Taku: The Heart of North America's Last Great Wilderness


232 pages
Contains Photos, Maps, Bibliography, Index
ISBN 0-88999-540-0
DDC 971.1'85





Illustrations by Naomi and Peter Mitcham
Reviewed by Barry M. Gough

Barry M. Gough is a history professor at Wilfrid Laurier University and
author of The Northwest Coast: British Navigation, Trade, and
Discoveries to 1812.


As a geographical area of settlement and development, travel and
adventure, Taku is relatively unknown but a subject of literary promise
as one of the remote quarters of North America and the world. The work
under review is replete with understanding of the uniqueness of locale
and population. Neither a history nor a geography, it is more a
not-entirely-systematic record of tangled human experience in a
landscape almost too vast to be defined. Saltwater and riverscape,
mountain terrain and forest are presented on an enlarged scale. Mitcham
portrays the complexities of life on this cross-border frontier (Taku is
located on the Canadian side of the Alaska border) with sympathy and
understanding. Her book is richly illustrated with photographs from
Alaskan and Canadian sources, with watercolors by her daughter, and with
ink drawings by her husband.


Mitcham, Allison., “Taku: The Heart of North America's Last Great Wilderness,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 13, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/13605.