About the www.Alaskool.org project and its developers


Interview with Sam Wanamaker

1. How old were you when you started school at Sheldon Jackson?
"I was 15 years old."

2. How long were you at Sheldon Jackson?
"I was only there for two years. I left to work during the war. I was glad I went there, I was sorry I had to leave."

3. What made you decide to go there?
"Mostly because my friends were going there, and I didn't want to got to Wrangell!" (laughs)

4. What things did you like and dislike about Sheldon Jackson?
"I liked sports, and I liked the half days because we would go to the machine shop, carpenter shop, or the boat shop. The professors were good and nice. We had our own electric plant and hydro plant. We got to work with them, I liked it. They had good food too. We had monthly weigh-ins, I gained 13lbs. in two months!(laughs)" It was very strict, Sheldon Jackson. We didn't have proms, there was no dancing! There was no smoking or drinking, there was a lot of religion, we had to pass good citizen class. We had to go to church every morning before school and twice on Sundays. I didn't like that!" (laughs)

5. What were your favorite subjects?
"I liked Ms. Whitmore, she taught general science, I liked the science classes."

6. Was it hard to be away from your family?
"No, in 1941 the war started, so I was only there for two years. I was really liking it. Sometimes I wanted to go home though."

7. Were there students who went to school with you, and later went on to be known leaders for the native people?
"Jimmy Walton, he worked with Russians, the governor flew him back though when he got sick."

8. Was speaking Tlingit prohibited, or was it allowed?
"In grade school, they didn't want us to. My parents never spoke Tlingit to me, so I didn't ever learn how."