In the early 1920's, settlers came to Alaska looking for gold. They traveled by boat to the coastal towns of Seward and Knik, and from there by land into the gold fields. The trail they used to travel inland is known today as the lditarod Trail, one of the National Historic Trails designated by the congress of the United States. The Iditarod Trail quickly became a major thoroughfare in Alaska, as the mail and supplies were carried across this trail. People also used it to get from place to place, including the priests, ministers, and judges who had to travel between villages down this trail was via god sled.
Once the gold rush ended, many gold-seekers went back to where they had come from, and suddenly there was much less travel on the lditarod Trail. The introduction of the airplane in the late 1920's meant dog teams were mode of transportation, of course airplane carrying the mail and supplies, there was less need for land travel in general. The final blow to the use of the dog teams was the appearance of snowmoniles.
By the mid 1960's most Alasknas didn't even know the lditarod Trail existed, or that dos teens had played a crucial role in Alaska's early settlements. Dorothy G.Page, a self-made historian, recognized how few people knew about the former use of sled dogs as working animals and about the Iditarod Trail's role in Alaska's colorful history. To she came up with the idea to have a god sled race over the Iditarod Trail. She presented her idea to an enthusiastic musher, as dog sled drivers are known, named Joe Redington, Sr. Soon the pages and the Redintons were working together to promote the idea of the Iditarod race.
Many people worked to make the first Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race a reality in 1967. The Aurora Dog Mushers Club, along with men from the Adult Camp in Sutton, helped clear years of overgrowth from the first nine miles of the Iditarod Trail. To raise interest in the race, a $25,000 purse was offered, with Joe Redington donating one acre of his land to help raise the funds. The short race, approximately 27 miles long, was put on a second time in 1969.
After these first two successful races, the goal was to lengthen the race a little further to the ghost town of Iditarod by 1973. However in 1972, the U.S. Army reopened the trail as a winter exercise, and so in 1973, the decision was made to take the race all the way to the city of Nome-over 1,000 miles. There were who believed it could bot be done and that it wad crazy to send a bunch out into vast, uninhabited Alaskan wilderness. But the race went! 22 mushers finished that year, and to date over 400 people have completed it.
In 1925, when a diphtheria outbreak threatened the lives of people in the remote town of Nome, the government used the Iditarod Trail to transport medicine nearly 700 miles to the town. If the author chose the include this fact is the passage, it would best fit in