he was buried and about halfway there they stopped and turned around because they had a suspicion that they were being followed. And they didn't want to reveal his location to anyone other than an immediate relative.
So they, as far as I know, they never tried to show anyone else again. Wow, because they didn't want his resting place being found
me. It's nice that they were like that dedicated to
Oh yeah, So next came Command may have the second them 18 19 to 18 24 who was known for being a child ruler for a little bit. His mother, Ka Hoo Manu ruled during the time that commandment of the second was still a child, and she made strides toward making women and men more equal while she was in power, waiting for her son to take over.
Good for her.
Yeah, so come on, May the second would become known for abolishing religious laws. However, he would not give up on religion or convert to Christianity, which was becoming popular as more missionaries arrived in Hawaii who, because he loved having so many wives know he also really loved alcohol. Oh, neither of those things, I guess, were supported by not being under a religion. Like, I guess their religion was very supportive of alcohol.
I guess not being part of that religion maybe would have taken some of that away from him. And also Christianity definitely would've taken that away from him. So he died from measles. Well, visiting England. Ouch. Side note Hawaii went from an estimated 400 to 800,000 natives to just 90,000 natives in less than a century due to missionaries bringing diseases
Uh ah. Is this number number four in a row where we can say good job Christians?
Oh, uh, God, history. Stop bringing your communicable diseases to other people. I swear.
Yep. Given a bad name for good for some good people,
right? Like, yeah. Stop spreading your germs. Vaccinate your Children. Just just just vaccinate your Children.
So after that command, May of the third rolled from 18. 25 to 18. 54 was well known for transitioning Hawaii from an absolute monarchy. to a constitutional monarchy. He saw a great benefit in the ways of Western government modernization, but worked diligently to ensure that they could adopt such a constitution without sacrificing the Hawaiian way of life. That right here is a good stopping point in Hawaiian rulers for the sake of today's topic. Oh, since we caught up to the formation of a Constitution which has a lot to do with Leleu Kalani for the sake of completeness, though we still had command of the fourth man may have the 5th 1 single year of a ruler named Luna Lilo Now, and, uh, the last ruler before Liliuokalani was Kalla koa already Then So now that we're caught up, who was Leleu Kalani on January 29th of 18 91? Lily, you okay? Lani took the oath of office and became the first and only queen of the Hawaiian Kingdom.
Good for her.
One of her first actions as Queen was on March 9th, where she named her niece Ca Lu Lonnie as her future successor, which I thought was really cool because that was pretty much close to her first act and it was changing Hawaii to a matriarchy she did have. I like it. She did have both of her nephews as successors if her niece didn't survive to succeed her. But whatever the niece was, the first in line of succession
was in East the oldest.
I don't know. I don't look into it that much.
My guess would be probably. But
yeah. So this was also done with the approval of the House of nobles as acquired as required by the Hawaiian Constitution, with only one house voting against the plan of secession, which I also thought was kind of neat that they were all on board with it. Except for one. There's always one.
sign out of 10 doctors from 80 92 to January of 18 93 the queen remained in court. Historians will go on to call this the longest legislature in history, lasting 171 days total.
The major issues that were brought up during this legislative legislature was the passing of a lottery bill licensing opium relieving economic crisis created by taxes imposed by the future American President McKinley, Uh, and the creation of a new constitution. Nice. Once the Legislature recess, Lily Oh, Kilani met with her Newell newly elected Cabinet and focused on the creation of the new constitution back during the time of command. May of the fifth Rain, the constitution created by command of the third, was butchered by Europeans and Americans, gaining Hawaiian citizenship and creating more of an electorate rather than a market monarchy through elections into higher officers. By Queen Lily Bouquet Lonnie's time The Western influence on Hawaiian politics had reduced the throne to a mere figurehead.
Yeah, that sounds about right.
Yep. To regain power, she proposed a number of changes in her constitution, most notably removing the suffrage of non native to vote in Hawaiian elections, giving the queen power to choose the governors of the different islands and lowering the landowner's land ownership standards so that more natives could vote. This was obviously swiftly rejected by the increasingly Western Cabinet that had recently been elected. So while native Hawaiians waited outside the queen's balcony to hear the good news about the coming of a new constitutional queen, Liliuokalani had to bear the unfortunate news that the Constitution would have to wait and that they should all return home. Oh, yeah, however, groups within the government didn't believe that the queen was telling the truth and that she would secretly push this constitution through. So they formed the Committee of Safety. Oh, boy. The Committee of Safety, as Wikipedia says, was compromised by six Hawaiian subjects. Five American citizens, a German shove subject and a British subject. But after looking a little more closely into these Hawaiian subjects, they were all white Americans.
Of course they were. Because who else would they be?
Yep. So they were Hawaiian subjects because they were citizen citizen Wasn't a thing. Yeah, it was subjects of wiII with Americans who had moved and lived. Yeah, yeah, and live there and had rights to vote their boy. So the committee had just two tenants removed the monarchy entirely and annex Hawaii with the United States.
Yeah. Uh, how is that? What was that? Committee on Public safety?
Just the committee of Safety.
How is that making its I hate this.
That's it himself. They also called themselves in secret the Hawaiian League. I saw that a few times. Or I think actually, no, they expanded into more people before they started calling themselves the Hawaiian League. But I really out of all of the names I saw in all the links, I looked over to see what nationality they were. I'm not entirely sure there is even one Hawaiian native on any of these groups.
Don't sound like it.
Yeah, kind of kind of screwy.
Yeah. What little I've read on this made it seem very, very much like it was a bunch of Americans who just really wanted Hawaiian. Hawaii's resource is and trade.
Yeah, it was definitely a coup or a takeover like, Yeah. So on January 6th, the marshal of the kingdom, hot of Hawaii was tipped off to the intimate, imminent coup. They ended up issuing warrants for the Committee of Safety and tried to put them under arrest. And then they also announced that the kingdom would be going under martial law so that the monarchy could try and re stabilize power with the oncoming too. Yeah. So after fit a few failed negotiations, the Royal Household Guard ended up taking the queen and 496 men into the palace to protector from whatever could happen with the coup. Because they really know, they just kind of had a hint as to what was going on,
And while that was happening on January 17th a policeman was shot and wounded while trying to stop a wagon carrying Honolulu rifles. Ah oh, no. Carrying weapons to the Honolulu Rifles, which were a militia group, they were carrying weapons to the militia group, saying, the person guarding it got shot. Yeah, and I'm pretty sure the Honolulu Rifles were again in American or non native, being afraid of what the Queen might do. The Americans to the Americans in Hawaii, under martial law, the cowardly committee of safety called the good old US of A to send one of the very first steel warships to invade Hawaii. So, ah, 162 Marines aboard the USS Boston in Honolulu Harbor came ashore and they were armed to the teeth
in true marine fashion.
Yep, they supposedly were there under orders to keep relations neutral between the US and Hawaii. But that probably wouldn't have happened. The Marines didn't enter the palace grounds or take over any buildings, but they did end up just kind of being there, like they were just kind of enough of a presence in there. Yeah. Yeah, that the queen ended up making the announcement that to prevent fighting of any kind, it is impossible for the monarchy to protect itself and to avoid collision with the armed forces and perhaps loss of life. She surrendered to the U. S forces. Yeah. So the militia group, the Honolulu Rifles, along with the Committee for Safety, ended up taking over the palace after that announcement went out and they imprisoned her. And after imprisoning her, they formed a provisional government. Obviously, while they waited to index into the United
States Obviously all of all Americans who happen to live in Hawaii. Yeah. Yeah, that sounds about right. Par for the course. So good Earl U S of a.
Yeah. So during her imprisonment, she was asked to give a statement to commute some differences that were for other people in her monarchy. Obviously. And she ended up writing on January 24th of 18 98. For myself, I would have chosen death rather than to have signed this agreement. But it was represented to me that by signing this paper all the persons who had been arrested, all my people now in trouble by reason of their love and loyalty towards me would immediately be released. Think of my position Sick. A lone woman imprisoned scarcely knowing who was my friend or who listen to my words only to betray me without legal advice for friendly counsel in the stream of blood ready to flow unless it was stayed by my pen.
That's a lot of pressure to me on one person.
Yep. So at this point, they were just waiting for Hawaii to be annexed. And once she was freed after giving that statement, she decided to live in Brooklyn, Massachusetts, for a few years.
Yep. So she just after it
right down the street? Yeah, well, not from us now. But from where I used to be, I
mean, close enough.
I mean, yeah, I literally just walked around the block and I was in Brookline.
Yeah. So I guess after she was no longer the monarch and she was overthrown, she was like, Well, I want to get out of the I want to get out of my kingdom for a bit because I don't really want to watch it crumble like this.
So I decided to go and explore the world a little bit side Massachusetts place to be
all right. So
I went to Washington D. C. For a little bit after that and then returned to Hawaii.
So by the time she returned to Hawaii, what it had been annexed and none of her family retainers or many local natives attended the flag lowering ceremony where the Hawaiian Kingdom flag was removed in the American flag raised, that's so fucked up. Yeah, that's really kind of depressing
that I I purposely stayed away from this topic because I knew how upsetting it was because, like, I've, I haven't, like, studied like the end of the Y in monarchy or anything. But, like, I've read a couple of things about it and, like, I know a couple of people who had, like, written papers on it in grad school and stuff, and it's just so upsetting. Yeah, and all of you. And like everything, like, America doesn't colonize bullshit.
Yeah, we super colonized Hawaii. Yeah, like, slowly inserted ourselves into their government until we were their government.
Yeah, like it's ridiculous. Like, don't you have enough to deal with at home with your giant fricking country like and all of your different little states that are like, I don't want to follow this law. Therefore, I'm not making it mine. Like, don't you have enough shit to deal with? That doesn't mean you have to take over another poor little kingdom that sitting in the middle of the ocean like get out!
Well, I mean, we used it for sugar.
Yeah. One more saw and so annoyed by this one. Yeah, I got increasingly more annoyed as I read.
I know. I could tell like you were just, like, very I don't know, like, restless as you're doing your notes. And I was like, What? Lip over there.
Yeah, Well, I'll I'll deter this depressing fact for a little bit by having one last fun fact about Lily Luik Lani. She was also an esteemed musician and songwriter. And you all definitely no one of her songs. It I think you know it. Yeah, Okay. It is Aloha. Oi! The song that Noni Singh's toe Lilo Lilo and Stitch
I like that one That's like that that had happy feels that's ago it and that, uh
cool. So now we're onto your topic
I rate. So this week, I'm going to talk about the inspiration for the idea rod race in Alaska. Yeah, Well, um, you know the one with the sled dogs?
Of course. You know gov so many.
No, it's an inspiring story that's been immortalized in several movies. You may recognize some of them. Ahh. Balto.
And then there's that new Disney movie, Togo.
Yeah, I saw it on Busy. Plus, the other day.
Yeah, I we still need to watch that I don't want to get all were inspired more loosely in ball toes. Case by the real life race against time in 1925. So for a little geographical context, Nome, Alaska is approximately two degrees south of the Arctic Circle, So basically, it's, ah, cold as heck. Um, And it was the largest town in northern Alaska in 1925 with 455 Alaskan natives and 975 settlers of European descent. For over half the year from November to July, the port on the southern side of the Steward Peninsula in the Bering Sea was is icebound and completely inaccessible by any sort of ship. The only link to the rest of the world during the winter is the idea Rod Trail, which runs 938 miles from the port of Seward in the south and across several mountain ranges and the vast Alaska interior before it reaches gnome. At this time, the sled dog was the primary means of transportation and communication in sub Arctic communities around the world and, most importantly, the only way to get important supplies to Nome. Now, if you're starting to catch my drift, you may have realized exactly what I'm talking about. Uh, the 1925 serum run to Nome, which is also known as the Great Race of Mercy and the serum run.
I now know why you brought up vax again.
It's been on my mind for those not familiar. This was a five and 1/2 day transport of diphtheria antitoxin by dog sled relay across the U. S. Territory of Alaska by 20 mushers, which is what they call the sled dog. Like humans much, much yes, and about 150 sled dogs over 674 miles, saving gnome and the surrounding communities from an impending epidemic in the winter of 1924 to 25. The only doctor in Nome, a town of fewer than 2000 people and the surrounding communities, was Curtis Welch, who was supported by about four nurses. Which is not a lot. No. Several months earlier, Welch had placed an order for more diptheria anti toxin after he had discovered that the hospital's entire batch had expired. Who, unfortunately, the shipment didn't arrive before the port closed, and he wouldn't be able to order more until spring. So, of course, diphtheria shows up with a vengeance.
Yep, that's how they do.
Oh, yeah. In December of 1924 Welsh Welsh treated a few Children for what he first diagnosed as sore throats or tonsilitis. Um, as he initially dismissed it, diphtheria as a possibility, since it was, like, extremely contagious, and he would have expected to see ah, lot more symptoms and family members or other cases throughout the town. However, in the next few weeks, as the number of tonsillitis cases grew and four Children died, Welsh became increasingly concerned about diphtheria and with good reason. It waas good reason. Yeah, Um, by mid January of 1925 Welsh officially diagnosed the first Cape case of diphtheria in a three year old boy who died only two weeks after first becoming ill. The following day, when a seven year old girl presented the same telltale symptoms of diphtheria, Welsh attempted to administer some of the expired anti toxin to see if it would have any effect. But the girl still died a few hours later. So check the expiration dates on your medication folks. There's usually a good reason behind. It
is usually a good reason for everything that you find on your medication labels.
That is true, like instructions. Eso realizing that an epidemic was imminent The same evening, Welch called Mayor George May Nard to arrange an emergency town council meeting, which immediately implemented a quarantine the following day. Well, um sent radio telegrams to all other major towns in Alaska, alerting them of the public health risk. And then he also sent one to the U. S. Public Health Service in Washington, D. C. And asked for assistance. So, of course, despite the quarantine, there were over 20 confirmed cases of dip Lereah and at least 50 more at risk. By the end of January. Yeah, without anti toxin. It was expected that the surrounding regions population of around 10,000 people the morality rate would be close to 100%. That's crazy. It's insanely I Ah, for reference. The 1918 outbreak of Spanish flu had about a 20% morality mortality rate. Small packs has about a 30% and the bubonic plague only has about 50 0 wow, like generally speaking like it was different, like region to region, too. But like generally speaking, on average, like that's the mortality rate. When you catch those things, um, with medication and stuff it it's less. But for a populate like a surrounding area of that size to be that close to 100% is crazy. It's insane.
and terrifying. At the January 24th meeting of the Board of Health, Superintendent Mark Somers of the Hammond Consolidated Goldfields proposed a dog sled relay using too fast teams. One would start at Manana and another at Nome, and they would meet in No, no lotto, which is kind of in the middle. Obviously, the trip from gelato to Nome usually took about 30 days, although the record had um, was known to be as low as nine days like 30 is the usual. If you're going like, kind of chill nine, if you're really, really, really pushing it, that's a pretty big difference. Yeah, well, well calculated that the serum would only last about six days under the brutal conditions of the trail, meaning they would have to find a way to shave three full days off of that record. Who? Yeah, luckily, Summers employees. The Norwegian Norwegian Len Hard Seppala was chosen for the 630 mile round trip from Nome to New Lotto and back. He had previously made the rum run from Nome to New Lotto in a wrecking record breaking four days. Um so, like, I guess Down took less time than back. He had also won the All Alaska sweepstakes three times, which is a like dog sled race, and he had become something of a legend for his as athletic ability and his report with his Siberian husky team. His lead dog, the 12 year old Togo, was equally famous for his leadership, intelligence and his ability to sense danger. So Mayor Main Ari proposed flying the end to toxin by aircraft, which had had been done before, but only as far as about 260 miles. Remember, this is like 600 something, Um, and there have been several clack crash landings. Additionally, the only planes in Alaska that we're not we're not suited for the cold temperatures. And there were no experienced pilots available. So the Board of Health pretty quickly rejected this option and voted unanimously for the dog sled relay. So the U. S Public Health Service had located 1.1 million units of serum in West Coast hospitals, which could be shipped to Seattle and then transported to Alaska by the Alameda, which is like a big like a ship, Um, which would be the next ship going north. But it wouldn't arrive in Seattle toe, get the stuff until January 31st and then it would take another six or seven days to arrive in Seward. And as fate would have it on January 26 300,000 forgotten units of anti toxin were discovered in the Anchorage Railroad Hospital, where the supply was unwrapped in glass vials, padded quilts and finally put in a metallic cylinder weighing a little bit more than £20. While not sufficient to completely defeat the epidemic, the 3 300,000 units could hold it at bay until the larger shipment could be brought in. And it was already much, much closer. Yeah, yeah, Woo. So to make matters worse, the temperatures across the interior were at 20 year lows due to a high pressure system from the Arctic. And in Fairbanks the temperature was minus 50 degrees
Fahrenheit. It's very, very good. That
is very called. A second system was also bring the Panhandle of southeast Alaska with 25 mile per hour winds that swept snow into 10 foot drifts. So in response to these conditions, Governor Scott Bone or ordered Edward Walzer, the U. S. Post office inspector, to arrange a relay of the best drivers and dogs across the interior. The teams would then travel day and night until they handed off the package to Seppala at Milano, so hoping that more people and more dogs would make it faster than one person going the whole way. So Welter contacted Tom Person, who is an agent of the North Northern Commercial Company, which was held the contract to deliver mail between Fairbanks and
who you got it? I did. So many were names.
Kunal Ackley. You know Lockley Journal telephone and telegrams were then sent out to turn the driver's back to their assigned Roadhouses. Um, and the mail carriers held a revered position in the territory, and they were some of the best dog mushers in Alaska, so they were, like, really good at their jobs. The majority of the relay drivers across the interior were native after Baskins. I've I also saw it as a den, eh? And they were direct descendants of the original dog mushers. So a little fun fact for you? The word mush actually comes from the French term marsh, which means walk or move. And it's from one. Samuel de Champlain arranged tohave young French men who were known as ah Kuro, Debra or runners of the Woods. Um, he arranged to have them live with the natives and learned their language and customs to kind of help. The French colonizers essentially adapt to life in North America, and that's where they learned dog sledding. And now Marsh became mush in English after these 17 60 British conquest of Canada was completed. That's interesting. So I
always just assumed it was some Ah, you know, like native Alaskan word.
I mean, that would have been better thin the colonizers term. So back to the serum run. The first musher in the relay was Wild Bill Shannon, who has handed the package at the train station and Banana on January 27. That 9 p.m. Despite the temperature, Shannon left immediately with his team of 11 inexperienced dogs, led by his lead dog, Blackie. The names in this are not super creative. I'm just going to say that
now. Nothing like the Kentucky Derby.
No, nothing like that conducted every, um, and the temperature of course, began to drop. And the team was forced into, um, the colder ice of the river because the trail had been pretty much destroyed by horses. Despite jogging alongside the sled to keep warm, Shannon developed hypothermia. He managed to reach Minto at 3 a.m. And parts of his face were coming like completely black from frostbite, which is a really bad frostbite. The temperature was minus 62 degrees. So after warming the serum by the fire and resting for four hours, Shannon left three of his dogs and continued on with the remaining eight. Now, I don't want to get morbid. Yes,
But no, I don't. But I do feel the need to alert you and our listeners that numerous died. Dogs did die on this trip, which is part of the reason it's so heroic. I'm not going to give account of them all, since it's really sad. And I feel like that fat. But I just I feel like it needs to be acknowledged that it was extremely dangerous not only for the mushers, but also for the dogs who were doing like, the bulk of the work. So yeah, she and his team arrived in Tola Vonna in bad shape, Very bad shape at 11 a.m. And handed over the serum to Dan Green. After warming the serum in the Roadhouse Dean headed into the forest. The temperature rose as high is minus 30 which is such a heat wave. Oh,
yeah, like a regular summer up there.
Oh, yeah. Um, And according to at least one report, the owner of the rail of the Roadhouse at Manly Hot Springs, which is such a name Manley Hot Springs. Oh, yeah, Oh, yeah. Um, he the manager owner there had to pour water over greens, hands to get them off the sleds handlebars when he arrived at whore. God, yeah, like, just kind of, like, frozen onto the cart. Just they're now back in Nome. No new cases of diphtheria were diagnosed on genuine 28th but two new cases were diagnosed on January 29th. The quarantine had been obeyed, but lack of diagnostic tools and the contagiousness of the strain had pretty much rendered ineffective. The crisis had become headline news and newspapers being covered in San Francisco, Cleveland, Washington, D. C. And New York and had spread to radio sets, Um, which were just becoming common. And they began following the story pretty closely, which also made like it a bit more sensationalized because, you know, it was a big story about a little tiny place that was being covered by radio, which was like the new Big Thing. So January 30th brought the fifth death and the idea of using planes to fly the serum in resurfaced. But we're again resoundingly rejected by experienced pilots. The Navy and Governor bone in response bone decided to speed up the relay, an authorized additional drivers for CE Apollo's leg of the relay so they could travel without rest. CE Apollo is still scheduled to cover the most dangerous leg, which is the short cut across the northern sound. But the telephone and telegraph systems bypass the small villages that he was passing through, and there was no way to tell him like that he was supposed to wait at a town. So the plan pretty much relied on the driver from the north, catching Seppala on the trail. Like to be like, Hey, give it to me. So fun, Um, somewhere is the guy who ran. The Goldfield company arranged for drivers along the last leg, which included suppose colleague Gunner Cassin. So from mainly Hot Springs, Johnny Folger took the next 28 miles, meeting up with Sam Joseph at Fish Lake. Joseph then covered the 26 miles to to Nana with his team of seven Alaskan malamute, taking two hours and 45 minutes an average better than nine miles per hour, which are said dogs is pretty speedy. Yeah, so now it's January 29th and tightest. Nikolai took the serum the 34 miles from to Nana to Callens, where he met Dave Corning. Corning, averaging around eight miles per hour, covered the next 24 miles where he was met by Edgar Calland of the at the nine Mile cabin. Calland was a musher for the U. S mail service, and he traveled 30 miles to car crimes. Cocaine's where he then met Harry Pitkin Pitka, having seven dogs made his 30 mile run all at night to Ruby, with speeds averaging again over nine miles per hour. So like getting some good speed going on. So most of the mushers on this leg of the journey we're probably only spending three or so hours outdoors, which some people might not think is that bad, considering they're all bundled up, dressed appropriately for the weather and whatnot and, like, used to it. But frostbite. It's not a joke, and it can happen really fast. So remember the temperatures I mentioned before a low of minus 62 a high of minus 30?
Uh, I'll let you know that minus 65 is the minimum maintained for, like, cryo storage.
No fun. That's great. Yeah. Um, so very close. Yes. Um, so I found this really handy. Interactive like frostbite chart from public tableau. So at negative 45 degrees with a five mile per hour wind show, which makes the feel like temperature minus 63 frostbite can occurring as little as eight minutes. Yeah, and at night of 30 degrees. So, like the high temperature with a five mile per hour wind chill, it can still take as little as 12 minutes to get frostbite. So stay warm out there, this one to you guys on. And don't try Thio. Make any cross country sled races in negative temperatures unless your fully experienced at it and know exactly what you're doing.
Even then, these people did,
and quite a few of them got frostbite in various parts. So at, um, at Ruby, Bill McCarty and his lead dog prints took the serum the next 28 miles. But they were caught in an hour lark. Well, then you blew in an hour long, severe winter storm arriving at Whiskey Creek around 10 a.m. where the temperature was about minus 40 from Whiskey Creek. Edgar Noller cover the next 24 miles to Galena, where his brother, George, appears to have used the same sled team of seven mala mutes who were led by the eight year old Dixie to cover the next 18 miles to Bishop Mountain. Now, January 30th Charley Evans left Bishop Mountain around 5 a.m. with a reported temperature of minus 64 arrived at New Ludo New Lotto. Sorry, have golden you tell? Uh uh, no Lotto at 10 a.m. Having covered 30 miles in five hours running a nine dog team. So they're still, you know, doing pretty good from New Lotto. Tommy Patteson stopped at Cal tag and set the fastest speed record during the serum race, covering 36 miles in three and 1/2 hours at an average speed of more than 10 miles per hour. So he's really booking it. Yeah, well, they have good reason to be booking it in Cal tag Jack Nikolai covered the next leg to old woman's shelter. And that name is given as early. No explanation. Is just old woman shelter. Good. Yes. Yeah. Um, So he arrived at about 9 10 on Friday evening and had averaged about six miles per hour over 40 miles of very difficult trail Victor and a geek with an 11 dog team, took the serum the next 34 miles in six hours, arriving Sunday morning at, you know, likely the serum was now 207 miles from Nome. So it's over halfway there. By January 30th the number of cases and gnome had reached 27 the expired anti toxin was now completely depleted because the doctor, it continued giving it, hoping that, you know, like maybe there was some good in it, like you never know. Maybe help a little bit. Maybe something's not super sick. It would help. Yeah. Um, so 27 cases, Yikes! According to a reporter living in Nome, quote all hope is in the dogs and their heroic drivers. Gnome appears to be a deserted city because everyone was hiding inside so they wouldn't get diphtheria. Yeah. So Miles, gun Agamemnon covered the next 40 miles from mudhole. Lockley to shuck. Tool it. And seeing the signs with winter storm brewing, he decided not to take the shortcut across the dangerous ice of the sound. He arrived at three. Pm where he handed the serum off to Henry Ivan off who on Lee made it to about half a mile outside of the town where he had to settle a fight with his team. And while he was stopped, he saw CEPAL is Siberian Husky team approaching from the other direction because they were still thinking that they were going all the way to do lotto. And they didn't realize that because they had called in reinforcements. Essentially, it was already that far up, right? Um, he flagged him down, shouting the serum, the serum. I have it here and was able to pass a sermon. So luck held out. And he did, in fact, see him going the other direction, which, like, to me is absolutely bonkers that that it actually could have worked out like that because all it would have taken is like, really bad visibility, someone to be off by, like, a couple 100 yards and that kind of thing for like them to have completely passed.
Yeah, traveling out like 1/2 a degree angle after
Be anywhere near each other,
is absolutely insane. And like the talent of these mushers and stuff is just bonkers because, like it, it was them and the dogs that, like just knew this trail so well that like they were able to just stay on it even though they couldn't see anything that's like a really cool It's really impressive. So with the news of the worsening epidemic, CEPAL A decided to brave the storm and once again set out across the exposed open ice of the Norton Sound. When he reached Gallic after dark, the temperature was an estimated minus 30 but the wind chill with gale force winds made it more like negative 85 which is really freaking cold. So Togo led the team in a straight line through the dark, and they arrived at the rail house at Isaac's Point on the other side, at 8 p.m. In one day, they had traveled 84 miles, averaging eight miles per hour. The team then rested and departed again at 2 a.m. February 1st into the full power of the storm. The temperature dropped and the wind worsened while the team ran across the ice following the shoreline. Sometimes they were mere feet from open water where the ice had broken off, where it had not broken off. The day before they returned to short across the little McKinley Mountain, climbing 5000 feet. And after descending the mountain completely exhausted, they reached Dexter's Roadhouse at Sullivan at 3 p.m. The serum was now on Lee eighties, 78 miles from Nome. On February 1st, the number of cases and gnome had risen to 28. The serum and root was sufficient to treat about 30 people, so everyone waited with bated breath to see if the serum would arrive before too many more were sick to stop the spread. So Charlie Olsen and his team of seven Alaskan malamute, led by Jack, left Gull Oven at 3 15 So there was a 15 minute turnaround from when Seppala pulled up with the serum And when the next guy completely left. So like that's really speedy, too, because, like, I had to hit you all of his dogs up in like bundle up and get everything ready and stuff His dogs were inside like he was being responsible and then, like he sees the guy show up ago, hope time to go and just like 15 minutes. It was all it took and which I think really get, like you getting ready for work in the morning. Oh, shoot. I overslept a five second shower with the powerful blizzard raging and winds up to 80 miles per hour. Welsh order to stop to the relay until the storm had passed. He reasoned that a delay was better than risking losing all of the serum, so messages were left at Solomon and Point Safety before the lines went dead. But Olson and his team were hit by extreme gusts that drove them off the trail. He stopped and put blankets on each dog and got severe frostbite while doing so on his hands. Um, but despite this to dog suffered badly frozen groins. Which would explain why Bilbo got gets his weird weirdness in the winter because he's dangling so low to the ground because he's such a squat little puppy for Buddy, that cone of shame, it's his best friend in the winter, huh, s o. The wind show was minus 70 degrees, and after 25 miles in the storm, they arrived at Olson's Roadhouse in Bluff at about 7:30 p.m. Where they surprised Gunner Kasten, who thought that Olson probably had stopped to wait out the storm. CASS and waited until about 10 p.m. Hoping that the storm would break. But the conditions only worsened, and the teeth the snowdrifts would soon blocked the trail completely. So he departed straight into a headwind, which sucks. Yeah, So cast in. And his 13 dog team, led by Balto took the serum the last 53 miles to Nome. Kason traveled through the night through drifts and river overflow over the 600 foot top Cook mountain with chest deep snow drifts and glare Ice. He was unable to see the trail, and sometimes he couldn't even see the dogs that were hard is closest to the sled, like at all. Like he was just like on a sled in white, going. Hopefully this works out. Am I still be old? And I live for
me to tell myself.
Exactly. So he relied almost completely on Balto to guide the way and keep them on course. So a message was sent. He missed the village of Solomon and the message that had instructed him to wait there. Bye, like very little, because Balto had kept him on the main trail, which passed lightly to the south instead of like veering off to go to the town, you know, like you're supposed to be. Oh, good job. Yeah, right. So while they were crossing the bonanza flat, the sled was flipped by the wind and ejected the serum.
that's bad. Luckily, after searching the dark on hands and knees, CASS and found the package where? And he got severe frostbite on his hands because the only way he could find it was to take his gloves off so he could feel for it. Right? And, like again, less than eight minutes to get frostbite in this temperature probably took him longer than that to find it. So after retrieving the package and the lifesaving serum, he continued on arriving at point safety sometime after 2 a.m. On Sunday, which was ahead of schedule. So the musher, Ed Rone, was supposed to take the serum the final leg. But when Cassin arrived there, he was still asleep and all the lights were out. Oh, no. So Cassin. Because he had he had thought Castle would be waiting out the worst of the blizzard. Which he didn't. He just went for it. Well, he started to. And then when this is just getting worse. I'm going anyway. Sarone was still asleep, so Cassin decided that the weather had started to improve and it would take time to get Rohan's team together. And Balto and all his dogs were doing well. So he was like, I'm just gonna keep going. What does
improve me in these situations?
Presumably. Better visibility, maybe less. Wind show. I don't know. I
don't have much of an improvement.
I guess. What? It's absolutely awful. You take what you can get on this note. There are also, like, a lot of accusations down the road that CASS and didn't stop the way grown because he wanted the glory for himself, which I think of a little unfair. Who knows? I'm not alive to ask him. So he's not alive to ask me. I'm alive. He's well, I'm not Whoa, slow down. He dead can't ask. Moving on. So CASS impressed on the remaining 25 miles to Nome, reaching front street at 5:30 a.m. For a total time of seven and 1/2 hours. Not a single vial of the diphtheria antitoxin had been broken and it was thought and ready to be administered by noon. So yeah, he made it. He made it boob
and all the others. And the reason I went through that long list of all of the different mushers is that a vast majority of them were the Native Alaskans. And it was hard enough to get all of their names and everything together, let alone any information on them. Because Seppala and CASS in the native group that participated have been, like, largely overlooked, um, at least like in, like, the mainstream medium stuff like that, because, like Cassin, we'll talk about later broadcast in a separate, like went on tour and stuff and the right the native Alaskans like this is what we do. This is our job like it's not like I'm glad we were able to do our job and like, left it that where is, like Seppala and casting were like, Look at Tesco, where we're superheroes. So So I wanted to make sure that they were mentioned because I felt that was important. Yet so altogether, the team's covered 674 miles in 127 and 1/2 hours, which was considered a world record and it was done in extreme sub zero temperatures in near blizzard conditions and hurricane force winds. So, like, wow. Yeah, By February 3rd, the original 300,000 units had proved to be still effective, and the epidemic was under control. A six death was widely reported as a new outbreak of the disease, but it was really likely unrelated, especially because, like no one else got it from their out. So, like it, it probably it most likely wasn't diphtheria because it wouldn't have just been a contained incident like that. The serum batch from Seattle arrived on board the Admiral Watson on February 7th, a seeming to pressure Governor Bone authorized half of it to be delivered by plane. And on February 8th, the first half of the second shipment began its trip by dog sled. While the plane failed to start when a broken radiator shudder caused the engine to overheat. Oh no. So the plane failed the next day as well, and the mission was scrapped. So it's really a good thing they didn't depend on that plane in the first place. Otherwise it never would have gotten there. So the second relay included most of the same drivers, and they also again faced harsh conditions because it was only like a week later. But the serum arrived in Nome on February 15th this time at a little bit more of a leisurely pace. You know, accounting better for the conditions in that kind of thing. That's
good for the dogs.
Yeah, right. So the death toll from the diphtheria in Nome is officially listed as either 56 or seven. But Welsh later estimated that there were probably at least 100 additional cases among quote the Eskimo camps outside the city. The natives have a habit of burying their Children without reporting the death, so they were likely more instances of it right that would not accounted for. 43 new cases were diagnosed in 1926 but they were easily managed with a fresh supply of serum. So all participants in the dog sleds received letters of recommendation from President Calvin Coolidge, and the Senate stopped work to recognize the event. Each musher during the first really received a gold medal from the H. K. Mulford Company. The mayor of Los Angeles presented a bone shaped key to the city to Balto in front of City Hall and silent film actress Mary Pickford put a wreath around his neck. Poems and letters from Children poured in and spontaneous fundraising campaign spread up around the country. Gunner Cassin and his team became celebrities, and they toward the West Coast from February 1925 to February 1926. And they even start in a 30 minute film entitled Ball Toes. Race to Nome. A statue of Balto by the sculptor Fredrick Roth was unveiled in New York City's Central Park during a visit on December 15th 1925. When Kason wanted to return to Alaska, Baltar and the other dogs were sold to the highest bidder by the company that had sponsored his tour, and they became part of like a sideshow and lived in a really crappy conditions own until they were rest, until they were rescued by George Kimball, who actually organized a fundraising campaign by Children in Cleveland, Ohio, to bring the, um, bring the dog sled team to Ohio, where they could live in luxury. Yeah, right, Um, so on March 19th Nations 17 the dogs received a hero's welcome of the as they arrived at their permanent home at the Cleveland Zoo. So because of his age, Balto like, died several years later because he was 14 which for a dog that had worked hard his whole life. That's pretty good. He was then stuffed and mounted in, placed on display in the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. Oh, in 1998 the Alaskan Alaska legislator past the H J R 62 which is the Bring Back Balto resolution. The Cleveland Museum of Natural History declined to return Balto, however, in October, Balta left her a five month stay at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art, which drew record crowds. He was also part of another exhibit at the Anchorage Museum of History of and Art in 2017 so his stuffed body is still floating around museums. You can probably go see in Cleveland if you want to. Oh, no. So despite all of the attention and prays that was lavished on Casting and Balto, many considered Seppala and Togo to be the true heroes of the run, as they had covered the longest and most hazardous leg of the journey. They had made a round trip of 261 miles from Nome to Shaktoolik and back to Golovin, and had delivered the serum a total of 91 miles, which was almost double the distance covered by any other team. After castles return, he was accused of being a glory hog and supple. It became upset when the media attributed Doc Togo's achievements to Balto and he stated, Quote, it was almost more than I could bear when the newspaper dog Balto received a statue for his glorious achievements. So he was a little better. In October 1926 CEPAL, it took Togo and his team on a tour from Seattle to California and then across the Midwest, New England, and he consistently drew some pretty big crowds. They were featured at Madison Square Garden in New York City for 10 days, and Togo received a gold medal from Rolled Amundsen, who was the man who led the first expedition to the South Pole in 1911. So okay, good explorer, um, in New England, Cepal ist team of Siberian huskies ran in many races and easily defeated the local Chin IX, which were sled dogs that were bred in New Hampshire, just purely Ford pulling sleds on and like were pretty well believed to be like the best lead dogs. And then his team of Huskies were just like, ah, by, um, several Isolde, most of his team to a candle in Poland, Spring main, which I did not know. And that's why when I was sitting here doing notes, all of us, and I went, Oh whoa! And then just got really quiet because I was like, Oh, gotta write this down several It continued to visit toe Togo until he was until he passed on December 5th of 1929 which I think he was, like, 18 or something like that was an old because he was 12 when he made that run.
That's very old.
Yes, yeah, Togo had been like his lead sled dog for, like, eight or so years, I think, which is like, a very long time. That's crazy. Yeah, like Tokyo is a really cool dog. And I feel really bad that he kind of has been overlooked so much. I really want to watch that Togo movie. We will, Yes, I get it. So after his death, Seppala had Togo preserved a mounted and to this seems like a thing. And today the dog is on display in a glass case at the Idea Rod Museum in Wasilla. Oh, Alaska. So in a side note of good news, Togo was later recognized by Time magazine in 2011 as the most heroic animal of all time, so he eventually got his due. Even a Seppala wasn't alive to see it. Yeah, yeah, I feel better about that. So today the I did A Rod Trail Sled Dog Race is an annual long distance sled dog run in early March from Anchorage to Nome, and it serves to commemorate the part, the trail and his dog sleds played in the development of Alaska. The Iditarod is regarded as a symbolic link to the early history of the state and is connected to many traditions Commemorating the legacy of dog mushing. Additionally, with the advent of the diphtheria vaccine, the disease has almost completely been eradicated from the U. S. Going from to 206,000 recorded cases in 1921 to 2 total cases reported between 2004 and 2017. Nice. Yeah, let's keep it that way. Shall we please vaccinate Your Children cannot say it enough.
Okay, Cool. So time for our call to action. You can find us on Facebook and Twitter at Half Wit history, your visitor webs website at half wit. Dash history dot com and you can find our ko Phi coffee. Whatever the hell you want to go.
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at Keough Dash f i dot com forward slash half with history. Lovely. Oh, and you can send us an email at Half Wit pod at gmail dot com.
We would really love to hear from you guys. Topic suggestions, recommendations, comments. Nice critique. I'm open to suggestions.
We know there's gonna be some just because we're getting used to this new audio equipment. There's a few times during this episode where
I got too close to my mike
finally got close, I turn down the volume. She saw me turn down the volume. So far, I like What
are you doing? I'm I'm regulating. My immediate response is Oh, no, I need to get fired their away because he's having to turn it down. No, Carly. Just a But no,
they. But I fixed it. Yeah,
it's a different it's We're still getting used to it. Yeah, we'd love absolutely love to hear from you guys. Um And yet half what history at Gmail.
Half wit pod at Gmail groups
half a pot at gmail dot com Clearly, I am not the one who does this call to action ever. So it's okay.
I think we should also give a shadow to our friend Ashley.
Did all of the looking sifting through the Internet for topics for us and created a big spreadsheet of possible topics that are interesting instead of us having to look at just literal Just had a love of yeah of, you know, sports awards and stuff like that. It's huh? It's like looking through that So we greatly appreciate it. Ashley.
Yes, I am super appreciative. It's great if we ever make money off this. Maybe we'll pay you
now. It's not hard commit.
I said maybe
you and thank you to the fishermen for the use of her theme song. Another day you can find his soundcloud in our show notes.
You should give him a listen. Yeah, Good. Are we onto fun facts now? Yes,
we are. Underfund fast.
Oh, No. Where's my right? Paige? I only have one. You go first.
January 30th of 1982. Richards. Wow. I don't know what to say. That
Corrente writes the first PC virus code, which is 400 lines long and disguised as an apple boot program called Elk cloner. First, I thought that Apple Systems didn't get viruses, so it was kind of like not for a long time, like that was that was why people bought Macintosh and stuff like that because it just didn't they They were safe from that stuff, and there weren't that many viruses associated with apple products. And I assumed that that was because they were all developed for just Windows machines. So that was kind of jarring for me to read that the first virus was just an apple product.
That's interesting. Yeah, you'll figure,
considering how little viruses they had for such a long time. Wow. Also, it was called El Cloner. So any ah, magic, the gathering people out there looks like Coco was wreaking havoc since 1980 to
your charity show,
turning your PC ease into 33 Elks.
I hate everything Anyway, him my fun fact is, from January 28th 13 93 when Charles the Six of France is nearly killed when several dancers, costumes catch fire during a masquerade
ball. Oh, God.
Yep. What sees? I know nothing about whether or not the dancers were okay, but considering was 13 93. I'm going to go with No, definitely not Perhaps not. Know
what a scene?
Yeah. Just burning ball instead of burning man is burning ball. Uh huh. I'm so funny.
Anyways, it's been our show. Uh, always I've been halfway and I'm your historian and we wait.