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Encyclopedia > Pelican, Alaska

Pelican is a city located in Skagway-Hoonah-Angoon Census Area in the U.S. state of Alaska. As of the 2000 census, the population of the city is 163. Skagway-Hoonah-Angoon Census Area is a census area located in the state of Alaska. ... A state of the United States (a U.S. state) is any one of the fifty states (four of which officially favor the term commonwealth) which, along with the District of Columbia, form the United States of America. ... Official language(s) English Capital Largest city Juneau Anchorage Area  - Total   - Width   - Length    - % water  - Latitude  - Longitude Ranked 1st 663,267 sq mi  1,717,854 km² 808 miles  1,300 km 1,479 miles  2,380 km 13. ... The 22nd United States Census, known as Census 2000 and conducted by the Census Bureau, determined the resident population of the United States on April 1, 2000, to be 281,421,906, an increase of 13. ...

Contents


Geography

Location of Pelican, Alaska

Pelican is located at 57°57'30" North, 136°13'27" West (57.958431, -136.224069)GR1. Image File history File links AKMap-doton-Pelican. ... The following is a list of sources used in the creation of encyclopedia articles on various geographic topics and locations, such as cities, counties, states, and countries. ...


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.8 km² (0.7 mi²). 1.5 km² (0.6 mi²) of it is land and 0.3 km² (0.1 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 17.14% water. The United States Census Bureau (officially Bureau of the Census) is a part of the United States Department of Commerce. ... Square kilometre (US spelling: Square kilometer), symbol km², is an SI unit of surface area. ... A square mile is an Imperial unit of area equal to that of a square with sides each 1 statute mile (5,280 feet, 1,760 yards, 1,609. ...


Demographics

As of the censusGR2 of 2000, there were 163 people, 70 households, and 41 families residing in the city. The population density was 108.5/km² (280.5/mi²). There were 94 housing units at an average density of 62.6/km² (161.8/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 72.39% White, 0.00% Black or African American, 21.47% Native American, 1.23% Asian, 0.00% Pacific Islander, 0.61% from other races, and 4.29% from two or more races. 0.61% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 1870 US Census for New York City A census is the process of obtaining information about every member of a population (not necessarily a human population). ... The following is a list of sources used in the creation of encyclopedia articles on various geographic topics and locations, such as cities, counties, states, and countries. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ... The United States Census Bureau uses the federal governments definitions of race when performing a census. ...


There were 70 households out of which 30.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.4% were married couples living together, 5.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.4% were non-families. 28.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.78. The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ...


In the city the population was spread out with 24.5% under the age of 18, 3.1% from 18 to 24, 28.2% from 25 to 44, 34.4% from 45 to 64, and 9.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 143.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 146.0 males.


The median income for a household in the city was $48,750, and the median income for a family was $57,083. Males had a median income of $50,500 versus $3,750 for females. The per capita income for the city was $29,347. 4.7% of the population and 0.0% of families were below the poverty line. 0.0% of those under the age of 18 and 0.0% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line. The per capita income for a group of people may be defined as their total personal income, divided by the total population. ... Map of countries showing percentage of population who have an income below the national poverty line The poverty line is the level of income below which one cannot afford to purchase all the resources one requires to live. ...


History

According to legend many years ago when Russian ships roamed Alaska waters one foundered in the uncharted waters of Cross Sound. Survivors rowed their lifeboat up an inlet that would later be known as Lisianski. In a sheltered cove they founded a settlement. They cleared and planted gardens, trapped and hunted game. The story goes that a shipyard was built and a ship constructed. This allowed them to returned to their homeland. The story most likely should have read Native Americans, who while gathering winter food found them and returned them to a settlement, perhaps, Sitka.


When the Russian settlement died, the land again reverted to wilderness. Early hunters and trappers noticed the clearing in the woods, and found iron and copper tools along with sunken graves. They named the abandoned settlement "Sunnyside."


By 1938 the Russians were long forgotten and Lisianski Inlet had become home to gold miners. Hjalmor Mork, Jack Ronning and the older of the Mork family boys operated the Mork mine. Besides the Mork mine there was another gold mine called the Apex, which can be found across the inlet from Sunnyside. Jack Koby was developing a mine up towards the head of the inlet and another mine was being worked at its mouth. This is the Lisisanski Inlet Kalle (Charley) Raatikainen found when he started looking for a place to build a town.


Charley Raatikainen was an Alaskan pioneer and fish buyer when fish made people wealthy. Kallie wasn't rich he was just tired. During the fishing season he would hardly sleep, as he bought fish and ran them from the fishing grounds to Sitka. Charley would leave Deer Harbor when the last troller had unloaded for the night. He would arrive in Sitka around 3 in the morning awaken the crew, unload, pick up groceries and arrive back on the fishing grounds by noon. Hoping to give better and faster service to the fisherman and buyers, he began looking for a place to build a cold storage plant close to the fishing grounds.


Charley went to his friend Hjalmor Mork and told him what he was looking for. On August 2, 1938 Hjalmor took him to a place up the inlet near his mine. Kallie found a harbor, land and a large lake with a waterfall. He knew he had found his town site. Located between Juneau and Sitka the site had everything he was looking for.


Charley organized a corporation and brought in a crew to start the building. His boat the Pelican, brought Bob DeRmond as timekeeper and storekeeper, Eli Rapichin as camp bullcook and another cook known as Slim. Others may have been Don White and Gust Savela. A. P. Walder and his wife Martha arrived with their troller and Charley had one or two others with him when he brought in his fish scows. One scow was put on the beach and became the messhouse with worker quarters in the upper section. The other scow was anchored out and connected to the beach by a floating walkway. It served as a warehouse as well as living quarters for workers. The town site became know as Pelican City. Why is not known, but probably not to confuse it with Charlie's boat the Pelican.


Four of the Paddock brothers came with their pile driving equipment. They used their donkey engine on the pile driver to clear timber from the cold storage site. Hjalmer Mork and Jack Ronning moved their air compressor and jackhammers up from their mine to clear rock from the cold storage site. The first building erected ashore had a dual purpose. It housed a Finnish steam bath on one side and on the other a store and offices for the new corporation. The town started looking like a town when the Paddocks and Charley built homes. Arthur Silverman arrived from Sitka with lumber, beer and a license to operate a beer parlor and soon was open for business.


The steam schooner the SS Tongass arrived and dropped overboard tons of lumber and piling in front of the town. . A sawmill and other supplies were loaded on rafts and dragged ashore. The SS Tongass would be the only steamer into Pelican for the next few years with supplies but not on regular basis.


The expense of building a cold storage, acquiring diesel engines, building a water and electric system left the company short of money. Charley went to Seattle and raised money, but it was never enough. The town continued to grow, because the depression left little winter work elsewhere. Fishermen and others were willing to take grub, tobacco and stock in the company for their work.


There was a major setback when the bathhouse caught fire and the only available fire equipment was a few buckets of salt water brought up from the beach. The bath/store building was quickly replaced and would later become home to Pelican's first school. One of the first major construction sites was a two-story multipurpose building. On the first floor a kitchen and mess hall occupied one end with the office, store and later the post office on the other side. The upper floor was used for a bunkhouse. This buildings second floor is still used as a bunkhouse.


Gus Servile, a Finn and Alaskan fish buyer oversaw the building of the dam. The Paddock brothers built the wharf, fish house and started the boardwalk. When the summer fishing season began, the men left to work other jobs or fish their boats and even Charley had to take his scows to their summer stations. Work slowed in 1939, when the Navy began building a base on Japonske Island and outside jobs became available. Jobs that paid cash instead of stock in what appeared to be a very shaky corporation. Even so, things progressed, a Post office was established on November 27, 1939 with Bob De Armond as first postmaster. Pelican's school opened with Arvo Wahto becoming its first teacher. He would teach two generations of children before retiring in the 60's. A sawmill was built and put into operation producing the lumber to build homes adding to the permanence of the town.


In the summer of 1940 things got livelier when A. R. Breuger of Wrangell brought his floating cannery to Pelican and moored it to the dock. It brought new people and small seine boats to town, and employment to a few of the residents. By the summer of 1941 Pelican had another salmon cannery. The Cape Cross Salmon Company organized by Larry Freeburn and Pros Ganty put canning machinery and a retort in the fish house, they made a pack of more than 17,000 cases. Later, Cape Cross would build a separate cannery next to the cold storage.


Henry Roden the former attorney general of Alaska who was helping Charlie raise money, finally had success when Norton Clapp agreed to participate in the project. The work of getting the cold storage plant operating immediately gathered speed. J. P. McNeil, who had been in charge of the Booth Fisheries cold storage at Sitka for many years, was hired as manager to oversee the installation of the refrigeration machinery. The hydroelectric power plant was completed and a new office and store building were attached to the cold storage.


In August of 1942 the first fish was loaded into the sharp freezer. The census in 1939 gave Pelican a count of 48. In 1951 it was up to 180, it would later reach its peak at 250.


External links

Coordinates: 57.958431° N -136.224069° E Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically); large version (pdf) The geographic (earth-mapping) coordinate system expresses every horizontal position on Earth by two of the three coordinates of a spherical coordinate system which is aligned with the spin axis of the Earth. ...

  • Maps and aerial photos

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