Alaska has many resources that are valuable. Our vast state has something for everyone. Resources of Alaska include natural resources like big game, fish, and berries. Precious ores and minerals are also found in Alaska; our ground contains oil and gold. The people of Alaska value different resources and use them in many ways. Perhaps one of the most important resources of Alaska is the people.
The Sourdough Expedition, 1910, tells stories of climbing expeditions in Alaska. Climbing Mt. McKinley would be a daunting and dangerous task with a team of climbers, but could you imagine trekking up over 20,000feet by yourself? The risky climb would be nearly impossible for most without a team of experienced people.
Fishing boats are a popular livelihood in Alaska as are crab boats. In Working on the Edge the crew of the crab boat Elusive receives a mayday call from the City of Seattle, another ship. The crew from the Elusive and the crew from the Cougar are able to help the stranded crew and ensure their safety. The waters of Alaska can be rough and choppy. Having a competent crew can mean the difference between life and death for men and women who make a living at sea.
The poem, The Moose Kill, speaks of the September moose hunt as a family affair. The children are involved in hunting and spotting the animal. The father’s successful hunt is processed into meat for the family. The family of hunters returns happily to the wife and mother, waiting at home to hear the stories while wrapping meat. This story again illustrates the importance of people. We learn from each other as we share experiences and demonstrate skills.
The people of Alaska collectively have a lot of varied knowledge that makes them a resource. The compassion and willingness to help is another characteristic that I have experienced from Alaskans. I have never seen strangers embody the idea of community like the people of Alaska do. I believe people are one of Alaska’s most precious resources.
This picture was taken after the 1964 earthquake. The people of Alaska pulled together after this great tragedy to rebuild cities and pick up pieces of their lives. The strength of our people as a resource was demonstrated following the destructive quake.