History of Fairbanks Alaska

Posted on Saturday, August 08, 2009

Before Fairbanks was founded, Koyukon Athabaskans lived, fished, and hunted in the area with the Tanana and other rivers serving as trade routes with other Athabaskans and Eskimos. By the early 1900s, gold rush prospectors were spreading out into Alaska in search of gold. The discovery of gold in the nearby area led to the creation of Fairbanks. It began with a trading post started by E.T. Barnette who was forced to disembark on the shores of the Chena River in 1902. The Fairbanks Gold Rush led to the development of an established mining community and it became an important commercial center within a short time. In 1903, Fairbanks was incorporated as a city and named after a popular Senator, Charles W. Fairbanks, soon to become Vice President under Teddy Roosevelt. Eventually the gold panned out and Fairbanks settled into fifty years of modest growth marked by rail and highway construction.

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