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Balto

In January 1925, Alaskan doctors feared a deadly diphtheria epidemic would spread among the children of Nome. Medicine to stop the outbreak existed, but doctors needed to travel nearly a thousand miles to Anchorage to retrieve it. With no trains running that far north and the only available airplane sidelined by a frozen engine, the best chance of transporting the medicine across the icy tundra was by sled dog.

More than 20 sled teams coordinated to make the trip through blinding snow and...

In January 1925, Alaskan doctors feared a deadly diphtheria epidemic would spread among the children of Nome. Medicine to stop the outbreak existed, but doctors needed to travel nearly a thousand miles to Anchorage to retrieve it. With no trains running that far north and the only available airplane sidelined by a frozen engine, the best chance of transporting the medicine across the icy tundra was by sled dog.

More than 20 sled teams coordinated to make the trip through blinding snow and sub-zero temperatures. On the first of February, the package was handed off to the final team. Lead by Balto, the team covered 53 treacherous miles back to Nome in 20 hours. Newspapers and radio around the world followed the trek, fascinated by the brave team whose efforts eventually helped end the epidemic.

*Credit for the description goes to the Central Park NYC website.

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Balto
Central Park
New York City, NY 10022
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Morgan Smith
September 21, 2010
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