MODEL CABIN - Peter Lucchetti and Buckwheat Donahue chat with visitors in front of “A Winter’s Night”. About 75 people attended the reception.AC-C

Lucchetti’s library painting unveiled

‘A Winter’s Night’ features local model, prints sold to support more art for public library

Peter Lucchetti, local artist, unveiled his oil painting of a trapper’s cabin entitled, “A Winter’s Night” Sunday, May 9, at a reception at the Skagway Public Library.
Buckwheat Donahue, local tourism director, was the model for the painting which will hang above the library service desk. Lucchetti is donating a limited edition of 500 prints, available at the library, with proceeds going to finance future art projects.
Lucchetti’s work, chosen from a number of proposals, was financed by a grant from Vivian McCann of Seattle in memory of her husband, Joseph McCann, who was born in Skagway in 1911. His father, Alfred McCann, arrived in Skagway in 1898, helped build the White Pass & Yukon Route and was a conductor.
At Skagway High School, Joseph McCann participated in dramatics, hockey, hiking, and ice skating and played violin in the orchestra. Although he left Skagway in 1929 to attend St. Mary’s College in San Francisco, he often talked about Skagway said Mrs. McCann’s, sister, Ethel Johnson of Seattle, who contacted librarian Julene Fairbanks to offer a $5,000 grant. A portion was used to purchase a rug for the story hour room.
Later in life Joseph was a customs officer in Fairbanks and Seattle. He died in Seattle in 1996.
Born in Chicago and raised in Pennsylvania, Lucchetti earned a BFA from Penn State University and an MFA from the University of Massachusetts and taught art at the University of Massachusetts, Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass., and One West Contemporary Art Center in Fort Collins, Colo.
He worked for the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park for seven seasons, and in 1998 he was artist in residence for the Park. He has continued his own work focusing on the gold rush.
“There (at the Park) I soaked up countless stories of Alaska’s native and pioneer histories,” the artist said. “These stories, along with the immense beauty of this ‘Great Land’ became seed for countless paintings.”


Giovanni Ragonese (left) plays a stirring tune to a packed house at the annual International Folk Festival in Skagway on April 23. The Presbyterian Church was jumping for several hours. Right, Tony Scott plays the washboard with Tagish country legends Art and Kevin. JB

Big weekend ahead for Skagway Traditional Council
The Skagway Traditional Council will be holding several tribal activities for youth and elders May 20 to May 22. On Thursday, May 20, a Tribal Leaders Summit will be held at the STC offices beginning at 1 p.m. Native community elders, youth, and leaders will gather to prepare for the Plant Forum and discuss tribal unity, language and culture, common issues, and the commitment to working together. It is open only to guests of the tribes and First Nations.
The third annual Traditional Plant and Native Knowledge Forum will be begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, May 21 at the Elks, followed by a field demonstration on the Dyea Flats at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 22 (meet at STC offices by 9:15 a.m.)
Tlingit and Tagish elders Jessie Johnnie and Ida Calmegane return, along with Tlingit language instructors Florence Sheakley, Nora Dauenhauer and Richard Dauenhauer, and SEARHC chief dietician Libby Watanabe.
Finally, a Youth and Elders Activity, “Sweat Lodge Training”, will be held at 2 p.m. that Saturday on the Dyea Flats. Lily Tuzroyluke, Skagway Tribal Wellness Coordinator, and Justin McDonald of the Organized Village of Kake will lead an activity on how to gather materials needed to run a traditional sweat lodge (Xaay Hit).

Case & Draper’s first tent store in Skagway in 1898. Alaska State Museum

Case & Draper exhibit opens at museum

Case & Draper Photographs, 1898 - 1920, an exhibition of photographs of early 20th century life in Southeast Alaska, featuring Skagway and the Klondike Gold Rush, Alaska Natives and their arts, steamships and the White Pass & Yukon Route, fishing, and mining industries. The traveling exhibit organized by the Alaska State Museum is now at the Skagway Museum through September, 2004.
The work of photographers William H. Case and Herbert H. Draper offers a glimpse of early 20th century Alaska. Fueled by the excitement of the Klondike Gold Rush, they opened a tent studio in Skagway in 1898 and later another studio in Juneau. During the next 22 years, they photographed the Klondike Gold Rush, the rise and fall of notorious con man Soapy Smith and his gang, construction of the White Pass & Yukon Railroad, and the growth of Southeast Alaska into a center for fishing, canneries, and mining.
Nearly 800 of the original prints, glass plate and nitrate negatives of the work of Case & Draper were preserved by Juneau historian Bea Shepard, who acquired the collection from William Norton, who had received them from William Case’s daughter, Madge. The Norton Collection of Case & Draper photographs is now permanently preserved at the Alaska State Library Historical Collections, a gift from Bea Shepard who is the guest curator for the traveling exhibition organized by the Alaska State Museum. Juneau photographer Ron Klein prepared the contemporary prints in the exhibit from the original Case & Draper negatives and additional photographs in the exhibit are from the Alaska State Library, the Skagway Museum, and the George and Edna Rapuzzi Collection in Skagway.
Exhibit hours: Monday-Friday, 9 am - 5 pm; Saturday, 10 am - 5 pm; Sunday, 1 pm - 4 pm. Call 983-2420.