Title

Soiled Doves and Gentlemen Miners: Ambiguous Gender Roles in the Klondike Gold Rush, 1897-1902

Presenter Information

Talea Anderson

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC 271

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

The Klondike Gold Rush of 1897-1900 drew thousands of people north in search of gold. Among these stampeders were women who famously defied Victorian conventions by dressing in masculine attire, working in the public sphere, and openly participating in the entertainment and prostitution industry of Dawson City, the epicenter of the gold rush. As seen in the Klondike Nugget, a prominent newspaper in Dawson City, Klondike society at once feared the corrupting effects of masculine settings on northern women, yet also perceived benefits in women’s participation in the public sphere. The ambivalence displayed by the Klondike Nugget provides one glimpse of the struggle to define new roles for North American women at the beginning of the twentieth century.

Faculty Mentor(s)

Karen Blair

Additional Mentoring Department

History

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Soiled Doves and Gentlemen Miners: Ambiguous Gender Roles in the Klondike Gold Rush, 1897-1902

SURC 271

The Klondike Gold Rush of 1897-1900 drew thousands of people north in search of gold. Among these stampeders were women who famously defied Victorian conventions by dressing in masculine attire, working in the public sphere, and openly participating in the entertainment and prostitution industry of Dawson City, the epicenter of the gold rush. As seen in the Klondike Nugget, a prominent newspaper in Dawson City, Klondike society at once feared the corrupting effects of masculine settings on northern women, yet also perceived benefits in women’s participation in the public sphere. The ambivalence displayed by the Klondike Nugget provides one glimpse of the struggle to define new roles for North American women at the beginning of the twentieth century.