Item No: #362960 [Chasing the Aurora Borealis] Kyokko o tadzu nete. Keijuro Tsukamoto.
[Chasing the Aurora Borealis] Kyokko o tadzu nete
[Chasing the Aurora Borealis] Kyokko o tadzu nete

Rare Japanese Alaska Expedition

[Chasing the Aurora Borealis] Kyokko o tadzu nete

Notes: A young Japanese adventurer's account of a six-month trip from Seattle, to northern Canada, through Alaska, and back, chasing the aurora borealis in 1919. At the beginning, he claims scientific credentials, only a spirit of adventure and a desire to wander. He wrote the book during the trip and the introduction (dated 1920) is datelined Seattle.

The publisher clearly saw this as an adventure tale and advertised other mystery and adventure novels at the back of the book.

Illustrated throughout with poor-quality halftone photographs (typical of Japanese books at the time), and a folding map of Tsukamoto's track.

This first edition is not in OCLC (or apparently, the National Diet Library in Japan). OCLC does record the second edition, published in 1943, during the Second World War, under the title Arasuka yori aryushan e [From Alaska to the Aleutian Islands]. In 1942, the Japanese Army invaded the Aleutian Islands, and the US Army retook the territory in 1943. That activity may have generated new interest in this account of Alaska.

[2], [14 plates], [map], [2], 3, [1], 8, 397, [18 ads] pages.

Edition + Condition: First edition (first printing). A good-only copy. Ex-library, with old stamps, a pocket at the back, and remnants of a label on the spine. Rather ugly, but nevertheless, a rare Alaska book.

Publication: Tokyo: Hakusuisha, 1921 [Taisho 10].

Item No: #362960

Price: $250