Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Twice Told Tuesday - She Stuck In The Mud

Twice Told Tuesday features a photography related article reprinted from
my collection of old photography books, magazines, and newspapers.

Shades of HBO's Deadwood was the real life experience of a chechako at the hands of a kodak fiend. Has anything really changed?

Nome and Seward Peninsula
History, Description, Biographies and Stories

IN 1900 there were places in the main street of Nome where the mud and muck were of treacherous and uncertain depth, and it required courage and a pair of stout legs to navigate the primitive thoroughfare.

A feminine chechako attempted to cross the street, and got into a bad place. Her effort to get out increased the difficulty and added to her perplexity. No one happened at the moment to be near at hand to help the poor woman out.

A busy day - Front Street - Nome 1900

The first man to observe her predicament was a kodak fiend. The woman was standing thigh deep in the tundra mire, her skirts gathered around her waists, and her agony was finding vent in a flood of tears.

"Just wait a moment, madame, and I will help you out," said the camera man, as he focused the unhappy picture and snapped the shutter. The ludricous (sic) situation made the frightened woman laugh through her tears.

Then the kodak man got a board, and went to the rescue.



Chechako is the Alaskan equivalent for the western word tenderfoot. Chechako is the Indian name of a bird that goes to Alaska early in the spring and after a brief stay disappears and is not seen again until the following season.

Kodak Fiend - In the early 1900s kodak was synonymous with camera. A kodak fiend was an amateur who was continuously snapping photographs.


Harrison, E.S. Nome and Seward Peninsula: history, description, biographies and stories. Seattle:Metropolitan Press, 1905. http://books.google.com/books?id=K5oUAAAAYAAJ&printsec=frontcover#PPP7,M1 (accessed February 20, 2009).


Blogger Miriam Robbins said...

Hmmm...now there's a word I haven't heard in quite a while: chechako.

Thanks for the great story!

February 24, 2009 at 4:40 PM  
Blogger footnoteMaven said...

If anyone would know that word, it would have to be you Miriam.


February 24, 2009 at 4:56 PM  
Blogger Chery Kinnick said...

Darn! Don't we get to see the photo? Let's hope the chechako had enough of a sense of humor not to sock the Kodak Fiend on the jaw after her rescue.

February 25, 2009 at 11:53 AM  
Blogger therapydoc said...

I love it. And love learning these new words.

February 25, 2009 at 2:50 PM  

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