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Early Correspondence - Cook Inlet and Prince William Sound

Published 2-1-2021 | Last updated 2-1-2021


This project is an ongoing effort to centralize firsthand accounts from the earliest western immigrants, with a focus on the time period from 1880-1920. The goal is to organize documentation and sources to facilitate future research. Sources will be added periodically, and this should not be interpreted as a complete recordset.

The external links may be to images without any associated text, or with OCR'd text which may contain errors. Transcripts on this page have been proofread.

‘Six Years in Alaska’ – April 19, 1885

Original (The New York Times) | Transcipt

A tantalizing account from an unnamed English-speaking government employee who spent time on the Kenai Peninsula in the 1870s. Several other national newspapers carrying the story referred to the writer as a 'returned soldier' or 'a recent traveler in that part of Uncle Sam’s domain' but none stated a name.

‘From the Gold Land’ – November 17, 1896

Original (The Seattle Post-Intelligencer) | Transcipt

Letter from John Noon, who traveled from Resurrection Bay to prospect the southeast tip of Kenai Lake.

‘Great Beds of Copper Discovered’ – November 13, 1897

Original (The San Francisco Call) | Transcipt

Correspondent Hal Hoffman describes Cook Inlet mineral development including the strike Mike Gladhaugh (Mekkel von Gladhaugh) which opened the Prince William Sound copper rush.

‘Faith in the Inlet Mines’ – November 26, 1897

Original (The Seattle Post-Intelligencer) | Transcipt

Sunrise City resident Robert H. Calligan (of the U.S. Mercantile Co.) describes the state of mining development on Turnagain Arm.