The History of Gulkana

Gulkana is located on the east bank of the Gulkana (Kulkana) River at its confluence with the Copper River. It lies at mile 127 of the Richardson Highway, 14 miles north of Glennallen. It lies at approximately 62 16' N Latitude, 145 23' W Longitude (Sec. 27, T006N, R001W, Copper River Meridian). The community is located in the Chitina Recording District. The area encompasses 12 sq. miles of land and 0 sq. miles of water.

The Ahtna people have occupied this area for 5,000 to 7,000 years. Gulkana was originally established in 1903 as a telegraph station, and was named "Kulkana" after the nearby river. The Gulkana Roadhouse was built in the early 1900s by C.L. Hoyt, a fur dealer who ran the roadhouse until 1916. A store, post office and Orr stage station were located nearby. Gulkana was originally located across the river from its present site; it was cut in half during construction of the Richardson Highway during World War II. In the early 1950s, the first house was built at the new site. Chief Ewan and his family were the first Native residents, and eventually all of the villagers relocated.


To Community Histories Index Alaska DCCED Community Database Online


History and map graphic used with permission from the Alaska Department of Community and Economic Development