WRANGELL (ALASKA) - GEOGRAPHY AND HISTORY

Wrangell is a community of 2,600 residents, located on the north end of Wrangell Island. Its history is linked to its proximity to the Stikine River. The Stikine meets the Inside Passage near Wrangell and provides a water highway through the Alaska coastal mainland and into British Columbia.

Wrangell is the only town in Alaska to have been governed not only by Alaska Natives but also under three flags: Russian, British and American. The community’s past began with Indian fur trade on the river and it later experienced the boom and bust of three 19th century gold rushes.

Today, Wrangell’s economy is based on timber, fishing, and tourism. Bears at Anan Bay and migratory birds on the Stikine River Delta lure visitors for world-class wildlife viewing. Many also visit the nearby Stikine–LeConte Wilderness. In addition, Wrangell acts as a service center for gold mining at Bronson Creek, which flows into the Iskut, a major tributary of the Stikine. Wrangell is home to the Wrangell Ranger District.

Luciano Mende

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