Welcome to Bristol Bay Borough, Alaska
A Proud Part of the Genealogy Trails
Welcome to the Genealogy Trails website for Bristol Bay Borough, Alaska
Our goal is to help you track your ancestors through time by transcribing genealogical and historical data and
placing it online for the free use of all researchers. This is a continuation of our original Illinois Trails History and Genealogy Project and we are excited about this opportunity to expand into other states.
We welcome your feedback and comments, and of course, your data contributions. If you have transcribed data that
you would like to have posted on this website, please send it to us.
If you would like to be kept informed of our state and county website updates, subscribe to our mailing lists
This Site is Available for Adoption!
We are looking for a coordinator for this site.... folks who share our dedication to putting data online and are
interested in helping this project be as helpful and useful to researchers as it can be. If you are interested
in joining our group as host of this site, view our Volunteer Page for further
information and contact Kim.
Location and Climate
Approximately 500 square miles in area, the Bristol Bay Borough is located in Southwest Alaska, at the upper eastern
end of Bristol Bay. The Katmai National Park is adjacent to the Borough.It lies at approximately 58.720000°
North Latitude and -157.000000° West Longitude . The area encompasses 504.9 sq. miles of land and 382.8 sq.
miles of water. Bristol Bay Borough's climate is mainly maritime, characterized by cool, humid, and windy weather.
Fog is common during summer months. Average summer temperatures range from 42 to 63 degrees Fahrenheit. Average
winter temperatures range from 29 to 44 degrees Fahrenheit. Extremes have been recorded, ranging from a low of
-46 to a high of 88 degrees Fahrenheit. Total precipitation averages 20 inches and snowfall averages 45 inches.
History, Culture and Demographics
The region was first settled by Athabascan Indians, Central Yup'ik Eskimos and Sugpiaq (Aleut-Russian) Eskimos.
Hunting and fishing camps along the Naknek River date from 3,000 to 4,000 B.C. In 1818, the first Russian traders
arrived. Two years later, the first Russian settlement was established, and in 1841, the Russian Orthodox Mission
was built at Nushagak. The Russians explored and maintained dominance of the area until the U.S. purchase of Alaska
in 1867. U.S. interests were directed primarily at the fur and fishery potential of the region. In 1883, the first
salmon cannery in Bristol Bay was opened. In 1890, the first cannery on the Naknek River was opened. Commercial
salmon remain the region's primary industry. During World War II, King Salmon Air Force Base was developed. The
Bristol Bay Borough was incorporated as the state's first borough in 1962.
The population of the community consists of 45.1% Alaska Native or part Native. Due to the outstanding commercial
fishing opportunities, the Borough population increases by several thousand during the red salmon season. King
Salmon is a departure point for Katmai National Park and Preserve, Brooks Camp, and various fishing and hunting
Communities located within the Borough include King Salmon, Naknek, and South Naknek. Commercial fishing, processing,
government jobs, and transportation services are the mainstays of the economy. Naknek and South Naknek are dependent
on fishing and processing, while many King Salmon residents work for the government and air taxi operations.
King Salmon is the hub for the area. The borough seat is Naknek. It is among the smallest of boroughs, consisting
of little more than the rectangle of land around Naknek on the coast and King Salmon (which, uniquely, serves as
the borough seat for the neighboring Lake and Peninsula Borough) inland.
Cities and towns
King Salmon ~ Naknek ~ South Naknek