Dogs have shared our lives for thousands of years, so it’s only normal that they are included in our history.
Let’s take a look at several dogs who deserve to be remembered.
Balto Leads the Final Run to Nome
Balto, a black and white husky, was born in 1919 and was a working sled dog in Alaska. In 1925, doctors warned of a diptheria epidemic in Nome, Alaska, but the only plane available to get the serum to Nome was frozen in the cold weather. Officials then decided to use multiple teams of sled dogs to get the serum north. More than 20 mushers and their dogs ran through a blizzard with snow and strong winds, and temperatures lower than 23 degrees below zero.
Gunnar Kaasen, a Norwegian, and his team led by Balto ran the next to last leg of the run, and Balto showed his worth by leading the team through near white out blizzard conditions and almost entirely in the dark. In addition, when Kaasen’s team made it to the final stop prior to the run into Nome, he found the last musher asleep. He had Balto start up the team again and they made the last leg into Nome with the needed serum.
Afterwards, the public made Balto a hero. However, there were many heroes in that run. Leonhard Seppala and his team, led by Togo, came from Nome and picked up the serum from another musher. Many historians say that Togo led his team over the longest and most hazardous part of the trail, although they didn’t get as much recognition afterwards. In truth, although Balto got most of the recognition, all of the dogs and mushers who made that run deserved credit for their herculean efforts.
Balto died in 1933 at the age of 14. A statue of him can be found in Central Park in New York City.