This collection of images derives from Part I and Part III (of four parts) of The Fur Seals and Fur-Seal Islands of the North Pacific Ocean submitted by Dr. David Starr Jordan to Secretary of the Treasury Lyman J. Gage on February 24, 1898 and published by the Government Printing Office in 1898. Dr. Jordan served as commissioner in charge of an investigation into the condition and needs of the fur-seal herds of the North Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea during the seasons of 1896 and 1897.
The investigation was an outgrowth of the United States’ belief that the regulations formulated by the Paris Tribunal of Arbitration for the protection and preservation of the fur seal had failed to accomplish their objective. The results of the investigation together with those of an independent investigation made by Great Britain were to form the basis of a reconsideration of the regulations. An act of Congress authorized the Secretary of the Treasury to expend “a sum sufficient to provide for the employment of persons to conduct scientific investigations….” In accordance with this act, Dr. Jordan, president of Leland Stanford Junior University (now Stanford University), was appointed commissioner in charge of the investigation. Originators of the various illustrations, drawings, and photographs include N. B. Miller, Charles Townsend, James Macoun, Todd, Otto Voss, Harry D. Chichester, and Bristow Adams.
Source: Jordan, D. S., ed. The Fur Seals and Fur-Seal Islands of the North Pacific Ocean. 3 vols. Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1899.