Southcentral Alaska

Dirt Road to Kennecott::Alaska, United States::
Dirt Road to Kennecott
Wrangell Mnts::Alaska, United States::
Wrangell Mnts

Wrangell - St Elias National Park is the largest in the United States - at 5.3 million hectares (13.2 million acres), the size of six Yellowstones.

Old Railroad::Alaska, United States::
Old Railroad
Kennicott::Alaska, United States::
Abandoned Copper Mine::Alaska, United States::
Abandoned Copper Mine

Abandoned Kennicott Copper Mine was one of the biggest in the world. It took its misspelled name from Kennecott Glacier. Once home for over 800 workers, today this is a ghost town.

Eklutna Cemetery::Alaska, United States::
Eklutna Cemetery
Spirit Houses::Alaska, United States::
Spirit Houses
Russian Orthodox Chapel::Alaska, United States::
Russian Orthodox Chapel

The Russians came to Eklutna in the early 1800's and converted Athabaskan Indians to Russian Orthodox religion. Many of the religious practices of natives and the Russians blended. One of the most interesting are spirit houses found in the Eklutna Cemetery. They contain personal items to help the spirit in the next life. Each family uses specific colors for their spirit house to identify their clan. There are no written names. The three-bar Orthodox cross placed in the foot of the grave identifies members of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Matanuska Galcier::Alaska, United States::
Matanuska Galcier
Black Spruce::Alaska, United States::
Black Spruce
Totem Pole::Alaska, United States::
Totem Pole

The totem poles from coast region of Alaska trace the history of individual families and clans. They are like a family crest or family tree. Each figure on the pole is a symbol of a family characteristic, an event, or a totem - a power of nature to which the family has a special relation. From the many portrayed figures, Thunderbird is the most powerful spirit. It perches at the highest point. The ideal tree for carving is a western red cedar that grows close to the sea or a river, so it is easy to transport. Unfortunately, cedar posts rot after about 65 years, so few old poles remain standing.

Thunderbird::Alaska, United States::
Crow Creen Mine::Alaska, United States::
Crow Creen Mine
Happy Miner::Alaska, United States::
Happy Miner

Gold! A magic word that was the magnet for thousands of people to travel to the last frontier in search of a fortune. This soft metal played an important part in Alaska's history. Many of today’s towns were settled and grew during gold rushes. It is a good idea to try a gold panning in Crow Creek Mine to see how cold is the water in a stream and find out how much blood can mosquitoes pump out from your body.

© 2000 Maciej Swulinski