Empire's Edge

American Society in Nome, Alaska 1898-1934

By Jones, Preston

6 x 9, 168 pages, black and white illustrations, maps, bibliography, index

Format: Paper 

Price: $19.95

Published: 2007

In 1898, Nome, Alaska, burst into the American consciousness when one of the largest gold strikes in the world occurred on its shores. Over the next ten years, Nome's population exploded as both men and women came north to seek their fortunes. Closer to Siberia than to New York, Nome's citizens created their own version of small-town America on the northern frontier. Less than 150 miles from the Arctic Circle, they weathered the Great War and the diphtheria epidemic of 1925 as well as floods, fires, and the Great Depression. They enlivened the Alaska winters with pastimes such as high-school basketball and social clubs. Empire's Edge is the story of how ordinary Americans made a life on the edge of a continent, a life both ordinary and extraordinary.

Preston Jones has been a U.S. Canada Fulbright Scholar and a fellow of the Pew Program in Religion and American History. He publishes in both scholarly journals and national newspapers such as the San Francisco Chronicle and the National Post (Toronto). He completed his doctorate at the University of Ottawa in Canada in 1999. He teaches history at John Brown University in Arkansas.


"Indeed, Empire's Edge does provide readers with topical insights that reveal Nome's early 20th century American-ness and makes an important contribution to the growing field of Alaskan history."
Katherine Johnson Ringsmuth, University of Alaska Anchorage