Sunday, December 30, 2012

Ruth Gruber - First To Report On Soviet Arctic - At Museum One More Week

Photo of Photo at Anchorage Exhibit

"In 1941, US Secretary of the Interior Harold I. Ickes appointed Ruth Gruber as his Field Representative to the Alaska Territories. . .  For 18 months, she reported on the conditions and experiences of American soldiers stationed there and documented the abundance of natural resources, development of industry, progress of the Alaska railroad, government initiatives, and the opening of land and air routes.  Encouraged by Ickes to take moving footage and color photgraphs - exhibited here for the first time - Gruber became a serious photojournalist."  [From Museum exhibit description.]

  The museum has a display of some of the old Alaska photos and some of the film footage.  There are also photos of her trip to the Soviet Arctic.  And her documentation of the Holocaust survivors on ships the British refused entry into Palestine after the war.

There's also a seven minute video interview with Gruber.  I don't remember when the video was taken, but it was recent and she was in her late 90's at the time.

From Ruth Gruber Video about Age 97
She's still alive today at 101. The exhibit is at the Anchorage Museum until January 6, so there isn't much time to see it.  There's a lot of history covered here and a lot of things to think about.  For example, her Alaska time coincided with some of the time covered in the book I'm reading Brian Garfield's Thousand Mile War about the Aleutian campaign in WW II.  There's also coverage of the Jews coming after WW II to Palestine which feeds into another post I've been thinking about - my comments on the AIFF winning Documentary Roadmap to Apartheid. 

1 comment:

  1. Several years ago, she was still reporting for NPR from Europe. Like Helen Thomas, she just kept going and going...


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