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Vern Tejas papers

Guide to the Vern Tejas papers

Collection number: HMC-0657.
Creator: Tejas, Vernon.
Title: Vern Tejas papers.
Dates: 1971-2003.
Volume of collection: 2.9 cubic feet.
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Collection summary: The papers and photographs of an Alaskan mountain climber.

Biographical note:
Vern Tejas spent over 32 years mountain guiding high altitude peaks in Alaska and the world. He achieved the first winter solo ascent of Denali and the first winter ascent of Logan and Hunter. He has climbed the Seven Summits (Bass List) over 9 times and currently has the speed record for all 8 of the 7 summits in 134 days, set in 2010. He worked over a decade for Alaska Telecom doing tower work (building and maintaining communication towers) on Alaska’s North Slope. Vern had a child, Cayman Irvine, with Gail Irvine. Vern is married to Carole Tejas and temporarily resides in West Greenwich Village, NY with her when they are not traveling the world. Together they work as international mountain guides for Alpine Ascents International.

Collection description:
This collection consists of Vern Tejas’ personal papers, including correspondence, notebooks, clippings, and photographs documenting his career as a mountaineer.

Arrangement: The collection is arranged in the following series:

Series 1: Correspondence; undated, 1979-1994
Series 2: Personal papers; undated, 1971-1997
Series 3: Color slides and photographs; undated, 1988-1998
Series 4: Videocassettes; undated

Digitized copies: Select images have been digitized and are available on Alaska’s Digital Archives. For information about obtaining copies, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Rights note: Vern Tejas retains copyright to all materials during his lifetime. Permission must be obtained prior to any publication of materials.

Preferred citation: Vern Tejas papers, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Acquisition note: Vern Tejas gave the collection to the Archives in 2003.

Processing information: This collection was arranged and partially described by Jeffrey Sinnott in 2004. Additional description was added by Marty Damron in 2009 and Arlene Schmuland in 2010. Biographical information was provided by Vern Tejas in 2010. Oversized and rolled items donated in 2021 were described by Becky Butler in 2023.

Container list:
Series 1: Correspondence; undated, 1979-1994. 0.2 cubic feet.
Arranged by type, chronologically thereunder.

Box/Folder Description Date
1/1-15 Letters 1979-1996
1/16 Letters undated
1/17 Family letters undated, 1979-1987
1/18 Greeting cards 1980-1995
1/19 Greeting cards undated
1/20 Postcards 1979-1993
1/21 e-mail messages 1994

Series 2: Personal papers; undated, 1971-1997. 1.2 cubic feet.
This series is arranged by type.

Box/Folder Description Date
1/22 Biographical and family papers undated, 1971-1982
1/23 Magazine articles about Vern Tejas undated, 1989-1991
1/24 Newspaper clippings about Vern Tejas undated, 1976-1994
1/25-26 Mountain climbing clippings undated, 1989-1997
1/27 Everest climb papers 1992
1/28 Mt. Logan climb papers 1986
1/29 Mt. McKinley solo winter ascent papers 1988-1989
1/30 Mt. Vaughn Antarctic expedition papers 1993-1994
1/31 Mt. Vaughn Antarctic expedition clippings 1993-1995
1/32 Cook report on Mt. McKinley 1994-1998
1/33 Certificates 1988-2003
1/34 Dangerous steps: Vernon Tejas and the solo winter ascent of Mount McKinley interview transcripts 1988, 1990
1/35 Mt. McKinley climbing permits and fee receipts 1982-1994
1/36-37 Publications and clippings undated
1/38-40 Mountaineering and personal journal notebooks; address and mountaineering lists circa 1980
1/41 Address journals circa 1980
1/42 Cassette tape: Gwaltney  & Gwaltney commercial spot undated
2 Artifacts: Stuffed animals undated
Oversize folder Pastel portrait (oversize), photocopy of newspaper headline undated
Oversize folder Certificate of achievement from Alaska State Legislature 2006 April 24

Series 3: Color slides and photographs; undated, 1988-1998. 1.0 cubic feet.
35 mm slides followed by photographs. Slides are arranged by subject, generally chronologically. Not all folder descriptions are accurate: researchers may wish to review all folders when seeking images of specific events.

Box/Folder Description Date
3/1 First winter solo ascent. 14 slides. 1988
3/2 Antarctica. 65 slides. 1988
3/3 Bike Aconcagua, Vinson, paraglide and bike. 127 slides. 1988 December
3/4 Anchorage Fur Rendezvous. 36 slides. 1989 February
3/5 Zangmu to Nepal: Everest and China. 169 slides. 1989 March-September
3/6 Prince William Sound, oil spill, Sergeant Ice Field, and Homer, Alaska. 157 slides. 1989 April-May
3/7 GPS expedition, MAC. 47 slides. 1989
3/8 McKinley climb. 19 slides. 1990 June
3/9 ELBRUS and Moscow. 28 slides. 1990
3/10 Everest: approach, Lho La, Kumbu, Katmandu, Zang Mu, Xigar. 282 slides. 1990
3/11 Chilkoot Charlie’s “To the summit.” 14 slides. 1991 May 20
3/12 ESPN. 128 slides. Undated
3/13 National Geographic, Mt. Vernon. 11 slides. 1993 March
3/14-15 Mt. Vaughn Antarctic expedition (MVAE). 406 slides. 1994
3/16 National Geographic Society press conference, MVAE. 95 slides. 1994
3/17 Airplane, MVAE. 37 slides. 1994
3/18 Antarctica. 84 slides. 1994-1995
3/19 Explorers Club banquet. 32 slides. 1995 March
3/20 Africa. 94 slides. 1998 February-March
3/21 USMC survival slide show. 29 slides. Undated
3/22-23 Unidentified. 305 slides, 86 35 mm negatives. Undated, 1988-1998
3/24 Snow sculpture. 25 slides. Undated
3/25 NSF—Antarctic. 40 slides Undated
3/26-31 Unidentified. Color prints. Undated
3/32 Book signings. Color prints and negatives.
3/33-34 Paragliding. Color prints and negatives.
3/35 Denali winter solo ascent, other ascents. Prints, slides, and negatives 1988
3/36 Mt. Sanford. Color negatives. 1989
3/37 Alps (?). Color prints and negatives. 1990
3/38 Antarctica. Color prints. 1988
3/39 Russia (Elbrus). Color prints and negatives. 1990
3/40 Mt. Baker. Color prints and negatives. 1993
3/41 Port City. Color prints. 1997
3/42 East Africa. Color prints. 1998
3/43 Iran, Moscow, Africa?. Color prints 1998
3/44 Kosciuszko National Park. Color prints. Undated
3/45 Tibet, Lhasa. Color prints. Undated
3/46 Personal photos. Color prints. Undated
3/47 Eskilstuna newspaper article photographs. Color prints and newspaper clipping. Undated, 1994
3/48 Uhuru Peak, Tanzania. Color prints. Undated
3/49-51 Small group and individual photographs, early personal. Color prints. Undated
3/52 Panoramic prints. Undated
3/53 Personal photographs. Color prints. Undated
3/54 Aconcagua bike trip, climb. Color negatives. Undated
3/55 Undescribed. Color slides and negatives. Undated
3/56 Personal photographs. Undated
3/57 Unidentified photograph of climbing party. Undated
Oversize folder Panoramic photographs and poster Undated

Series 4: Videocassettes; undated. 0.5 cubic feet (12 tapes).
This series contains video of a climbing expedition.

Box Description Dates
4 Videotapes. undated

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