The nights are getting really long as we approach winter. One of the nice things about having a huge polar research collection, is that whenever our northern climate starts to wear on you, there are plenty of harrowing stories in the collection about places much colder and much darker through the winter. Today we stumbled on a northern version of A Thousand and One Nights. But in the polar regions, one month-long night will do the job for a pretty long story.
Arctic Nights' Entertainments (London: Blackie and Sons, 1935) recounts the life and adventures of August Masik as told by him to Isobel Hutchinson over 25 days of darkness. Born in Estonia, "Gus" took to the seas as a young man. His travels took him into the arctic regions where he decided to stay, but he never settled. His life is full of harrowing journeys across the ice. A colorful storyteller, it is tough to judge when he is dead serious and when he is exaggerating for effect. But, if the Hanover winter gets to you, come into Rauner: Masik's tales will warm you up.
You can see the book by asking for Stefansson Alcove F 909 .M38.
Rauner Special Collections Library houses rare books, manuscripts, and Dartmouth College Archives for the Dartmouth College Library. We think it is one of the coolest places on campus: besides a great exhibits program, the reading room is open to the public. Where else can you see a first edition of Pride and Prejudice or a copy of the James Audubon double elephant folio Birds of America in the Upper Valley? The Rauner blog is a great way to get acquainted with the collections, or go to Instagram if you have a shorter attention span.