Sunday, May 29, 2011

Walter Harper

Yesterday's Person-of-Mystery was Walter Harper.  Famous for being the first man to make it to the top of Mt. McKinley, the highest mountain in North America at 20,327 feet.

(Walter Harper)

Harper was an Alaskan native, and the son of mixed parentage (his mother, Jennie, was an Athabascan Indian) who accompanied Hudson Stuck, Harry Karstens, and Robert Tatum, but it was Harper who reached the summit a day earlier than the rest of the party on June 7, 1913.  He was only 21 at the time.

Tragically, he died when the SS Princess Sophia went down on October 25, 1918.

(Mt. McKinley)

Curiously enough, Hudson Stuck, who co-led the expedition to the Mt. McKinley was a British immigrant, turned Texas cowboy and one-time school teacher in none other than San Angelo, Texas.

(Hudson Stuck)

Strange how so much seems to lead back to San Angelo!


RTD said...

The worst part of the tragedy was that there was a lot of other ships and help to save the people onboard. But the captain was worried about the poor weather and didn't start any rescue attempts. But the next day the weather turned worse and turn the bow into the waves and the ship sunk quite rapidly.

Judi said...

What a sad tale. Thanks for the lesson Nate. Whenever I have tried to postdate a post & have it pop up on a future day, the date always says the date I wrote it, not the date it appeared. I see you have figured out a solution.
Glad you're backpacking in CA & not Wy. A skiff of wet snow here this AM.