Sunday, January 28, 2007

Esquimaux Exhibited.

Prof. Russell Potter explains:
In 1847, Captain John Parker brought an Eskimo couple from Cumberland Sound to the whaling port of Hull, England aboard his ship the 'Truelove.' Ostensibly brought to England to raise awareness of poor conditions in their homeland, the couple, Memiadluk and Uckaluk, were treated rather better than other such human zoo exhibits; Captain Parker placed them in the care of his ship's surgeon, who innoculated them for smallpox upon their arrival in England. Nonetheless, they were put on display in the Public Rooms beginning on 2 December, dressed in their sealskin clothes. They also appeared at the Mechanics Institute in Manchester, as well as at the lecture hall in Goodramgate, York (from which the above handbill survives).
Much more here. Or, fast forward 145 years.

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