Saturday, February 25, 2012

Alaska Highway

Facing the possible invasion of Japan after the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbour, the United States decided to build the 1,500 mile Alaska Highway from Dawson Creek, B.C., to Fairbanks, Alaska. Canadian Prime Minister Mackenzie King agreed as long as Canada did not have to pay for the building or maintenance of the road during the War. The Highway was built by the U.S. Army and civilian construction companies and opened at a ceremony on November 20, 1942.


Whitehorse, November 20, 1942

Inauguration Land Mail Route : Edmonton to Whitehorse

Edmonton, September 22, 1943

Mail from Construction Company Employee

Letter from Camp 14E, Dowell Construction Company
Whitehorse to Jacksonville, April 7, 1943
Registered air mail (1 cent overpayment)


(Not in author's collection)

Post-War : Northwest Highway System

After the war, the Canadian portion of the Alaska Highway was taken over by the Canadian government. The Northwest Highway System, as it was called, was maintained by the Canadian Army, with headquarters in Whitehorse, Yukon.

Whitehorse to Toronto, May 23, 1946

Major W.L. Gibson
Northwest Highway System
Whitehorse, Y.T. & MPO 1315, Edmonton, Alta.