and wills are filed with the Alaska Court System. You can also search
for newer wills
and probates here. Older probates for some areas can be found here.
Or you may contact the local Clerk of Court at:
Kotzebue, AK 99752-0317
Location: 605 3rd Avenue
Smith, Kotzebue Recorder
1648 S. Cushman St., #201
Fairbanks, AK 99701-6206
Recording District Covers:
Ambler * Bornite * Callahan S.C. * Ebeokvik * Gabolio * Hunt River S.C.
* Kalla * Kiana * Kivalina * Kobuk * Kotzebue * Lukes Cabin * Nauyoaruk
* Nilik * Noatak * Noatak S.C. * Noorvik * Okok Point * Pitkim S.C. * Reindeer
Station * Riley Jims Cabin * Selawik * Sheshalik * Shungnak * Shungnak Village
* Talikoot (Aband) * Tikizat * Ungayookot * Utonok
HISTORY CENTER (MORMON)
Family History Center
5th St & Alice St
/ MESSAGE BOARDS
queries, bios, bible records, deeds, obits, pensions, and wills here. These
are a valuable resource and all genealogists need to learn how to use them.
163 Lagoon Street
P.O. Box 1110
Kotzebue, Alaska 99752
your family name through the Ancestry.com surname boards
VILLAGES & POPULATED PLACES
Source: USGS and Wikipedia
is a city in Northwest Arctic Borough, Alaska, United States. At the 2000
census the population was 309. The city is located in the large Inupiaq
language speaking region of Alaska, and the local dialect is known as the
Ambler dialect (related to the Shugnak dialect). As of 1999, over 91% of
the community speaks and understands the language (Kraus, 1999), with many
young children actively learning the language in school.
Ambler is located on the north bank of the Kobuk River, near the confluence
of the Ambler and the Kobuk Rivers. It lies 45 miles north of the Arctic
Circle. It is 138 miles northeast of Kotzebue, 30 miles northwest of northwest
of Kobuk and 30 miles downriver from Shungnak. Ambler is located in the
Kotzebue Recording District.
The community was named for a tributary of the Kobuk River, which was named
for Dr.James M. Ambler, who died of starvation after his ship was trapped
in the Arctic ice in 1881. Ambler was permanently settled in 1958 when people
from Shungnak and Kobuk moved upstream because of the variety of fish, wild
game and spruce trees in the area. An archaeological site is located nearby
at Onion Portage. A post office was established in 1963. The City was incorporated
Ambler's major means of transportation are by barge, plane, small boat and
snowmachine. There are no roads linking the City to other parts of the state.
Cash employment is limited to the school, City, clinic, and local stores,
and some mining occurs. Five residents hold commercial fishing permits.
Subsistence is a major part of the local economy. Chum salmon and caribou
are the most important food sources. Freshwater fish, moose, bear, and berries
are also harvested. Birch baskets, fur pelts, and jade, quartz, bone and
ivory carvings are sold in gift shops throughout the state. The community
is interested in developing a lapidary facility for local artisans
information except that it is located on USGS Ambler River A-2 map.
village and trading post reported by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in 1914.
Its population was 52 in 1920; 104 in 1930; and 115 in 1940. The Buckland
post office was established here in 1935 and discontinued about 1941. The
present Buckland post office is located at Elephant Point. Located on Buckland
River, 54 mi. N of Haycock
Buckland is located on the west bank of the Buckland River, about 75 miles
southeast of Kotzebue. Buckland is located in the Cape Nome Recording District.
Temperatures range from -60 to the 85 °F. Annual precipitation averages
9 inches, and annual snowfall averages 40 inches. Crosswinds can restrict
flying during the winter.
The residents have moved from one site to another along the river at least
five times in recent memory, to places known as Elephant Point, Old Buckland,
and New Site. The presence of many fossil finds at Elephant Point indicate
prehistoric occupation of the area. The Inupiaq people depend on reindeer,
beluga whale, and seal for survival. The city government was incorporated
is an Inupiat village, and subsistence activities are an important focus
of the economy. The sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village.
Residents depend on a subsistence lifestyle for most food sources. Employment
is primarily with the school, city, health clinic, and stores. Some mining
Water is pumped from Buckland River, treated in the washeteria building,
and stored in a 100,000-gallon tank. Some residents have water delivered
to home tanks, but most haul their own water. The city pumps flush/haul
waste tanks or hauls honeybuckets to the sewage lagoon. A flush/haul system
has been problematic on the south side of town, and it sometimes freezes
and fails during the winter. Only 8 homes and the school have functioning
plumbing; 74 homes are not served. Individuals dispose of refuse in dumpsters,
which are hauled to the landfill.
Buckland's major means of transportation are plane, small boat, barge,
and snowmachine; there are no roads outside of the village. Crowley Marine
barges in fuel, and various lighterage companies deliver cargo and supplies
camp established about 1901-2 and named for Candle Creek; published by U.S.
Geological Survey (USGS). Its population was 204 in 1910; 91 in 1920; 85
in 1930; 119 in 1939; and 105 in 1950. The Candle post office was established
Located on left bank of Kiwalik River, 54 mi. NW of Haycock, Seward Peninsula
of a mining camp; named on a 1951 U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) map. A coal
mine was opened here in 1903 and for many years supplied coal to the Candle
Creek and Fairhaven gold mining districts. Located on right bank of Kugruk
River, 29 mi. NE of Imuruk Lake
village was established in 1901 as a supply station for interior gold mining
near the historic Malemiut Eskimo village of Inmachukmiut. The name probably
comes from the schooner Abbie M. Deering, which was present in the area
at that time. A post office was located here in 1901. The inhabitants are
primarily Iñupiat Eskimo. It is located on a sandy spit on the Seward
Peninsula where the Inmachuk River flows into Kotzebue Sound, 57 mi southwest
located on Kotzebue Sound at the mouth of the Inmachuk River, 57 miles
southwest of Kotzebue. It is built on a flat sand and gravel spit 300
feet wide and a half-mile long. Deering is located in the Cape Nome Recording
District and is in the transitional climate zone, which is characterized
by long, cold winters and cool summers. The average low temperature during
January is -18 degrees Fahrenheit. The average high during July is 63
degrees Fahrenheit. Temperature extremes from a low of -60 to a high of
85 degrees Fahrenheit have been measured. Snowfall averages 36 inches,
and total precipitation averages 9 inches per year. Kotzebue Sound is
ice-free from early July until mid-October.
The village was established in 1901 as a supply station for Interior gold
mining near the historic Malemiut Eskimo village of "Inmachukmiut."
The name Deering was probably taken from the 90-ton schooner "Abbey
Deering," which was in nearby waters around 1900. The City was incorporated
The population of the village is primarily Inupiat . The people are active
in subsistence. The sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village.
Deering's economy is a mix of cash and subsistence activities. Moose,
seal and beluga whale provide most meat sources; pink salmon, tom cod,
herring, ptarmigan, rabbit and waterfowl are also utilized. The Karmun-Moto
reindeer herd of 1,400 animals provides some local employment. A number
of residents earn income from handicrafts and trapping. The village is
interested in developing a craft production facility and cultural center
to train youth in Native crafts. The school, City, Maniilaq Assoc., stores,
and an airline provide the only year-round jobs. Some mining occurs in
the Seward Peninsula's interior. Two residents hold commercial fishing
permits. The village wants to develop eco-tourism, including a 38-mile
road to Inmachuk Springs for tourists.
on a spit on S coast of Eschscholtz Bay, 44 mi. SW of Selawik
of a settlement reported in 1950 by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Recent
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) maps indicate a site with five or six buildings.
Name derived from nearby Cape Espenberg. Located on Seward Peninsula, at
mouth of Espenberg River, on Chukchi Sea, 50 mi. NW of Deering.
in 1923 on an Alaska Road Commission (ARC) map. Located on left bank Inmachuk
River, 1 mi. SW of Utica and 20 mi. NNE of Imuruk Lake, Seward Peninsula
Eskimo village visited in 1885 by Lieutenant G. M. Stoney, U.S. Navy (USN).
He wrote the name "Kallamute," i.e. "Kalla people."
Located on right bank of Kobuk River, 14 mi. E of Shungnak.
which probably obtained its permanency as a supply center for the Squirrel
River placer mines about 1909. Reported by H.M. Eakin, U.S. Geological
Survey (USGS), in 1910; was established in 1915. Population 181 in 1950.
Located on the right bank of Kobuk River, 28 mi. NW of Selawik.
Kiana is located on the north bank of the Kobuk River, 57 air miles east
of Kotzebue and is in the Kotzebue Recording District. The area encompasses
0.2 sq. miles of land and 0.0 sq. miles of water. Kiana is located in
the transitional climate zone. Temperatures average -10 to 15 during winter;
40 to 60 during summer. Temperature extremes have been recorded from -54
to 87. Snowfall averages 60 inches, with 16 inches of total precipitation
per year. The Kobuk River is navigable from the end of May to early October.
Kiana means "a place where three rivers meet." It was established
long ago as the central village of the Kobuk River Kowagmiut Inupiat.
In 1909, it became a supply center for the Squirrel River placer mines.
A post office was established in 1915. The City government was incorporated
in 1964. Prior to the formation of the Northwest Arctic Borough in 1976,
the BIA high school taught students from Noatak, Shungnak and Ambler,
who boarded with local residents. Culture: Kiana is a traditional Inupiat
village practicing a subsistence lifestyle. The sale or importation of
alcohol is banned in the village.
The economy depends on traditional subsistence activities, augmented by
a cash economy. Chum salmon, freshwater fish, moose, caribou, waterfowl
and berries are harvested. The school, City, and Maniilaq Association
provide the majority of year-round jobs. The Red Dog Mine also offers
area employment. Kiana is one of the more modern villages in the Borough,
and has three general stores. Three residents hold commercial fishing
permits; seasonal employment also includes work on river barges, BLM fire-fighting
and jade mining. There is local interest in constructing a whitefish and
turbot value-added processing plant. The City is also interested in developing
eco-tourism, primarily guided river trips to the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes.
originally located at the north end of the lagoon. Reported in 1847 by
Lieutenant L.A. Zagoskin, Imperial Russian Navy (IRN), who gave its name
as "Kivualinagmut". The village population was 87 in 1920, 99
in 1930, 98 in 1939, and 117 in 1950. The post office was established
in 1940. Located on barrier reef between Chukchi and Kivalina Lagoon,
43 mi NW of Noatak and 47 mi NW of Cape Krusenstern.
It has long been a stopping place for travelers between Arctic coastal
areas and Kotzebue Sound communities. Three bodies and artifacts were
found in 2009 representing the Ipiutak culture, a pre-Thule, non-whaling
civilization that disappeared over a millenium ago. It is the only village
in the region where people hunt the bowhead whale. The original village
was located at the north end of the Kivalina Lagoon but was relocated.
In about 1900, reindeer were brought to the area and some people were
trained as reindeer herders.
Kivalina is at the tip of an 8-mile barrier reef located between the Chukchi
Sea and Kivalina River. It lies 80 air miles northwest of Kotzebue. Kivalina
is located in the Kotzebue Recording District. The average low temperature
during January is -15 °F; the average high during July is 57 °F.
Temperature extremes have been measured from -54 to 85 °F. Snowfall
averages 57 inches, with 8.6 inches of precipitation per year. The Chukchi
Sea is ice-free and open to boat traffic from mid-June to the first of
Kivalina has long been a stopping-off place for seasonal travelers between
Arctic coastal areas and Kotzebue Sound communities. It is the only village
in the Northwest Arctic Borough region where people hunt the bowhead whale.
At one time, the village was located at the north end of the Kivalina
Lagoon. It was reported as "Kivualinagmut" in 1847 by Lt. Zagoskin
of the Russian Navy. Lt. G.M. Stoney of the U.S. Navy reported the village
as "Kuveleek" in 1885. A post office was established in 1940.
An airstrip was built in 1960, using metal mattings. Kivalina incorporated
as a city in 1969. During the 1970s, new houses, a new school, and an
electric system were constructed in the village. Prior to 1976, high school
students from Noatak would attend school in Kivalina and board with local
families. Due to severe erosion and wind-driven ice damage, the city intends
to relocate to a new site 2.5 miles away. Relocation alternatives have
been studied, and a new site has been designed and engineered.
Kivalina is a traditional Inupiat village. Subsistence activities, including
whaling, provide most food sources. Inupiaq dancing was reintroduced by
a group of young people in September of 2008. The sale or importation
of alcohol is banned in the village.
Kivalina's economy depends on subsistence practices. Bearded seal, walrus,
bowhead whale, Dolly Varden trout, tomcods, blue cods, salmon, whitefish,
and caribou are utilized. The school, city, Maniilaq Association, NANA
Regional Corporation, tribal council, airlines, and local stores provide
year-round jobs. The Red Dog Mine also offers some employment. Two residents
hold commercial fishing permits. Native carvings and jewelry are produced
from ivory and whalebones. The community is interested in developing an
Arts and Crafts Center that could be readily moved to the new city site.
Water is drawn from the Wulik River via a 3-mile surface transmission
line to a 700,000-gallon raw water tank and then to a 500,000-gallon tank,
where it is treated when it is pumped. The water lasts the community only
for a six-month period, and the washeteria is closed to the public when
the last tank is down to 12 feet, and only the school uses the water,
so it can last through May. Water is limited to 30 gallons a day for the
public during this period. Water is hauled by residents from this tank,
which can be difficult during winter, given that there are snowhills 20
to 30 feet high in the community. One-seventh of residents have tanks
which provide running water for the kitchen, but homes are not fully plumbed.
There is only a public washeteria with three showers available. The school
and clinic have individual water and sewer systems. Residents haul their
own honeybuckets to the landfill disposal wite, which has no barrier around
it and is subject to visits from wild animals, such as bears and foxes.
The seagulls and crows that forage for food at the landfill are a threat
to incoming airplanes.
village named for the Kiwalik River, reported in 1850 as "Kualiug-miut"
by Lieutenant L. A. Zagoskin, Imperial Russian Navy (IRN), and published
in 1852 on Russian Hydrographic Dept. Chart 1455. Census as "Kugalukmute,"
population 12. became a supply point for mining activities in the Candle
area. The Keewalik post office was established in 1902 and operated intermittently
until 1907. increased to 24 in 1940. Located on NE coast of Seward Peninsula,
between Spafarief Bay and Kiwalik Lagoon.
reported on a 1923 Alaska Road Commission (ARC) map. Located on Klery Creek,
at mouth of Jack Creek W of Kallarichuk Hills and 20 mi. NE of Deviation
Peak, Brooks Range
about 1899 as a supply point for the mining activities in the Cosmos Hills
to the north. It was then called Shungnak. Because the village was the
location of a trading post, school, and Friends mission, it became primarily
an Eskimo settlement by 1910. Due to river erosion the population of Shungnak
decided to relocate at a new site called "Kochuk" about 10 miles
downstream in the 1920's. The few families that remained behind, and some
who returned, renamed the village "Kobuk." The Shungnak post
office was established in 1903; the name was changed to Kobuk in 1928.
In May 1973, a flood covered the entire village.The economy of Kobuk is
based on subsistence hunting for caribou and moose. Located on right bank
of Kobuk River 7 mi. NE of Shungnak
Kobuk is located on the right bank of the Kobuk River, about 7 miles northeast
of Shungnak and 128 air miles northeast of Kotzebue. It is the smallest
village in the Northwest Arctic Borough. Kobuk is located in the Kotzebue
Recording District. Kobuk is located in the transitional climate zone.
Temperatures average -10 to 15 during winter; 40 to 65 during summer.
Temperature extremes have been recorded from -68 to 90. Snowfall averages
56 inches, with 17 inches of total precipitation per year. The Kobuk River
is navigable from the end of May through October.
Kobuk was founded in 1899 as a supply point for mining activities in the
Cosmos Hills to the north, and was then called Shungnak. A trading post,
school, and Friends Mission drew area residents to the settlement. Due
to river erosion and flooding, the village was relocated in the 1920s
to a new site 10 miles downstream, which was called "Kochuk,"
now Shungnak. The few who remained at the village renamed it Kobuk. Ice
jams on the River cause high water each year. In May 1973, a flood covered
the entire village. In October 1973, the City was incorporated.
It is an Inupiat village practicing a traditional subsistence lifestyle.
The sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village. High School
students attend school in Shungnak.
The economy of Kobuk is based on subsistence. Whitefish, caribou and moose
provide the majority of meat sources. Cash employment is limited to the
school, City and Maniilaq clinic. Seasonal construction and BLM fire fighting
provide some income.
A piped water and sewer system, provides services to the community. A
30-foot well provides water, which is treated and stored by the washeteria.
The washeteria has its own septic tank. Waste is disposed of at Dall Creek.
A landfill is also available. Kobuk Valley Electric Co-op purchases power
from AVEC over the Kobuk-Shungnak intertie.
is the Borough Seat and largest city in the Northwest Arctic Borough. It
gets its name from the Kotzebue Sound, which was named after Otto von Kotzebue,
who explored the sound while searching for the Northwest Passage in the
service of Russia in 1818. Established as a permanent Eskimo village when
a reindeer station was located here about 1897. Prior to then, it was a
summer fish camp, first mentioned by Lieutenant Zagoskin (1847, pt. 1, p.
74), Imperial Russian Navy (IRN), who recorded the name as "Kikikhtagyut."
The 1880 Census lists the name as "Kikiktagamute," A post office
was established in 1899. A Society of Friends mission was founded the same
There is archaeological evidence that Inupiat people have lived at Kotzebue
since at least the 1400s. Because of its location, Kotzebue was a trading
and gathering center for the entire area. The Noatak, Selawik and Kobuk
Rivers drain into the Kotzebue Sound near Kotzebue to form a center for
transportation to points inland. In addition to people from interior villages,
inhabitants of the Russian Far East came to trade at Kotzebue. Furs, seal-oil,
hides, rifles, ammunition, and seal skins were some of the items traded.
People also gathered for competitions like the current World Eskimo Indian
Olympics . With the arrival of the whalers, traders, gold seekers, and
missionaries the trading center expanded.
was known by natives as Kikiktagruk or Qikiqtagruk, which means "almost
an island" in Inupiaq, the language of the Inupiat, which
is a reference to the spit. Reindeer herding was introduced in the area
in 1897. Although Alaska had caribou, the wild form of reindeer, the domesticated
reindeer were brought to Alaska from Asia. John Baker and Ed Iten, both
top 10 finishers in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, are residents of
Kotzebue. Located on NW shore of Baldwin Peninsula
Kotzebue is on the Baldwin Peninsula in Kotzebue Sound, on a 3-mile-long
spit, which ranges in width from 1,100 to 3,600 feet. It is located near
the discharges of the Kobuk, Noatak, and Selawik Rivers, 549 air miles
northwest of Anchorage and 26 miles above the Arctic Circle. Kotzebue
Recording District and is located in the transitional climate zone, which
is characterized by long, cold winters and cool summers. The average low
temperature during January is -12 °F. Snowfall averages 40 inches,
with total precipitation of 9 inches per year. Kotzebue Sound is ice-free
from early July until early October.
This site has been occupied by Inupiat for at least 600 years. "Kikiktagruk"
was the hub of ancient Arctic trading routes long before European contact,
due to its coastal location near a number of rivers. The German Lt. Otto
Von Kotzebue "discovered" Kotzebue Sound in 1818 for Russia.
The community was named after the Kotzebue Sound in 1899 when a post office
was established. Since the turn of the century, expansion of economic
activities and services in the area have enabled Kotzebue to develop relatively
rapidly. The city was formed in 1958. An air force base and White Alice
Communications System were later constructed.
The residents of Kotzebue are primarily Inupiat, and subsistence activities
are an integral part of the lifestyle. Each summer, the North Tent City
fish camp is set up to dry and smoke the season's catch. In 2009, Kotzebue
became a "wet" community, allowing the sale, import, and possession
Kotzebue is the service and transportation center for all villages in
the northwest region. It has a healthy cash economy, a growing private
sector, and a stable public sector. Due to its location at the confluence
of three river drainages, Kotzebue is the transfer point between ocean
and inland shipping. It is also the air transport center for the region.
Activities related to oil and minerals exploration and development have
contributed to the economy. The majority of income is directly or indirectly
related to government employment, such as the school district, Maniilaq
Association, the city, and the borough. The Teck Alaska Red Dog Mine is
a significant regional employer. Commercial fishing for chum salmon provides
some seasonal employment. 112 residents hold commercial fishing permits.
Most residents rely on subsistence to supplement income.
Water is supplied by the 150-million-gallon Vortac Reservoir, located
one and a half miles from the city. Water is treated and stored in a 1.5-million-gallon
tank. Water is heated with a waste heat recovery system at the electric
plant and distributed in circulating mains. Piped sewage is treated in
a 32-acre zero discharge facultative lagoon west of the airport. Around
80% of homes are fully plumbed, and 521 homes are served by the city system.
A transfer station and Class 2 permitted landfill with balefill is available.
Recycling and hazardous waste disposal are provided. Kotzebue uses ten
50 kilowatt wind turbines to supplement electricity.
listed by Ivan Petroff in the 1880 Census as "Noatagamute,"
i.e. "Noatak (River) people." Noatak was established as a fishing
and hunting camp in the 1800s. Two identifiable groups of Inupiat resided
on the Noatak River. The Nautaagmiut (called "Noatagamut" in
the 1880 census), Inupiaq for "inland river people", lived upriver,
and the Napaaqtugmiut, meaning "people of the trees", lived
downriver. By the early 20th century, the missionaries Robert and Carrie
Samms settled in what they called "Noatak". The Noatak post
office was established in 1940. Located on right bank of Noatak River,
37 mi. NE of Cape Krusenstern
Noatak is located on the west bank of the Noatak River, 55 miles north
of Kotzebue and 70 miles north of the Arctic Circle. This is the only
settlement on the 396 mile-long Noatak River, just west of the 66-million
acre Noatak National Preserve. Noatak is located in the Kotzebue Recording
District. Noatak is located in the transitional climate zone. Temperatures
average -21 to 15 during winter; 40 to 60 during summer. Temperature extremes
have been recorded from -59 to 75. Snowfall averages 48 inches, with 10
to 13 inches of total precipitation per year. The Noatak River is navigable
by shallow-draft boats from early June to early October.
It was established as a fishing and hunting camp in the 19th century.
The rich resources of this region enabled the camp to develop into a permanent
settlement. The 1880 census listed the site as Noatagamut, which means
"inland river people." A post office was established in 1940.
The village is Inupiat Eskimo. Subsistence activities are the central
focus of the culture, and families travel to fish camps during the summer.
The sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village.
Noatak's economy is principally based on subsistence, although the available
employment is diverse. The school district, City, Maniilaq and retail
stores are the primary employers. Seven residents hold commercial fishing
permits. During the summer, many families travel to seasonal fish camps
at Sheshalik, and others find seasonal work in Kotzebue or fire-fighting.
Chum salmon, whitefish, caribou, moose and waterfowl are harvested.
Noatak River basin is the largest mountain-ringed river basin in the nation
still virtually unaffected by man. The preserve includes landforms of great
scientific interest, including the 65-mile-long Grand Canyon of the Noatak,
a transition zone and migration route for plants and animals between subarctic
and arctic environments, and an array of flora among the most diverse anywhere
in the earth's northern latitudes. The preserve contains part of the Noatak
at or near a camp or village, called "Oksik" on a manuscript
map dated 1908, by an unknown author. The Noorvik post office was established
in 1937. Located on right bank of Nazuruk Channel Kobuk River, 33 mi.
NW of Selawik. Noorvik means "a place that is moved to"
in Inupiaq. The village was established by Kowagmuit Inupiat fishermen
and hunters from Deering in the early 1900s. Other settlers came from
Oksik, a few miles upriver.
Noorvik, Alaska, a remote village north of the Arctic Circle, is the first
community to be counted in the 2010 Census. Local census takers must get
a head start in Noorvik and other remote villages while the frozen ground
allows access by bush plane, dogsled and snowmobile. Many residents leave
following the spring thaw to fish and hunt or for other warm-weather jobs,
making it difficult to get an accurate count.
Noorvik is located on the right bank of the Nazuruk Channel of the Kobuk
River, 33 miles northwest of Selawik and 45 miles east of Kotzebue. The
village is downriver from the 1.7-million acre Kobuk Valley National Park.
Noorvik is located in the Kotzebue Recording District. The community is
located in the transitional climate zone. Temperatures average -10 to
15 during winter; 40 to 65 during summer. Temperature extremes have been
recorded from -54 to 87. Snowfall averages 60 inches, with 16 inches of
total precipitation per year. The Kobuk River is navigable from early
June to mid-October.
Noorvik means "a place that is moved to." The village was established
by Kowagmuit Inupiat Eskimo fishermen and hunters from Deering in the
early 1900s. The village was also settled by people from Oksik, a few
miles upriver. A post office was established in 1937. The City government
was incorporated in 1964.
Noorvik is primarily an Inupiat Eskimo community with a subsistence lifestyle.
The sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village.
The primary local employers are the school district, the City, the Maniilaq
health clinic, and two stores. Seasonal employment at the Red Dog Mine,
BLM fire fighting, or work in Kotzebue supplement income. Two residents
hold commercial fishing permits. Caribou, fish, moose, waterfowl and berries
Alaska, a remote village north of the Arctic Circle, is the first community
to be counted in the 2010 Census. Local census takers must get a head
start in Noorvik and other remote villages while the frozen ground allows
access by bush plane, dogsled and snowmobile. Many residents leave following
the spring thaw to fish and hunt or for other warm-weather jobs, making
it difficult to get an accurate count.
of an Eskimo village reported in 1953 by J. W. Van Stone. Located near mouth
of Kobuk River, about 30 mi. E of Kotzebue.
miles north of Kotzebue, is the world's largest zinc and lead mine, and
provides over a quarter of the borough's wage and salary payroll.
The Red Dog
Mine CDP derives its name from the Red Dog mine, the world's largest source
for zinc and a significant source of lead. Construction of the Red Dog
mine began in 1987, after exploration revealed that the area was rich
in metals. Although native populations have historically used the nearby
area for seasonal food-gathering, there are no permanent residents at
the mine or the port site. The mine's workforce consists of about 460
employees and contractors, of which somewhat more than half will be on-site
at any given time. At the mine, everyone stays in the single large housing
unit, tucked in among the process buildings near the edge of the open
pit, while a small portion of the work force stays at the port site. A
52-mile long haul road connects the mine to the mine's port site on the
Chukchi Sea. The region is accessible only by air, except during the 100-day
shipping season. Mine workers from remote villages in the region are ferried
to the mine on small aircraft.
or tribe reported in 1842-44 by Lieutenant L. A. Zagoskin, Imperial Russian
Navy (IRN), who spelled it "Chilivik." 1880 U.S. Census lists
the Selawik people, i.e., "Selawigamute". Selawik post office
was established in 1930. The people and the village probably took their
name from the nearby lake or river. Around 1908, the village site had
a small wooden schoolhouse and church. The village now has expanded across
the Selawik River onto three banks, linked by bridges.
on left bank of Selatwik River, 44 mi. NE of Elephant Point.
Selawik is located at the mouth of the Selawik River where it empties
into Selawik Lake, about 90 miles east of Kotzebue. It lies 670 miles
northwest of Anchorage. The City is near the Selawik National Wildlife
Refuge, a key breeding and resting spot for migratory waterfowl. Selawik
is located in the Kotzebue Recording District. The community is located
in the transitional climate zone. Temperatures average -10 to 15 during
winter; 40 to 65 during summer. Temperature extremes have been recorded
from -50 to 83. Snowfall averages 35 to 40 inches, with 10 inches of total
precipitation per year. The Selawik River is navigable from early June
Lt. L.A. Zagoskin of the Imperial Russian Navy first reported the village
in the 1840s as "Chilivik." Ivan Petroff counted 100 "Selawigamute"
people in his 1880 census. Selawik is an Inupait name for a species of
fish. Around 1908, the site had a small wooden schoolhouse and church.
The village has continued to grow and has expanded across the Selawik
River onto three banks, linked by bridges. Selawik incorporated as a First
Class City in 1974, but in 1977, changed to a Second Class City government.
Selawik is an Inupiaq community active in traditional subsistence fishing
and hunting. The sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village.
Inhabitants of Selawik subsist mainly on whitefish, sheefish, caribou,
moose, ducks, ptarmigan and berries. Occasionally, bartered seal and beluga
whale supplement the diet. The primary employers in the community include
the school, the City, the IRA, Maniilaq and three grocery stores. Handicrafts
are made and sold locally and at gift shops in larger cities. Seasonal
work is also found outside of Selawik at the Red Dog Mine, BLM firefighting
or in lighterage operations. Four residents hold commercial fishing permits.
Eskimo village and summer camp, famous as a trading area for Eskimo and
Indian, recorded as "Sesualik," in Captain F. W. Beechey's chart,
dated 1831. In the 1880 Census, Petroff (1884, p. 4) listed "Sheshalegamute,"
population 100. Captain Hooper (1881, p. 44) published "She-shore-lik,"
and Lieutenant G. M. Stoney's manuscript map, dated 1883, shows "She-sur-are-lick."
Located on Sheshalik Spit, 9 mi. NW of Kotzebue.
of Kochuk, later renamed Shungnak, was settled in the 1920s. The original
village of Kobuk, settled in 1899 and situated about 10 miles upstream,
was largely abandoned due to flooding. A few residents remain at Kobuk.
The name "Shungnak" is derived from the Eskimo term "issingnak",
which means jade, a stone found in the surrounding area.The
first postmaster at Shungnak was Martin F. Moran, appointed September
24, 1903. A post office was established for a few months in 1934 and then
again in 1946. Located on right bank of Kobuk River 85 mi. NE of Selawik.
Shungnak is located on the west bank of the Kobuk River, about 150 miles
east of Kotzebue. The original settlement was 10 miles further upstream
at Kobuk. Shungnak is located in the Kotzebue Recording District. The
area encompasses 8.4 sq. miles of land and 1.3 sq. miles of water. The
community is located in the transitional climate zone. Temperatures average
-10 to 15 °F during winter and 40 to 65 °F during summer. Temperature
extremes have been recorded from -60 to 90 °F. Snowfall averages 80
inches, with 16 inches of total precipitation per year. The Kobuk River
is navigable from the end of May to mid-October.
Founded in 1899 as a supply point for mining activities in the Cosmos
Hills, this Inupiaq village was forced to move in the 1920s because of
river erosion and flooding. The old site, 10 miles upstream, was renamed
Kobuk by those who remained there. The new village was named "Kochuk"
but later reverted to Shungnak. This name is derived from the Inupait
word "Issingnak," which means jade, a stone found extensively
throughout the surrounding hills. The city government was incorporated
It is a traditional Inupiaq village with a subsistence lifestyle. The
sale or importation of alcohol is banned in the village. High School students
from Kobuk attend school in Shungnak.
Shungnak subsists mainly on fishing, seasonal employment, hunting, and
trapping. Subsistence food sources include sheefish, whitefish, caribou,
moose, ducks, and berries. Most full-time employment is with the school
district, city, Maniilaq Association, two stores, and a lodge. BLM provides
seasonal employment in firefighting, hiring over 30 residents each year.
Shungnak also has a strong arts and crafts industry; residents make and
sell finely-crafted baskets, masks, mukluks, parkas, hats, and mittens.
The community wants to develop a visitor center, mini-mall, post office,
and clinic complex at Dahl Creek.
by the Alaska Bureau of Vital Statistics. Under Alaska law, all Vital Statistics
records are strictly confidential until they become public records. Births
become public records 100 years after the event; deaths, marriages, and
divorces become public records 50 years after the event.
is an area where volunteers can be of great help. If you have an old yearbook,
scan it in and send it to the Borough Coordinator.