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Skagway, Alaska

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Skagway, the northernmost ferry stop on the southeast route, sprang up overnight in 1897 as a trading post serving Klondike Gold Rush pioneers about to set off on the five-hundred-mile ordeal. Having grown from one cabin to a town of twenty thousand in three months, Skagway, rife with disease and desperado violence, was reported to be "hell on earth." It boasted over seventy bars and hundreds of prostitutes, and was controlled by organized criminals, including Jefferson "Soapy" Smith, notorious for cheating hapless prospectors out of their gold. By 1899, the Gold Rush was over, but the …
Information by Rough Guides

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