Burlington Escorted Tours: Alaska, 1927

Burlington’s 1927 escorted tours booklet briefly described an Alaska tour and noted that “Complete details with day-to-day itinerary are given in a special Alaska folder which will be mailed gladly upon request.” This is that special folder.

Click image to download a 4.1-MB PDF of this 8-page booklet.

The folder describes 18-day tours to Skagway and 26-day tours to Seward. Neither tour went very far inland; the Skagway tour took the White Pass & Yukon Route to Lake Bennett; the Seward tour took the Copper River & Northwestern to Miles Glacier. Both of these railroads were built by Michael J. Heney. From Chicago, each tour took the Great Northern or Northern Pacific to Portland/Seattle and the other railroad back, but none of the tours stopped at Glacier or Yellowstone, though they did visit Mount Rainier National Park.

A single person willing to settle for an upper berth could take the 18-day tour for $336 and the 26-day tour for $385. That sounds cheap, but in today’s dollars that’s about $4,700 for 18 days and $5,400 for 26 days; multiply other 1927 prices by 14 to get today’s value. These prices included all meals, transportation, and accommodations, but not tips.

Burlington’s Alaska tours must have proven successful. We know that in just two years, Burlington would replace this 8-page booklet with a 36-page edition printed on much better paper. The 1929 booklet also included tours to California, Hawaii, and the Pacific Northwest, but information on the Alaska tours filled several more pages than in the 1927 version.

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