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Guide to the Greater Anchorage, Inc. Fur Rendezvous records
1938-2005

 Collection number: HMC-0121.
Creator: Greater Anchorage, Inc.
Title: Greater Anchorage, Inc. Fur Rendezvous records.
Dates: 1938-2005.
Volume of collection: 28 cubic feet.
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Collection summary: Records of the organization responsible for the annual Fur Rendezvous festival in Anchorage.

Organizational history:
The first annual "Winter Sports Carnival" was held in Anchorage, Alaska over February 15-17, 1935.  In 1937, the name of the festival was changed to "Winter Sports Tournament and Fur Rendezvous,” in part after Alaska’s fur- trading heritage.  The central events included a fur auction, skiing, basketball, and hockey. The Fur Rendezvous was suspended in 1942 for the duration of World War II and resumed again in 1946. The event was managed at different times by civic groups, fraternal and service organizations, special committees, and the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. The Fur Rendezvous was taken over in 1956 by Greater Anchorage, Inc., a non-profit civic organization, and was gradually expanded into a ten-day event in late February and early March of each year. Fur Rendezvous events include the World Championship Sled Dog Race (begun in 1946), the Women's World Championship Sled Dog Race (begun in 1953), a fur auction, several balls including the Miner’s and Trapper’s Ball, sports such as men’s snowshoe softball, parades, contests such as the World Championship Dog Weight Pull (begun in 1967), assorted races including Grand Prix auto race, numerous exhibits, and other contests and activities.  The festival is known today as the Fur Rondy Festival.

Collection description:
The collection consists of papers and photographs created and kept by Greater Anchorage, Inc. that document the organization’s involvement with the annual Fur Rendezvous festival from 1938-2005.  These materials include festival advertisements, board meeting minutes and reports, brochures, concession and exhibit information, correspondence, event schedules, financial papers, mailing lists, membership records, newspaper clippings, programs, permits, press releases, and other papers relating to various festival events.  There is also an extensive set of photographs, negatives, contact prints, and proofs taken by photographer Ward W. Wells that document the events and activities of the Fur Rendezvous from 1952-1982. Other items of note include a set of booster buttons from 1974-1984; an incomplete set of collector buttons from 1965-1984; a set of annual event catalogs from 1951-1981 (1968 missing); a collectors album of the signatures of prominent attendees, and film such as promotional videos and footage of the festival from news organizations, among many other items.

Arrangement: The collection is divided into two parts: Part I. Materials acquired before 1999 and Part II. Materials acquired after 1999.

Digitized copies: Digital copies of collection material not available online. For information about obtaining digital copies, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Rights note: Archives does not own copyright to this collection.

Preferred citation: Greater Anchorage Inc. Fur Rendezvous records, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Related materials: Fur Rendezvous Annual 1953/Alaska State Housing booklet, EPH-0082-AHS.

Acquisition note: The collection was placed on deposit in the Archives in 1980 by Greater Anchorage Inc. Additional material was deposited in 1981-2006 and continues to be submitted periodically.  

Processing information: Part I of the collection was arranged and described by Archives staff prior to 1999.  Megan K. Friedel revised and updated this description in 2010.  Part II was re-boxed and foldered by Jeffrey Sinnott between 1999-2006 and was arranged and described by Lesley Ann Wallace and Megan K. Friedel in 2010.

Container list:

PART I. MATERIALS ACQUIRED BEFORE 1999. 14.2 cubic feet.

Part I.  Series 1.  Historical files, 1938-1978. 10.2 cubic feet.
Arranged chronologically by year and then alphabetically by subject.
This series includes advertisements, board meeting minutes and reports, brochures, concession and exhibit information, correspondence, event schedules, financial papers, mailing lists, membership records, newspaper clippings, programs, permits, press releases, and other papers relating to various festival events.


Box/Folder

Description

Dates

Box 1

Historical files.  Includes materials on the history of Greater Anchorage, Inc. and Kay Kennedy promotional information (1938-1939).

1938-1947, 1956-1966

Box 2

Historical files.  Includes ledgers and account books.

1967-1968

Box 3

Historical files.

1968-1969

Box 4

Historical files.

1969-1971

Box 5

Historical files.  Includes by-law revisions.

1971-1972

Box 6

Historical files.

1972

Box 7

Historical files.  Includes annuals.

1972-1973

Box 8

Historical files.

1973-1974

Box 9

Historical files.

1974-1976

Box 10

Historical files.  Includes by-laws and organization manual.

1976-1978, undated

Box 11

Minutes of meetings.

1982-1983

Part I.  Series 2.  Ward W. Wells photographs, 1950-1982. 2 cubic feet.
The negatives, contact prints, and proofs in this series are arranged chronologically by year and then by negative number.  These numbers were assigned to the images by either by Ward W. Wells or the archivist who originally processed this collection.  The negatives are numbered as follows:
 0000 #0-0 = Numbered by Ward W. Wells on negative.
0000 #(0-0) = Numbered by processor on negative sleeve.
0000 = 4 x 5 negatives.
0000-120 or 0000-135 = Added by processor to indicate negative size.
Folder titles are taken from the photographer’s original negative envelopes.  Photocopies of these envelopes are included in many folders.


Box/Folder

Description

Dates

12/1

Unidentified negatives

undated

12/2

Negatives 1084 #1-5: Moose Gooser Kiwanis

undated

12/3

Negatives 1146 #1, 2: Fur Rendezvous Photo Contest sponsored by the Anchorage Photo Guild

1950

12/4 – 12/5

Negatives 1200 #9-1: Raising banner
Negatives 1203 #1, 2: Square dancers

1951

12/6 – 12/13

Negatives 1250 #1-16: Moose Gooser
Negatives 1250 #17-20: Folk dance
Negatives 1250 #21: Dog musher
Negatives 1250 #22, 23: Sons of Norway cake presentation
Negatives 1250 #24-33: Queen coronation
Negatives 1250 #34, 35: Hoosier Hot Shots: Clowns and police in front of 4th Avenue Theater
Negatives 1250 #36, 37: Blanket toss
Negatives 1250 #38-44B: Style show at Elks Hall

1952

12/14

Negatives 1494 #1-6: Dog teams

1954

12/15 – 12/17

Negatives 1712 #(1-3): Floats in parade
Negatives 1712 #(4, 5): Fur auction
Negatives 1712-120 #(3-8), (10-12): Dog sled races and fur auction
Negatives 1712-120 #(10-12): Dog sled races and fur auction

1956

12/18 -12/25

Negatives 1770 #1-6: Native carver
Negatives 1770 #(7-9): Wrestlers
Negatives 1770 #(10-17): Fur fashion show
Negatives 1770 #(18-28) Coronation Ball
Negatives 1770 #(29, 30): Various ceremonies
Negatives 1770-120 #3-5: Mushers
Negatives 1770-120 #(6-12): Blanket toss
Negatives 1770-120 #(13-19): Blanket toss

1957

12/26 – 12/35

Negatives 1862 #(1-7): Wrestling - Vic Christy and Mr. Moto
Negatives 1863 #(1-12): Parade
Negatives 1863-120 #(1-5): Parade
Negatives 1864 #(1-4): [1] Peggy Postgate, [2] Betty Watson, [3] Cindy Terby, [4] Unidentified person
Negatives 1864 #(1-10): Rondy Queen Jane DeLorenzo
Negatives 1864-120 #(1, 2): Native parkas and blanket toss
Negatives 1864-120 #(3, 4): Curling
Negatives 1864-120 #(5-21): Curling
Negatives 1881 #(1-13): Dog sled races
Negatives 1881-120 #(1-41): Dog sled races

1958

12/36 – 12/52

Negatives 2055-120 #1-3: Queen candidates before coronation
Negatives 2055-120 #4-17: Eskimo pageant
Negatives 2055-120 #18-28: Women's dog sled races
Negatives 2055-120 #29-48: Queen coronation
Negatives 2055-120 #49-60: Parade
Negatives 2055-120 #63-66/69: Parade
Negatives 2055-120 #70-72: Fur auction
Negatives 2055-120 #75-89: Fur auction
Negatives 2055-120 #90-95: Sled dog weight-pulling contest (missing negative 2055-120 #91)
Negatives 2055-120 #96-109: Dog racing championships
Negatives 2055-120 #112-119: Dog racing championships
Negatives 2055-120 #122-125: Dog racing championships
Negatives 2055-120 #126-130: Eskimo blanket toss
Negatives 2055-120 #131-220: Miner’s & Trapper’s Ball and beard contest
Negatives 2055 #221-234: Queen coronation
Negatives 2055-120 #(1-26): Wrestling/Zsabo, Lord Blears, Mr. Moto, Billy Varga
Negatives 2055-135 #(1-14): Eskimo blanket toss
Negatives 2055-135 #(1-16): Pancake feed/Aunt Jemima
Negatives 2055-135 #(1-90): Eskimo pageant
Negatives 2055-135 #(1-3) Merry-Go-Around
Negatives 2055 MISC #(1-13): Misc. shots, unidentified negatives

1959

12/53 – 12/60

Negatives 3063-120 #1-20: Junior mushers
Negatives 3063-120 #21-32: Parade
Negatives 3063-2¼x3½ #33-44: Parade
Negatives 3063-120 #45: Chuck wagon
Negatives 3063-120 #46-51: Circus
Negatives 3063-120 #52, 53: Junior dog races
Negatives 3063-120 #54-89: Dog races
Negatives 3063-2¼x3½ #90-96: Dog races

1960

12/61 – 12/63

Negatives 3295-120 #1-4 Miss Alaska - Jean Ann Holm, Fairbanks
Negatives 3295-120 #(5-25) Miss Alaska - Jean Ann Holm, Fairbanks
Negatives 3295-120 #(26-30) Mike Watkins, 12, San Jose, CA, Newspaper Carrier - King for a Day

1961

Box 13

Contact prints of negatives 1084 #1-5 through 3295-120 #26-30

1950-1961

14/1 – 14/26

Negatives 3415A #1-16: Dr. Lombard
Negatives 3415A-120 #17-22: Dr. Lombard
Negatives 3415A-120 #23-29: General Foods Corp. - Gravy Train Publicity
Negatives 3415A-120 #30-61: Dogs
Negatives 3415A-120 #62-120: Go-Kart Races
Negatives 3415A-120 #121-173: Stock Car Races
Negatives 3415A-120 #174-180: Women's Snowshoe Race
Negatives 3415A-120 #181-216: Junior Dog Sled Races
Negatives 3415A #217-223: Fourth Avenue Dog Races
Negatives 3415A-120 #224-242: Fourth Avenue Dog Races
Negatives 3415A-120 #244-287: Fourth Avenue Dog Races
Negatives 3415B-120 #288-293: Art Show
Negatives 3415B-120 #295-300: Photo Show
Negatives 3415B-2¼x3½ #301-315: Photo Show
Negatives 3415B-120 #316-332: Fur Auction
Negatives 3415B-120 #333-344, 352, 353: Rondy Parade
Negatives 3415B-2¼x3½ #345-351: Rondy Parade
Negatives 3415B-120 #354-371: Blanket Toss
Negatives 3415B #372: Announcers (individual/groups)
Negatives 3415B-120 #373-425: Individuals/groups (#376, 379, 390-391 depict "Mr. Fur Face, Muktuk Marston”)
Negatives 3415B-120 #426-469: Miscellaneous Crowds and Events
Negatives 3415B-2¼x3½ #470-473: Miscellaneous Individuals
Negatives 3415B-120 #475-480, 484-489: Chilkat Dancers
Negatives 3415B-120 #490-493: Dog Sled Races
Negatives 3415C-135 #(0-35)(1): Chilkat Dancers
Negatives 3415C-135 #(1-37)(2): Chilkat Dancers
Negatives 3415C-135 #(8-37)(3): Chilkat Dancers

1962

14/27 – 14/29

Negatives 4015 #1-10: Rondy Old Time Costumes
Negatives 4015-120 #(1-9): Chilkat Dancers
Negatives 4015-120 #(1-13): Eskimos - St. Lawrence Island

1963

14/30 – 14/45

Negatives 4140-120 #1-103: Lassie and Sky King
Negatives 4140-120 #104-105: Lassie and Farrel Ingham Children
Negatives 4170-120 #1-15: Miss Alaska Pageant/Talent
Negatives 4170 #16: Miss Alaska Pageant/Frank Feeman
Negatives 4170-120 #17-30: Miss Alaska Pageant/Coronation of Karol Homman
Negatives 4170 #31-55: Miss Alaska Pageant/Karol Homman, Winner
Negatives 4171-120 #1: Miss Anchorage Pageant/ Runner-Ups
Negatives 4171-120 #2-14: Miss Anchorage Pageant/ Talent
Negatives 4171-12 0 #15-17: Miss Anchorage Pageant/Everybody Can't Be a Winner
Negatives 4171-120 #18: Frank Feeman
Negatives 4171 #19, 20: Introduction of Candidates
Negatives 4171-120 #21-23: Pageant - Stage Action
Negatives 4171-120 #24-26: Pageant - Paul Lien
Negatives 4171-120 #27-28: Pageant - Ballgowns
Negatives 4171 #29-31: Pageant - Susan Koslosky
Negatives 4171-120 #32-44: Pageant (Miss Anchorage) - Karol Homman

1964

14/46 – 14/49

Negatives 4256-120 #1-46: Miss Anchorage Contest
Negatives 4256-120 #47-51: Rondy Dog Races
Negatives 4256-120 #52-58: Rondy Parade
Negatives 4256-135 #(1-68): Rondy -- Miss Anchorage

1965

14/50

Negative 7288 #1: GAI/Miss Alaska Contestants

1967

14/51

Negatives 4975-120 #1-10: Rondy - Old-Time Household Goods at Alaska Mutual Savings; Old Schoolroom at National Bank of Alaska

1972

14/52 – 14/53

Negatives (1980) #(1-11): Mr. and Mrs. Gene Smith - King and Queen Regents 
Negatives (1980) #(1-20) Publicity Portraits - Casey Clure 

1980

14/54 – 14/56

Negatives (1981) #(1-26): Debra Steckel, Rondy Queen
Negatives (1981) #(1-10): Mr. and Mrs. Elwood Nurse, King and Queen Regents
Negatives (1981) #(1-12): Gregory Bill - Publicity Portraits

1981

14/57

Negatives (1982) #(1-6): Mr. and Mrs. John Schandelmeier, Fur Rondy King & Queen – Publicity Portraits

1982

Box 15

Prints, contact prints, and proofs of negatives 3415A through 4975-120, (1980) through (1982), and unidentified.

1965-1982

Part I.  Series 3. Artifacts, 1953-1985. 2 cubic feet.


Box

Description

Dates

Box 16

Booster buttons, annuals, and programs.

1953-1985

Box 17

Commemorative ceramic plates and collector’s albums containing commemorative autographed envelopes with signatures of public figures associated with the festival.

1970-1984

 

PART II. MATERIALS ACQUIRED AFTER 1999. 13.8 cubic feet.
The materials in these boxes are arranged in the original order in which they arrived at the Archives.

Box

Description

Dates

Box 18

Floor supervisor’s hat for Monte Carlo Night

1985

Box 19

Directors’ manuals of rules and regulations for exhibits, festival president resumes, and photographs of sporting events, including basketball, Grand Prix auto race auto race, dog sled races and social events such as awards banquets, dances, parades, and dinners.

1969, 1979-1985

Box 20

Annual board meeting notes, executive committee notes, drafts for director’s manual, action plans for events and exhibits, 1983 fully published director’s manual, and list of past presidents’ contact information.

1979-1992

Box 21

Budget notes, insurance papers, 1998 fireworks contract dispute papers, membership papers, event information including Miner’s and Trapper’s Ball and Monte Carlo Night, warehouse use plans, announcements, and photos of pageant winners and Fur Rendezvous Queens

1973-1991

Box 22

Publications (festival programs, magazines, premium books, and pamphlets) and photographs of contestants, kings and queens, events, and exhibits.

1970-1990

Box 23

Ward W. Wells color slides: A-G.  Arranged alphabetically by festival subject.

1985-1991

Box 24

Ward W. Wells color slides: G-P.  Arranged alphabetically by festival subject.

1985-1991

Box 25

Ward W. Wells color slides: P-S.  Arranged alphabetically by festival subject.

1985-1991

Box 26

Ward W. Wells color slides: S-W.  Arranged alphabetically by festival subject.

1985-1991

Box 27

President’s correspondence, board meeting notes (1994), economic impact study (1989), legal and financial papers, event information, and advertisements.

1989-1994

Box 28

Film footage from news organizations, promotional videos, Chamber of Commerce membership directories, oversized photos of the Grand Prix auto race, and one handler banner for dog sledding.

1991-2005

Box 29

Photographs of individuals, arranged alphabetically by name, and festival events.

1956-1989

Box 30

Official events guides, Who’s Who Festival and Events membership directory (50th edition), collector’s program (1985), unidentified events photographs, and artifacts, including commemorative plate (1995), commemoratives pins, and piece of walrus tusk.

1982-2004

Box 31
(oversize)

Income account book for 1971-1971, Ward W. Wells photographs of festival activities (1959 and undated), cassette tape of 12/16/1975 speech by Bob Sumbardo at the Presidents Luncheon at the Anchorage Westward Hotel, 1967 festival program, newspaper clippings, and binder of photocopies made in 1981 of 1937 Winter Sports Tournament and Fur Rendezvous material

1959-1981