Alaska is part of the country steeped in history and natural beauty. With many historic monuments to see, you'll have a hard time picking your favorites. Knowing what's out there can help you develop a plan when you're in the area. Here's what you need to know.
Indian Valley Mine
Address: 27301 Seward Highway, Indian, AK
Hours: May 15 - September 15 from 9am - 6pm
The Indian Valley Mine, located about 30 minutes outside Anchorage in the town of Indian, is a historic monument made up of two historic cabins built in the early 1900's. Visitors to the mine are given the opportunity to pan for gold and tour through the cabins.
The area is beautiful as well, and people who come to the cabin are able to take in gorgeous views of the surrounding wildlife. This area has been listed as a National Historic Site. The site is open May through September, so plan your visit accordingly.
Pioneer School House
Address: 3rd Ave. and Eagle St, Anchorage, AK
Hours: Contact the Anchorage Woman's Club at (907) 258-7544 for more information
Run by the Anchorage Woman's Club, the Pioneer School House now sits 11 blocks away from its original location. First used as a school house, the building provided poor accommodations for the students who attended it. Later on, the upstairs was converted into a dance floor, and the building was used as a social hall until the mid-1960's.
Following the earthquake in 1964, the Pioneer School House was saved from demolition by the Anchorage Women's Club. It was at this time the club was moved, and it is now on the national register of historic places.
Eklutna Village Historic Park
Address: Eklutna Village Road, Chugiak, AK
Hours: Contact (907) 688-6026 for more information
Eklutna Village Historic Park represents an opportunity for visitors to tour an old Russian Orthodox church constructed from logs. The building is no longer in use, but is kept up for visitors. This is the oldest building in the area and was originally constructed in 1870. During your visit, you'll learn about the history and culture of the first settlers in Anchorage. Visitors to the cemetery are also able to view the spirit houses, constructed by the Athabaskan people. Spirit houses are small, colorful houses built by the family after a person's passing.
Oscar Anderson House Museum
Address: P.O. Box 102205, Anchorage, AK 99510-2205
Hours: Wed-Sat from 12pm - 4pm
Oscar Anderson was a Swedish butcher who lived in Anchorage for the majority of his life. He is noted as being the eighteenth person to ever set foot on Anchorage ground, and the first person to own a wood frame house in the area. The Oscar Anderson House Museum is that home, and it is treasured for its distinguished position as being the first Anchorage home. Today, the museum has a small staff and is open part-time to the public. Oscar Anderson lived in the house for decades. It was remodeled after his death, and visitors to the home will see it as it appeared in 1915.
Alaska is rich with history and surrounded by fierce wilderness. Winter conditions can make some parts less accessible at certain times of year, so plan your trip accordingly. Check out these locations as you plan your upcoming trip to Alaska.