These deeds to 1 square inch of Yukon territory were given away in cereal boxes

Originally published at:

It’s interesting that it’s the Yukon, and not Alaska.

It clearly is about the mythology around the 1897 Yukon gold strike. likely more kids knew about it than the gold in Nome or Sutter’s mill, or whatever.

And yet, no mineral rights.

This is like Jean Lafoote stealing all the treasure from Cap’n Crunch.


[Removed because I apparently can’t read an article well enough while skimming.]


Futility Closet did a good deep dive on this. Basically, nobody asked the lawyers and the whole thing wasn’t very legit. An old timey version of those star naming scams, basically.


Take a look at the original article, they mention the Scrooge McDuck story:

In 1956, the Klondike Big Inch Land Promotion became the inspiration for a Uncle Scrooge McDuck story, where Scrooge visits his square inch of land in Texas and finds a prairie dog with oil on its feet leads leading Scrooge to believe there is oil under his land. Donald Duck and the nephews buy cereal boxes around the country to obtain the neighboring square inches so that Scrooge can drill for the oil. Later, Scrooge discovers the oil had come from leaking car engine.


I’m suppose to have a tiny plot like that at the Laphroaig Scotch Whisky distillery. Unfortunately I don’t see myself going there anytime soon.


I remember reading the little booklet that came with Laphroaig detailing how I could get my own tiny plot of cold wet peat bog, and decided it wasn’t worth getting spam emails from Laphroaig all the time.


Unsurprising that the deeds didn’t include mineral rights, as very few land titles in Canada include those, and they are usually grandfathered in. Mineral rights belong to the crown, and private individuals must lease them to extract them.


Ah, I guess that’s what I get for skimming the article! (And confused now, since the big panel from the comic hadn’t loaded when I first looked it it. Curse you buggy internet!)

Those spam email are awesome. They remind me that I should stop working after hours and go upstairs to grab a drink.

When I die, they can divide my ashes up between all my square inches of peat bog.


Doesn’t sound like a particularly awesome deed then, unless you’re building a high rise for ants.



I’m not sure how 10,000 deeds becomes a quarter of an acre. It seems more like 10,000 square inches, which is a 100x100 inch square. Big enough to stand in, but you’re going to struggle to pitch a tent. To get his quarter acre he’ll need closer to 1.6 million deeds.


They must be imperial inches.


You mean it was a scam?..Run by serial criminals? Bah! Duped again.


Cards Against Humanity did something similar a few years ago for their advent-calendar-type thing.

They apparently also ran into some legal issues but managed to mostly work around them by not issuing actual deeds, but rather, limited licenses to use the land.

I have my “deed” to a square foot of that island somewhere… always thought it would be fun to go camp there some day, but apparently to maintain good relations with the locals they had to limit use of the island to daylight hours, alas.


Worse - cereal killers!

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That’s “cereal criminals”.

The funny thing is that these deeds (if in mint condition) are worth a tidy sum. Figures of $40 are quoted and I believe I read somewhere up to $80.
I wonder if this idea spawned pixel marketing?
For others interested in the Klondike Big Inch Land Co. this article is a hoot:

Similarly, this reminds me of the ads I’ve started seeing on Facebook offering to sell me 1sqft of land in Scotland and a certificate naming me a Lord. The ads explain that this is a thing you can entitle yourself if you own land in Scotland.

See also: which will ordain you as a Dudeist Preist (which is free) but offers to sell you a fancy printed certificate.

Also also: which will net you a honorary degree (again for free) with the option to purchase a printed Diploma.


Cards Against Humanity did a similar stunt back in 2015; They bought (the ruins of) a castle, and sold “King for 3 minutes” rights, with the proceeds going to various charities. (along with buying the run time for the company that prints their cards so the company’s staff could have an actual vacation.)

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