Diary & Unalakleet Monthly, ca. 1913

Value (2017) | $15,000 Insurance
Watch  

GUEST:
Well, this is a sort of a diary that my grandfather had written. He was a teacher, missionary, educator in Unalakleet, Alaska, back around the turn of the...

APPRAISER:
Unalakleet?

GUEST:
Unalakleet. My grandmother had sort of chased him down to Alaska, decided that she wanted to marry him, and she tracked him down.

APPRAISER:
She went pretty far, right?

GUEST:
She went to the end of the earth. He couldn't go any further, so she kind of had him. This is a diary that he wrote when my grandmother and mother and two brothers had left him for a while. So he's recounting his time alone. He writes some text, and then he even drew some pictures to amuse them. Here's a picture of Daddy with my Uncle Bill, my mom, Ruth, and Elmer, the youngest one.

APPRAISER:
Incredible. And he's named who they are, and you can see your mom there, your uncles. And what brought him to Alaska? Was he...

GUEST:
He was a minister, and I think he just thought it was something that he should do. I'm certain it was a government program, because some of the documents suggest that he was on the government payroll for a while.

APPRAISER:
So he was working, teaching. This other item is a magazine that he edited, correct, when he was up there?

GUEST:
Yes. I think he created it and everything.

APPRAISER:
He created it, edited it, probably illustrated it. Called Northern Lights. And the very interesting thing here is the fact that, to establish any kind of printing in Alaska, this remote area that you talked about, is... would not be an easy undertaking. And to get the equipment to do it was quite a commitment. And he brought it to the Eskimo children, and he had them actually publish the magazine. So he actually taught them to publish and produce this magazine, this newspaper, for themselves, and to educate them. It says, "It is our plan, by the help of the pupils, to publish the paper monthly at Unalakleet, in the interest of the schools of Alaska." There's about two years worth of them bound in here. It's only a few pages each, but it gives interesting talk of what's going on, recipes, local news, school news. But it is a really... a very professionally done and organized newspaper. And again, something like this is very ephemeral and would disappear and not likely be seen if you hadn't brought it here to the Roadshow. It even says in there that this is the only Eskimo newspaper in existence.

GUEST:
I saw that.

APPRAISER:
And that may very well be true. And that with the diary, and you also had some other papers related to his travels.

GUEST:
He had kept detailed expenses, so you can find out what reindeer meat cost on June 13, 1913.

APPRAISER:
The cost of reindeer meat. Altogether, for insurance value, I would easily put this at $5,000 to $10,000.

GUEST:
Oh, my goodness.

APPRAISER:
The combination, I mean, it's such a fabulous story, very interesting man, and you're very lucky to have that history in your family.

GUEST:
It's wonderful to have in our heritage.

APPRAISER:
Thank you for bringing it in.

GUEST:
Well, thank you very much.

APPRAISER:
Thank you.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Christie's
New York
None
New York, NY
Leslie Hindman Auctioneers
Update (2017)
$15,000 Insurance
Appraised value (2002)
$5,000 Insurance$10,000 Insurance
Event
Cleveland, OH (June 22, 2002)
Material
Paper
October 31, 2011: A viewer's recent email regarding this Inupiaq cribbage board prompted us to review the use of the term "Eskimo" in this and past appraisals.

It is ANTIQUES ROADSHOW's intention to use culturally respectful terms when discussing the history of items being appraised on the show. We acknowledge that terms that describe a person or group’s identity regarding race, ethnicity, religion, etc., can change over time or have different meaning to different people. "Eskimo" is a word that has different connotations depending on where you live in the Northern Hemisphere.

In Canada and Greenland, "Eskimo" has negative connotations and is no longer an accepted term. "Inuit" is preferred, but that term is not commonly used in the United States. In the U.S., "Eskimo" is not considered to be derogatory and is in common usage. "Eskimo" is used when speaking of two main indigenous cultural groups collectively: "Yupik" (a culture group from Western Alaska) and "Inupiat" (a culture group from Northern Alaska and St. Lawrence Island in the Bering Sea). When one of these groups is being referenced, "Yupik" or "Inupiat" is favored over "Eskimo" by Alaskan Natives.

The term "Alaskan Natives" includes all indigenous peoples of Alaska: Eskimo, Unangan (Aleut), and American Indian, and is also considered broadly acceptable.

Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.

Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."

Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.

Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.

Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.

Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.

Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.