Beaver


Population: 84*, predominantly Gwitchin/Koyukon Athabascan Indian and Inupiat Eskimo

Location: North side of the Yukon River, 60 miles SW of Fort Yukon and 110 miles N of Fairbanks 

History: Gold discoveries in the Chandalar region in 1907 led to the founding of Beaver. It was established as the Yukon River terminus for miners heading north to the gold fields. The Alaska Road Commission built a trail from Beaver north to Caro on the Chandalar River in approximately 1907. In 1910, Thomas Carter and H.E. Ashelby established a store at Beaver, and three freight companies operated on the trail, commonly known as Government Road. In 1911, about the time the gold rush was over, Frank Yasuda, a Japanese man who had traded at Point Barrow and prospected in the Brooks Range, arrived with a group of Eskimos and became a partner in the trading post. They served the remaining mines in the region, supplied riverboats with firewood, and traded with Eskimo and Indian fur trappers. A post office was established in Beaver in 1913, and a second trading post opened in the early 1920s. The first Beaver school opened in 1928, and an airstrip was built in the 1930s. Beaver’s population remained stable from 1950 through the 1970s. In 1974, the village council purchased the local store and set it up as a cooperative, with villagers holding shares of stock. 

*According to the 2010 US Census