AHS Blog  |  49 History

The Chisna Mining and Improvement Company

Date Posted: December 26, 2013       Categories: 49 History
Editor’s note: The following is excerpted from Hazelet’s Journal, a new book by George Cheever Hazelet and John Clark previously mentioned here on this blog.

“The Chisna Mining and Imp. Company, of which G. C. Hazelet is manager, and A. J. Meals is superintendent, has expended in the last two years one hundred thousand dollars in machinery, supplies, etc., besides the labor of twenty-five men in opening their property. This property lies well up towards the head waters of the Copper River, on a creek called Chisna, and is about 225 miles almost due north from Valdez. Messrs. Hazelet and Meals went in with the rush of 1898 to the Copper River country, reaching what is now the town of Valdez the first March of that year.
“They had with them a two year’s supply of provisions and at once set out over the glacier, transporting their supplies on hand sleds to the foot of the Klutena or Abercrormbie lake, reaching that point on the first day of May. In company with A. H. McNeer of West Virginia they build a boat at this point and proceeded down the Klutena river to its junction with the Copper, where is now located the pretty little town of Copper Center….

“To Messrs. Hazelet and Meals is due the credit of discovering the Chistochina ‘diggings’ and their company has done more towards developing the country than any other similar organization.” (A Guide for Alaska Miners, Settlers and Tourist, 1902)

The Chisna Mining and Improvement Co., a.k.a. the Hazelet-Meals Party, c. 1900.

Diston at the “Nozzle”, c. 1900. Hazelet and Meals were among the first to use hydraulic mining in Alaska.

Guided by the Light

Date Posted: December 22, 2013       Categories: 49 History
Editor’s note: This essay was written a few years ago by AHS President Katie Ringsmuth and is being republished here as a special solstice / holiday greeting to the readers of this blog. Happy Holidays from AHS!
By Katie Ringsmuth
To celebrate winter solstice this year, Eric, Ben, Tom and I joined several of our Eagle River neighbors for a “Lantern Walk,” through the boreal forest at the Nature Center. Instead of the bone-chilling coldness of 10 below we experienced last year, on this night a Chinook windstorm brewing somewhere out in the Pacific blew into Prince William Sound, over the Chugach Mountains, and down the river valley, causing the primordial cottonwood, birch, and spruce trees to bend and screech furiously. Torch lights, along with our homemade lanterns, fought gallantly against the hostile gusts, but the windy darkness greedily consumed the light. Our guides instructed us to walk silently and in peace through the void, to forget the hustle and bustle of the past and the daunting tasks looming in the future. To simply be. Indeed, with restless five-year-old Ben and napless two-year-old Tom, this night was bound to be anything but silent. Eric held my hand valiantly, giving it a hopeful squeeze. For he understood that the goal of serenity for his always stressed out wife was highly optimistic. Like the forest itself, I simply felt old.

As a historian and mother I am both a dweller in the past and a worrier about the future. Each Christmas it seems as if winter darkness seeps deeper into my world, affecting everything around me, even my own children. My blue-eyed Tom is apparently developing a dark sense of humor: his favorite character in the Lion King is Scar, he was Darth Vader for Halloween, and his beloved Christmas show this year is the Grinch. Ben’s entry into public school this fall has provoked not one but two requests to know whether I am Ben’s mom or his grandma. Although the aim of the Lantern Walk was to embrace the present, my eyes kept darting toward the gnarled woods for apparitions. I half expected Scrooge’s ghosts of Christmas Past and Christmas Future to appear and fly me away because of my darkening views.
Maybe it’s the historian in me, but as our feet slid down the icy, illuminated trail my thoughts drifted deeper into the ancient woods. Like the forest, and me, I suppose, Christmas is old—and dark. The Old English word for Christmas, Cristes Maesse—the Mass of Christ—dates back to 1038. But rituals celebrating the darkest days of winter predate the birth of Jesus by thousands of years. The Mesopotamians spent 12 days in winter celebrating their god, Marduk, who they believed battled the “Monsters of Chaos” (something, I think, most parents can relate). Eric’s ancestors, the Scandinavians, rejoiced during the Yuletide, which recognized the return of the sun. On December 21, the Norse burnt a Yule Log, believing that each spark meant new life. They feasted on their remaining livestock, and to remind them of spring’s return, hung apples on trees. Northern Europeans honored the spruce tree, for it represented life at time when the Little Ice Age held the world in a frozen, deathly grip. My ancestors signaled the start of winter with a strange Celtic festival that combined traditions of Halloween and New Year’s Eve called Samhain. Souls and spirits from the past rose from the dead on Samhain Night, while prophets shared the promise of the future with eager Irish youth. The ancient Celts chose to celebrate Samhain sometime between summer and winter, during an interval that they believed existed outside of ordinary time, where the past and the future, lightness and darkness, merged.
The Romans celebrated the winter solstice honoring their many gods during lively festivals, including the rambunctious Saturnalia. They also celebrated Juvenilia, the feast honoring Roman children, as well as the birth of Mithra, the god of the unconquerable sun, born on December 25. Here in Alaska, the tradition of “Starring” celebrates the journey of the magi who, by following the Christmas Star, found another infant born likely in the spring, but whose birthday is also celebrated on December 25. The Russians brought the ritual of Starring to Russian-America in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Alaska Natives, who were folded into the Orthodox Church, embraced the tradition, which is now considered a traditional Alaska custom. And, of course, it was Raven, born of a virgin birth, who, during a time when the earth was covered in darkness, stole the sun from a powerful chief in order to shed the world and heavens in light. That is why, instead of an angel or star, a black, hairy Raven sits atop our Christmas tree.
My ponderings of past solstices traditions and our ancestors’ universal reliance on—and hope for—the future, reminded me that History is old, but Life is not. Feeling lighter both inside and out, I conceded that my kids were neither silent nor very serene that solstice night, but they certainly were living in the present. When we arrived at the bonfire, Eric continued to hold my hand. In the warmth of the burning spruce logs my dim thoughts began to focus on my boys, whose happy faces glowed as they sang carols and ate cookies. Like our ancestors, I saw each blazing ember, torch, and lantern as a hopeful wish for a happy future.
On the way home, we sang Tom’s favorite song from the Grinch: “Welcome Christmas while we stand/Heart to hear and hand in hand/Christmas day will always be/Just so long as we have we.”
Perhaps we need the darkness to appreciate that light. Just as we need the wax and the wane of the moon, the ebb and flow of the tide, the secular and the spiritual, the material and the mystic, and the dread and the delight of winter. I suppose that’s why tales of Scrooge, the Grinch—even Darth Vader—are so appealing to us. They are lessons in redemption; how one goes from the dark to the light. But like the ancient Celts, Dickens understood that we also need a mixture of the past, present and future to illuminate what is important in our lives. Reminders of what came before and signs of what might be help guide us through life. Allowing us to truly appreciate what we have and with whom we share it in the present. To simply be is hard. For most of us live neither in the dark or the light. Most of us live somewhere in between.

Happy Reveling this Solstice!

End of the Aleutian Goose

Date Posted: December 20, 2013       Categories: 49 History
By Jeff Dickrell
The Grumman Goose was designed in 1937, originally to be a commuter limousine for Long Island businessmen. Technically a ‘flying boat’ as opposed to a float plane, the Goose can carry eight passengers. WWII intervened and it became a widely-used patrol and liaison craft. A total of 345 were built with production ending in 1945. With the war over, many of these sturdy little planes were used by airlines that operated island routes. They were popular in the Caribbean, Hawaii, and, of course, Alaska.
In 1947, Reeve Aleutian Airlines was born. The former bush pilot Bob Reeve saw a niche and began serving the small villages and military bases on the chain. In 1948 he brought in a couple Grumman Gooses (yes, Gooses not Geese) to service those places without runways. R.A.A. used these versatile aircraft until 1977, when they passed the torch to Peninsula Airways. PenAir used their two Grummans to fly the local routes out of Unalaska until the autumn of 2013.

Today, there are only a handful of communities in the Aleutians. Outside of Unalaska/ Dutch Harbor (pop. 4,000) are Nikolski (pop. 20), Adak (100), Atka (70), and Akutan (30 residents, 800 fish processors). All of these villages have runways except Akutan. It is Akutan that kept the Goose in business all those years. Twice a year, January and June (and again at the end of the season), the Trident fish processing company needs to get its 800 workers from Unalaska, where there is regular air service from Anchorage to its plant located on Akutan Island, some 40 miles east. The bulk of these workers, from all over the globe, were transported, eight at a time, via the Goose. When things are really hectic, PenAir would use both of their Grummans simultaneously. These two planes were the last remaining scheduled airline Gooses in the world.

In 2012, the State of Alaska began constructing an $80 million airport on the island of Akun, four miles from the community of Akutan. Getting to the village from the new airport requires a $100 four-passenger helicopter ride. With the cessation of the sea-plane service, PenAir decided to sell -off its two Gooses. So now, for the first time in 65 years, the Aleutian residents no longer gaze up to see their own little piece of flying history.

Alaska Canneries Resource Guide from the Anchorage Museum

Date Posted: December 18, 2013       Categories: 49 History
By Sara Piasecki
Earlier this year, when the Alaska Association for Historic Preservation announced the state’s Ten Most Endangered Historic Properties for 2013, they included “Historic Canneries (Statewide)” as location number 10. Responding to this call, the Bob and Evangeline Atwood Alaska Resource Center of the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center tasked its summer interns with creating a guide to historic photographs of Alaskan canneries held in the Museum’s archives. The resulting 16-page document has already been updated three times since September, with new collections recently deposited by donors. While the list is not comprehensive (both new and older archival collections are being described all the time), it is a great place for researchers to start when looking for historic images of canneries. The most recent version of the guide is available on the Museum’s website or via email by contacting Photo Archivist Sara Piasecki at spiasecki@anchoragemuseum.org.
The complete text of the Alaskan Canneries Resource Guide (updated 12/11/13) is included below:
Alaska Engineering Commission Collection, AEC
This sub-series from the Alaska Railroad Collection (B1979.002) has over 1000 images, dating from 1924-1979. There is one photograph of men processing and packing salmon and halibut for Alaska Engineering Commission stores near Anchorage, Alaska on July 30, 1918.
  • .h78
Crary-Henderson Collection, B1962.001
The Crary-Henderson Collection consists of over 3000 photographs and negatives which are primarily of Valdez, the Copper River Valley, and surrounding mining and railroad operations dating from the early 1900s through the 1930s. This collection contains six images pertaining to canneries. Four of the pictures are unidentified, though one is probably from Valdez due to the collection scope. Two photographs have been identified to be from Cordova.
  • .230 (Cordova), .707, .920, .994, .1093, .2791 (Cordova, below)
Crary-Henderson Collection, B1962.001A
This addition to the Crary-Henderson collection contains two cannery photographs taken in Eyak. Both photographs are of the same view, just with different angles.
  • .127, .128
John Urban Collection, B1964.001
The John Urban Collection consists of 842 photographs and postcards primarily of Anchorage and the Copper River & Northwestern Railroads, but also of communities around the state and date from the early to mid 1900s. This collection holds two indentified photographs of canneries. One shows [W.] J. Imlach Packing Co. in Port Benny, and the other shows Carlisle Packing Co., in Cordova.
  • .316 ([W.] J. Imlach Packing Co.), .320 (Carlisle Packing Co.)
Whittington Photographs, B1965.004
The Whittington collection consists primarily of photos of a snow slide in 1920,
and of a train stalled and packed-in as a result of that snow slide. Of the 67 photographs, there are two of canneries. One has been identified as the McKonehey Cannery in Kodiak, while the second photograph does not contain any information.
  • .47 (McKonehey Cannery), .67
CIHS Sundberg, B1967.013
The Sundberg collection consists of scenic photographs of many different Alaskan towns. The towns depicted in the collection include Juneau, Cape Prince of Wales, Dawson, Flat City, Katalla, Kasaan, Ketchikan, Nome, Sitka, and Valdez. This collection contains only one photograph of a cannery that has not been officially identified. Written on the photograph is: “Crab Bay Prince William Sound? Port Ashton?”
  • .17
Eide Collection , B1970.028
The Eide Collection consists of 378 photographs. The photographs are black and white
and include images of Alaska between the 1910s and 1940s. There is one photograph in this collection that features a cannery. The photograph was taken sometime in the 1940s and depicts a low-tide in Anchorage with a cannery in the distance.
  • .65
Minnesota Historical, B1970.073
The Minnesota Historical Collection consists of 144 black and white photographs and 24 negatives. The images are primarily of Southeast Alaska and the Nome area between 1899 and 1901.This collection includes one photograph of the cannery in Metlakatla (Southeast Alaska).
  • .34

Alice Butler Photograph Collection, B1971.071
This collection holds 94 photographs from various locations in Alaska. The date ranges for the photographs are 1905-1940. There is one undated photograph of the Kasaan Cannery in this collection.
  • .75
Dorothy L. Surgenor Collection, B1972.032
The Dorothy L. Surgenor Collection consists of 317 photographs and approximately 100 negatives of Kennicott, Alaska during the years of 1923 to 1925. The majority of the images show the town and people of Kennicott, as well as, other towns in Alaska, including McCarthy, Valdez, and Juneau. This collection holds one photograph of a cannery on Latouche Island.
  • .307
Reid Collection, B1973.054
The Reid Collection contains 30 photographs, mostly of Ketchikan. There are three photographs of canneries in the collection. One shows a wharf in Ketchikan, with perhaps a cannery. The second photograph shows the Ward Cove Cannery. The third photograph depicts the Deep Sea Salmon Co. cannery in Port Althorp.
  • .4 (Ketchikan), .20 (Ward Cove), .25 (Port Althorp)
Charles Weller Collection, B1974.040
This collection consists of 149 photographs of Alaska. There are five photographs relating to canneries. The first photograph shows Emard, Sonnecke, and General Fish Co. in Anchorage, in the distance, dated 1937. The second photograph depicts boats tied up at the Emard Cannery dock in 1938. The third photograph shows Emard Cannery boats waiting to go out and fish in 1938. The fourth photograph’s caption states the building shown in the picture is the Sonnecke Cannery, though the sign in the pictures says “General Fish Co., Inc.,” dated 1937. The fifth photograph shows a small, abandoned cannery south of Seward in 1937.
  • .32 (Anchorage), .33 (Emard Cannery dock), .39 (Emard Cannery boats), .46 (Sonnecke Cannery/Genreal Fish Co. Inc.), .117 (south of Seward)
Ickes Collection, B1975.175
Harold LeClair Ickes was the Secretary of the Interior between 1933 and 1946, under Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration. The Ickes Collection consists of approximately 686 images and several hundred negatives. The photographs cover Ickes’ trip to Alaska in 1938. This large collection holds eighteen photographs of canneries. Locations include: Klawock, Annette Island and Kasaan. Canneries identified include: Libby’s Cannery, Annette Islands Canning Company, and Kasaan Cannery.
  • .624 (Klawock), .625 (Libby’s Cannery), .652(Annette Islands Canning Company), .653 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .655 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .656 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .657 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .658 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .659 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .660 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .661 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .662 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .663 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .664 (Annette Islands Canning Company), .665 (Annette Islands Canning Company, below), .675 (Kasaan Cannery), .676 (Kasaan Cannery) 

Sidney Hamilton Photograph Collection, B1976.082
The majority of the photographs contained in the Sidney Hamilton Collection depict the city of Anchorage and the Cook Inlet area from the mid 1940s to the mid 1950s. Also included are images of various lodges and recreation areas and other towns such as Juneau, Seward, Curry, and Fairbanks. There is one photograph in this collection of a cannery and harbor area in Juneau.
  • .246x
B. Leonard Collection, B1977.002
The B. Leonard collection holds 58 photographs, mostly of King Cove, Alaska, which is located in the Aleutian Islands. This collection features photographs of the cannery in King Cove and Excursion Inlet, which is located in Southeast Alaska.
  • .1 (King Cove), .22 (King Cove), .44 (Excursion Inlet), .45 (King Cove)
Lawver Collection, B1978.125
This collection consists of 19 photographs taken from an album collected by Harry Leypoldt, a member of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey crew in lower Cook Inlet and the Southeast, 1912-1914. There is one unidentified and undated black and white photograph in this collection.
  • .5
FIC Photos, B1979.001
This collection of photographs was found in the museum archives. There is no paperwork for the collection. This collection contains three possible photographs of canneries. The first and third photographs are bird’s-eye views of Seldovia, possibly featuring a cannery. The second photograph (and a 4×5 negative) shows a cannery in Uyak, Kodiak.
  • .5b (Seldovia), .34 (Uyak), .55 (Seldovia)
Collyer Photograph Collection, B1980.028
The Collyer Photograph Collection consists of 23 black and white photographs taken in 1916. There are two photographs in this collection of a salmon cannery in Yakutat.
  • .005, .006
Latouche Collection, B1980.029
This collection consists of 400 photographs and 30 negatives of Latouche Island, Alaska, taken sometime between 1910-1920. The photo album contains seven photographs related to canneries. Most of the images are unidentified canneries, as well as a few images of fishing boats docked at a cannery dock, and one of a pallet of canned salmon with a porcupine sitting on top.
  • .6, .48, .53, .153, .167, .174, .285
Dorothy Stauter Collection, B1980.041
In the Dorothy Stauter Collection there are 152 photographs. Within those photographs, there is one undated photograph of the Drier Bay Salmon Packing House. Other photographs in the collection have been dated 1905-1933.
  • .40
Ladic Photograph Collection, B1980.057
This collection contains 33 black and white photographs of the Inside Passage, dated circa 1916. The photographs were taken while the photographer was aboard the S.S. Jefferson traveling from Seattle to Anchorage. This collection holds one photograph of the Taku Cannery.
  • .05
Dane Photograph Collection, B1980.062
The Dane Photograph Collection consists of 23 photographs and postcards mostly of Wrangell, Unalaska, St. Paul and the White Pass and Yukon Railroad. There are two photographs of the inside of an indentified cannery. The first photograph shows “feeding fish into an iron chink.” The second photograph shows tables full of cans inside a cannery. 
  • .3, .4
Bridgeman Postcard Collection, B1980.81
This collection was donated in 1980 and contains 29 historical postcards and photographs, mostly of the Southeast, some of Cook Inlet and two of Canadian scenes. There is one photograph of cannery ships amid ice in Bristol Bay.
  • .17
Alex Family Photograph Collection, B1980.098
This collection was donated in 1980 and contains photographs of the Alex Family of Eklutna Village. There is one photograph of what appears to be a cannery with boats tied up to a dock. No other information appears on the photograph.
  • .44
Hotchkiss, B1981.020
The Hotchkiss Collection consists of 164 photographs and 23 negatives of mostly Southeast Alaska, but also of Fairbanks, Anchorage, the White Pass and Yukon Railroad, Prince Rupert, B.C. and Kennewick, Washington. There are two photographs of canneries in this collection; one in Wrangell and one in Sitka.
  • .23 (Wrangell), .96 (Sitka)
Robert Wheatley Collection, B1982.052
This collection consists of 442 photographs and 112 negatives from around Alaska, taken from 1906 to 1910. There are four small photographs of canneries in this collection. The first two show boats and a cannery near Petersburg. The third photograph is of a cannery in Uyak. The fourth photograph shows the Chignik Alaska Salmon Cannery, which was taken from the water.
  • .23 & .24 (Petersburg), .333(Uyak), .339 (Chignik)
Elsner Collection, B1982.135
This collection consists of 28 photographs, mostly taken in the Copper River Valley area, most likely from 1900-1920. There are two photographs of different unidentified canneries. Neither photo is dated, nor has a location listed.
            .20, .21
Howard Hansen Collection, B1982.181
This collection was donated in 2010 and contains duplicate photographs from another collection. In this collection there is one undated photo of the cannery in Portlock, Alaska; one of a bird’s-eye view of Wrangell; and another with a caption that reads “Red and King Salmon at New England Packing Co. Dock.” The salmon are still in the boat as it is tied to the dock.
  • .42 (Portlock), .52 (Wrangell), .57 (Red and King Salmon)
Ward Wells Collection, 1983.091
The Stock Series in the robust Ward Wells Collection contains 33,600 black and white images. The photographs were taken from 1946-1982, with those after 1947 dealing mainly with Anchorage. There are five photographs of canneries: one of salmon being packaged in Bristol Bay, one possibly of Libby’s Cannery, two of salmon being unloaded off a boat into a cannery in Bristol Bay, and a cannery assembly line in Bristol Bay.
  • 156.R08 (packaging), 156.R09 (Libby’s Cannery), 156.R11 (unloading salmon), 156.R22 (Bristol Bay), 156.R23 (unloading salmon, below)

Pyatt-Laurence Collection, B1983.146
This collection consists of 342 photographic prints, including some postcards, and 187 nitrate negatives depicting Alaskan scenes, primarily in and around Anchorage, in 1915 and 1916. There are four photographs of canneries in this collection. The first has not been identified, but is possibly from Ship Creek due to nearby photographs. The second photograph is also unidentified, but is possibly from the Southeast. The third has been identified as Cordova, and the fourth has been identified as Seldovia.
  • .122 (Ship Creek?), .156 (Southeast), .197 (Cordova), .209 (Seldovia)
Robert Culver Collection, B1984.081
The Robert Culver Collection contains 104 photographs from 1917-1920, with most of the photographs being of Anchorage or the Alaska Railroad. There is one photograph that shows a portion of the cannery at Port Althorp, with barrels and nets on the dock.
  • .57
Wien Collection, B1985.027
There are thirty cannery-related photographs in this very large collection. Locations and canneries identified include: Eyak, Naknek, Bristol Bay, Wards Cove Packing Co., and Columbia Rivers’ Packers’ Association. The photographs are dated 1954.
  • .987 (Eyak), .990 (Naknek), .991 (Naknek), .995 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .998 (Naknek), .999 (Bristol Bay), .1000 (Bristol Bay), .1001 (Naknek), .1002 (Naknek), .1003 (Naknek), .1004 (Wards Cove Packing Co., Naknek), .1006 (Naknek), .1007 (Naknek), .1008 (Naknek), .1009 (Naknek), .1010 (Naknek), .1011 (Naknek), .1012 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1013 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1014 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1015 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1016 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1017 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1018 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1019 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1020 (Naknek), .1021 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1022 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1023 (C.R.P.A., Naknek), .1026 (C.R.P.A., Naknek)
Will Streeter Collection, B1985.061
In this collection, there are about 80-100 black and white photographs of the Inside Passage and Fairbanks from 1916-1918. There is one photograph of an unidentified cannery with a surrounding town.
  • .7
Romig Collection, B1985.063
Dr. Joseph Herman Romig moved to Bethel in the 1890s to serve as a missionary doctor after medical school. Throughout the decades, Dr. Romig lived in various parts of the state and became known as the “Dog Team Doctor.” At one point, Dr. Romig worked as a physician for a cannery in Nushagak, Bristrol Bay. In Album 3 of this collection there is a photograph of the cannery in Seldovia. There is no date on the photo, but other photos nearby read the late 1920s.
  • .362
W.T. Roberts Album, B1987.056
This album contains 472 photographs, most likely taken from 1920-1929, and there are eight photographs of Alaskan canneries. Locations identified include: Douglas, Cordova, Valdez and Latouche Island. There is also a photograph of a floating cannery.
  • .130 (Douglas), .200 (Cordova), .202 (Cordova), .203 (Cordova), .205 (floating cannery), .214 (Cordova), .284 (Valdez), .303 (Latouche Island)
Arnold Nelsen Collection, B1987.071
This collection consists of 49 photographs, mostly of the Alaska Railroad and of canneries. In the collection, there are nine photographs and three canned salmon labels that were used to write a letter on, dated 1944. Locations and canneries identified are: Port Althorp, Koggiung, Carlisle Packing Co., and Libby’s Cannery. The photographs show the canneries, fishing boats filled with fish, a cannery conveyor belt in action, and a bin with men standing in salmon up to their knees.
  • .9 (Port Althorp), .10 (Port Althorp), .13 (conveyor belt), .14 (Carlisle Packing Co.), .15 (Port Althorp), .16 (Libby’s Cannery), .17 (Libby’s Cannery), .18 (Libby’s Cannery), .19 (no information), .55abc (salmon can letter) 
Evelyn Lessel Postcard Collection, B1987.086
This small collection consists of 23 postcards dated 1908-1911. There are seven photographs of related to canneries. The first three photographs show the cannery in Chignik, Alaska. The photographs are undated and each shows a different angle of the cannery. Three photographs are of the shipwreck of the cannery ship Jabez Howes in Chignik. And the last photograph shows a cannery ship loading cans in Chignik.
  • .2-.4 (Chignik), .5-.7 (Jabez Howes), .8 (cannery ship)
Ingalls Collection, B1988.003
The Ingalls collection contains 250 postcards of various locations in Alaska and Canada. Two photographs of the cannery in Sitkoh Bay, Alaska can be found in this collection. There is also a photograph of stacks of cans that say Tklinket Packing Co., Funter Bay, Alaska. The photograph is dated August, 1907.
  • .209 (Sitkoh Bay), .219 (Sitkoh Bay), .223 (Tklinket Packing Co.)
A.R. Sessions Collection, B1988.052
The A.R. Sessions Collection consists of 161 photographs, mostly of the Alaska Railroad, as Arthur Richard Sessions worked for them for almost 50 years. The photographs are dated 1920s-1960s. There is one photograph of the San Wan Fish Company in Seward in this collection.
  • .108
Lu Liston Collection, B1989.016
This large collection is comprised of approximately 6500 negatives, 650 prints and miscellaneous slides, dating 1930-1965. The collection mostly documents the business and daily life in Anchorage, and features photographers Sydney Laurence, Robert Bragaw, Denny Hewitt, and Sidney Hamilton. There are dozens of photographs of canneries around Alaska in this collection.
  • .362 (cannery and dock, Anchorage or Tenakee?), .404.1-.3 (Emard’s Cannery), .537.1 – (Anchorage), .537.2 – No. 2. (Salmon Cannery, Anchorage), .537.3 (Anchorage Dock & Cannery) .634 (Port O’Brien Cannery), .635 (Port Althorp Cannery) .708.1-15 (Cannery operations and workers), 791.5 (Alaska Packers’ Association boats, Bristol Bay), .1292.1-2 (Emard’s Cannery), .1292.3 (salmon cannery, Anchorage), 1292.5 (salmon cannery, Anchorage), 1391.1 (Bristol Bay), .1410 (Diamond N.N. Cannery, Bristol Bay), .1544.1-2 (Northwestern Fisheries Co. cannery), .1663, .1882.1-27 (probably Libby, McNeill, & Libby cannery)
Steve McCutcheon Collection, B1990.014.5
This incredibly large collection contains 181,532 various types of images, taken between 1946 and 1990. The collection holds twenty cannery-related photographs. Locations and canneries identified include: Petersburg, Dillingham, Haines, Mud Bay, Kasaan, Kenai, Ketchikan, Pacific American Fisheries Cannery, Scandinavian Slough, and Halibut & Fish Biz.
  • AKNative.031.002 (Petersburg), TV.046.008 (Dillingham), TV.046.029 (PAF Cannery, Dillingham), TV.046.032 (Scandinavian Slough), TV.046.034 (PAF Cannery, Dillingham), TV.046.37 (Dillingham), TV.046.038 (Dillingham), TV.046.40 (Dillingham, below), TV.046.41 (PAF Cannery, Dillingham), TV.046.042 (Dillingham), TV.046.046 (Dillingham), TV.068.022 (Haines), TV.068.023 (Mud Bay), TV.068.034 (Mud Bay), TV.068.084 (Haines), TV.086.001 (Kasaan), TV.089.074 (Kenai), TV.089.119.1A (Kenai), TV.094.327.01A (Halibut & Fish Biz, Ketchikan), TV.094.327.038 (Halibut & Fish Biz, Ketchikan)

Simonson, B1991.009
The Simonson Collection is comprised mostly of black and white photographs of the Cook Inlet region, dated 1900-1920. There are eleven photographs of multiple locations and canneries. Two of the photographs show the shipwreck of the cannery ship Jabez Howes. Three photographs show the cannery in Chignik, dated 1910. Two photographs show the canneries Northwestern Fisheries Company, dated 1913, and Lebbep Cannery, dated 1909, in Kenai. Two photographs show Ketchikan. There is one photograph of Nushaguk, Alaska, and the final photograph is of Tim Odale at steering wheel of the cannery boat (The North Cape), dated 1920.
  • B1991.009.32ab (shipwreck), .47 (Chignik), .48 (Chignik), .50 (Chignik), .94 (Northwestern Fisheries Company), .96 (Lebbep Cannery), .103 (Ketchikan), .104 (Ketichikan), 113 (Nushaguk), .117 (Tim Odale)
Martin Collection, B1992.024
Taken while aboard the S.S. Admiral Farragut during a voyage in 1927, this photo album contains 93 photographs of Alaska. There is one photograph of a salmon cannery in Petersburg, dated 1927. In the photograph, pallets of cans can be seen on the dock.
  • .23
John D. (Jack) Urban Collection, B1995.019
This collection consists of 772 photographs all taken around 1925 while Mr. Urban worked as a tourist agent for the Alaska Railroad. In this collection there are two photographs of fish being unloaded at an unidentified cannery in 1925.
  • .740, .753
Quimby, B1996.014
This photo album consists of 383 black and white photographs of Southeast Alaska, from 1923-1924. The collection has two photographs of a cannery in Sitka. The second photograph shows a building with a sign that says “Booth.”
  • .357, .363
Trip to Alaska, B1997.008
This photo album contains 260 photographs that were taken in 1926 during a trip to Alaska. There are four photographs of canneries in this collection. The first was taken in Cordova, the second and third photographs were taken in Shearwater Bay, and the fourth was taken in Kodiak.
  • .32 (Cordova), .71 (Shearwater Bay), .72 (Shearwater Bay), .98 (Kodiak)
Christian Rohlfing Collection, B1997.012
There are 38 photographs in this collection, taken from 1885-1888. One photograph in this collection shows the Naha Bay Salmon Cannery, dated 1885.
  • .12
Adolphus Greely, B1998.003
General Adolphus W. Greely served in the Civil War from 1961-1965. After the war he served in the Canadian Arctic as part of the International Polar Expedition in Barrow, from 1881-1883, and as Chief Signal Officer made five trips between 1900 and 1910 to Alaska to inspect Wamcats under construction by the Army Signal Corps.The collection has a total of 33 photographs, and two of those are of canneries. The first photograph shows the Petersburg Cannery and the second shows the Touke Salmon Cannery in Hoggart Bay.
  • .23 (Petersburg), .32 (Touke Salmon Cannery)

Carl C. (Dick) Tousley, B1998.017
In this collection there are six photo albums containing 1113 photographs of Alaska, Wyoming, Montana and Washington, from about 1915-1925. This collection holds six photographs of canneries. Locations and canneries identified include: Chignik, Cordova, Kodiak, Afognak, Ouzinkie Cannery, K.F. Cos. Cannery and C.R. Packing Co.
  • .495 (C.R. Packing Co., Chignik), .599 (Ouzinkie Cannery, Afognak), .600 (Ouzinkie Cannery, Afognak, above), .693 (K.F. Cos. Cannery, Kodiak), .703 (Cordova)
Candy Waugaman Collection, B1998.025
This collection consists of photographs from World War II, dating from 1940-1945. This is a largely-unprocessed collection with unnumbered photographs of canneries in envelope 5 and album 17.
Crusey Postcard Collection, B1999.013
There are about 50 postcards in this collection, with six postcards featuring canneries: 2 illustrated postcards of Fort Wrangell and Skagway, and four photographs of Ketchikan and Kodiak.
  • .2 (Fort Wrangell), .6 (Skagway), .40 (Ketchikan), .43 (Ketchikan), .45 (Ketchikan), .48 (Kodiak)
Hilscher Collection, B1999.014
The Hilscher Collection has approximately 300 photographs taken by Herb and Miriam Hilscher when he was working for the king crab industry, statehood, and the constitutional convention. There are nine photographs of canneries. The first photograph has the caption: “Canneries at Ocean Dock.” The second is a postcard of Cordova. The third photograph is of Dillingham before 1952. The fourth is of red salmon arriving at APA Cannery in Karluk. The last four are small pictures of the same cannery, with no information on the location or date.
  • .1323 (Canneries at Ocean Dock), .1324 (Cordova postcard), .1335 (Dillingham), .1392 (APA Cannery, Karluk), .1176 (four small photographs of canneries)

Take Action to Protect Historic, Archaeological, and Cultural Resources

Date Posted: December 17, 2013       Categories: 49 History
Editor’s note: The following letter was sent earlier this month by AHS Vice President Anjuli Grantham to Gary Knell and David Lyle, the CEOs of National Geographic Society and National Geographic Channels, respectively. Please read the letter and consider signing an online petition asking National Geographic and Spike TV networks to stop airing (or at least add a statement of caution to) the show “Diggers.” As Grantham’s letter points out, the show encourages amateur treasure hunters to disturb and potentially loot historic and archaeological sites. The petition is available here: www.change.org/petitions/the-national-geographic-channel-the-travel-channel-spike-tv-stop-airing-their-digger-programs-3
Dear Mr. Lyle:
I am writing on behalf of the Alaska Historical Society’s Board of Directors. We are a board comprised of historians, archivists, anthropologists, and educators, and similar to National Geographic, we are dedicated to advancing both scholarship about, and stewardship towards, our shared heritage.
It is due to the National Geographic Society’s history of espousing the values of scholarship and stewardship that we are dismayed by the show, Diggers. We understand that the show’s producers have consulted with archaeologists, yet nonetheless, the take away message for viewers is that metal detecting is a non-destructive activity. This is not the case, and this is not in line with the National Geographic’s own history. National Geographic is an organization trusted for its professional ethics. In fact, National Geographic expeditions have uncovered rich archaeological finds and introduced the public to these discoveries in a manner that encourages both stewardship and respect. As a result, we contend that Diggers is not within the ethos of the National Geographic brand.
Without a serious effort to educate viewers about the legal, scientific, and ethical repercussions of amateur digging, the show is training individuals to vandalize and ransack our cultural heritage. For these reasons, the board of directors of the Alaska Historical Society asks that National Geographic include a warning at the beginning and end of each show, telling viewers about the negative consequences of metal detecting. Moreover, we ask that you use Diggersas an opportunity to educate viewers about cultural resource management and the laws and practices that professionals adhere to. This way, viewers will understand that it is illegal to dig on public land and that it causes irreparable damage if done without the guidance of a trained archaeologist.
Please work to ensure the protection and measured study of cultural and historic sites rather than their destruction. We encourage you to continue to advance the value of stewardship by including statements against looting and vandalism in each show.
Anjuli Grantham
Vice President

Alaska Historical Society Board of Directors