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In 1896 Captain Austin Eugene Lathrop, a building contractor turned shipmaster, sailed to Alaska from Puget Sound in the small steam schooner L. J. Perry. He sailed right into the Klondike gold rush. Instead of turning to pick & pan, however, Cap Lathrop stuck to his bridge and toted prospectors and their pokes. Nowadays, in rich Central Alaska, stout, furrowed, 73-year-old Cap Lathrop is the head man. He owns a big salmon cannery, a bank, a coal mine, an airplane hangar, three cinemas, two newspapers, a general store, apartment houses, and is a...

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