New history exhibition 'Footnotes' has got heart and soles
September 27, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sept. 27, 2013
Contact: Sarah Henning (907) 929-9231 (w) (907) 250-3352 (c) email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
New Anchorage Museum exhibition has got heart and soles “Footnotes: Shoes with Stories to Tell” on view Oct. 4 through Feb. 16, 2014
From XtraTufs to dog booties to mukluks, a new Anchorage Museum exhibition showcases life in Alaska from the ground up.
In “Footnotes: Shoes with Stories to Tell,” each pair of footwear launches a story unique to Alaska’s history. Many tales focus on survival, emphasizing how in Alaska a good pair of shoes can save your life. For example, learn how the U.S. Army — originally ill-equipped for Arctic conditions — adopted shoe technology from Alaska Native designs.
“Footnotes” features more than 120 pairs of footwear, the majority of which come from the museum’s permanent collection. Exhibition highlights include:
• The sneaker Binky the polar bear snatched from an Alaska Zoo visitor in 1994. In the highly publicized incident, an Australian tourist crawled over the safety rails to take a picture. The polar bear grabbed her, breaking her leg. Binky guarded the woman’s shoe for three days before zoo officials could retrieve it.
• The bronzed boots of Bill Bishop. In 1956 the Richfield Oil Corporation geologist was wearing these boots when he told his crew to drill near the Swanson River, becoming the first person to discover commercial quantities of oil in Alaska.
• A pair of thigh-high seal boots owned by Norwegian gold miner Arne Ericson. In 1920 while prospecting in Flat, Ericson learned his wife was very ill. Determined to reach her, he walked the 353-mile Iditarod trail to Anchorage in these boots. The trek took 21 days. The couple was reunited, and she recovered fully.
With every pair of ivory ice cleats, gold rush girl slippers and bunny boots, this exhibition paints a picture of ingenuity, individuality and can-do spirit throughout Alaska’s history.
The Anchorage Museum is the largest museum in Alaska and one of the top 10 most visited attractions in the state. The museum’s mission is to share and connect Alaska with the world through art, history and science. Learn more online at anchoragemuseum.org.