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Second edition of “Voyage With the Labrador Eskimos, 1880-1881”

Hello everyone,

After four years in the making, the second edition of Voyage with the Labrador Eskimos, 1880-1881 is finally out! From its initial 86 pages, the book has been expanded to no less than… 300 pages!

Cover – Second edition – Voyage With the Labrador Eskimos, 1880-1881.

The first edition consisted of the English translation of the main portion of Johan Adrian Jacobsen’s 1880-1881 diary. It covered the period from June 28, 1880 (as he was sailing to Greenland to recruit Inuit to bring back to Europe) to January 20, 1881 (four days after the death of the last survivor of the group of eight Labrador Inuit). This portion of the diary was translated by Professor Hartmut Lutz.

Thanks to Dieter Riedel, PhD, we now have access to a larger extract of the diary. It starts in October 1879, when Jacobsen, his brother Jacob Martin, and zoo owner Carl Hagenbeck had the idea of purchasing a ship to travel to the Arctic to recruit Inuit; and it goes until July 24, 1881, the day before Jacobsen headed on his next mission: collecting artifacts on the Northwest Coast of North America for the Berlin Ethnology Museum.

But that’s not all, thanks to Dieter’s dedication, this new edition also includes the English translation of:

  • Jacobsen’s letters with the Greenland Inspector in July 1880 when he was denied the permission to bring Greenlanders to Europe.
  • Over 25 letters, Jacobsen received from family, friends, and business partners between November 9, 1880, and Dec 2, 1881, which mention the Labrador Inuit or give us insight into the world of 19th century “human zoos.”
  • Excerpts from two publications by Jacobsen where he talks about his travels on the Eisbar.
  • The 1880 registration documents for the ship Eisbar.

New additions also include:

  • A foreword by Cathrine Baglo, PhD, Tromsø University Museum, who has done much research on the groups of Samis who participated in ethnographical exhibits. Cathrine was also the instigator of the three-day workshop entitled Johan Adrian Jacobsen: Collector of People and Things held in Tromsø in 2016.
  • A revised and expanded introduction which provides an overview of the multi-year research which led to this second edition.
  • An afterword by Christine Chávez and Barbara Plankensteiner, respectively curator of the American collections and director at the Museum am Rothenbaum – World Cultures and Arts in Hamburg. They give us insight into how the museum came to preserve Johan Adrian Jacobsen’s archives, and express the importance for his archives to be made available to the descendants and communities of the individuals who crossed Jacobsen’s path.
  • An index of people and place names.

Finally, the number of photos and illustrations has gone from 14 to 54.

The book can be obtained in paper and ebook format from various online retailers such as Amazon, Indigo, Kobo, etc. It can also be ordered from your favorite local bookstore or directly from Polar Horizons, the publisher. This second edition is available in English only.

We sincerely hope that this new enlarged edition will prove to be worthwhile and meaningful to all who have an interest in better understanding the story of Abraham Ulrikab, his family, and companions who shared the last four months of their lives with Johan Adrian Jacobsen.

In less than two weeks, on December 14, will mark the 139th anniversary of the death of Nuggasak, the first of the eight Inuit to pass away. May this book contribute to their story never be forgotten.

Thank you! Nakummek!
France Rivet

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