Gene Sloan, USA Today. 11:29 a.m. EDT September 6, 2013

LYNN CANAL, Alaska — The S.S. Legacy is sailing near the Gold Rush town of Skagway when Danny McSwain swaggers into the Grand Salon. Dressed like an 1890s scofflaw, with a six-shooter on his waist, he’s not the typical fleece-wearing passenger. Nor is the next person to enter the lounge: Sgt. William Sharpe of the North-West Mounted Police.

“Ladies and gentlemen: Do not be alarmed, (but) there is a criminal here among you,” Sharpe shouts theatrically, his gun drawn. “Please do not move while I search the premises.”

Scanning the passengers, Sharpe acknowledges the many “ruffians, thugs and card sharps” he sees before him. Then he eyes McSwain at the bar and announces he’s under arrest, for murder. But as he fumbles with his handcuffs, McSwain bolts down a hallway toward the back of the ship and escapes.

Call it cruising to the Alaska of the 1890s. The historical vignette starring hired actors is just one of many that play out across the 88-passenger Un-Cruise Adventures vessel as it sails in the Gold Rush country of Southeast Alaska.

The “Gold Rush Legacy” voyage is one of the first of Un-Cruise’s new line of Heritage Adventures in the region, which layer living history on top of a traditional small-ship exploration of the Inside Passage — a glacier-carved, wildlife-filled land of bays and fjords, snow-topped mountains and endless forests…

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