Bob Bartlett of Alaska: A Life in Politics by Claus Naske

By Claus Naske

Claus-M. Naske has written the 1st biography of the fellow who helped to make Alaska the forty-ninth nation and who served as one in all Alaska's first senators. greater than a local political background, the tale of Bob Bartlett contains his competition to U.S. involvement in Vietnam and his early warnings in regards to the hazards posed by means of radiation.

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Extra resources for Bob Bartlett of Alaska: A Life in Politics

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24 As did others working in seasonal jobs, the Bartlett family had money when Ed worked. During the off-season, economic conditions could be rough. Money, however, was needed to pay inordinate medical expenses. Bob had badly crossed eyes which required a number of costly operations. Bob later remembered the first of these performed without an anesthetic, with him seated in a chair "with his eyes propped open with metal sticks" during the operation. 25 Then there was the ever present reality of his older sister Doris' poor health.

This biography is based primarily on the rich Bartlett papers that he donated to the University of Alaska. These papers are housed at the archives on the Fairbanks campus. It is also based on inverviews with many of Bartlett's relatives, friends, and associates. C. and Alaska. His wife and daughters offered invaluable recollections and insights. Undoubtedly, there remain many untapped sources of information about this unusual man. His circle of friends and associates was so wide that it was not possible to contact all of them and still complete this work in a timely fashion.

He could only hope to educate members of Congress about Alaska, its problems, needs, and promises, and persuade them to vote as he would have done. Throughout his life, Bartlett believed that Alaska's many problems would be solved and its needs provided by economic expansion and population growth. He was firmly convinced that it was the responsibility of the federal government to help Alaska achieve economic stability. Both as a delegate and a United States senator, Bartlett used his considerable energies and talents in prodding Congress and the executive departments into fulfilling their responsibilities to Alaska.

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