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McGrath, Alaska's Community Message Board

McGrath Newsletter-Archived McGrath City Newsletters

McGrath Airport webcam

Borealis Broadband -McGrathalaska.net

Paintings and Sculptures -by local artist Christopher Shelborne

Yearbooks -old McGrath Yearbooks and other stuff


The Old Town McGrath site, across the river from present-day McGrath, was a meeting and trading place for Big River, Nikolai, Telida and Lake Minchumina villagers.  In 1904, Abraham Appel established a trading post in Old Town. In 1906, gold was discovered in the Innoko District, and in 1907, at Ganes Creek. Since McGrath was the northernmost point on the Kuskokwim River accessible by large riverboats, it became a regional supply center. A town was established at the site of Old McGrath in 1907, and was named for Peter McGrath, a local United States Marshal. The Iditarod Trail also contributed to McGrath's role as a supply center. From 1911 to 1920, hundreds of people walked and mushed over the trail on their way to the Ophir gold districts. After a major flood in 1933, some residents moved across the river. In 1940, an airstrip was cleared, the United States Federal Aviation Administration built a communications complex, and a school was opened. McGrath became an important refueling stop for Lend-Lease equipment during World War II.

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John Seiberling on ANWR

 "Alaska has the opportunity to take some areas that are significant in size, and to keep them the way the Creator fashioned them.  And when you fly over this land, or stand on it or look at it from the top of a mountain, the streaks are those of a great artist.  The abstract designs are absolutely beyond the wildest imaginings of Picasso.  It's important to people to know that there is some place in North America where they can go, or where even if they never go, they know it exists, where there are large stretches of land, at least large enough so that you can stand at some point and there is nowhere in any direction where you will be able to see any of the marks of man."   

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