Welcome to the official website of the Gastineau Channel Historical Society

News and Upcoming Events

U.S.F.S Mendenhall Visitor Center – 2021 Fireside Chats
The 2021 Virtual Fireside Lecture Series was held January 15 – March 15, which included a number of programs relating to local area cultural and natural history.  The programs  may be viewed on this link:  https://www.facebook.com/watch/1042594919101715/414231443333635/

Juneau-Douglas City Museum News and Events
Monthly newsletter – click here
From the  April newsletter:  The museum is now open, so drop by Thursday – Sunday between 10am and 4pm to view new additions to our exhibits. You can still visit the museum remotely via our robot or call to schedule a private in-person tour. Admission is free for the month of April.  Call the museum at 586-0966 for more information, or check the website.  Heritage, the 17th annual community 12×12 art show which opened in March continueson display online through Saturday, April 20th, 2021. For 17 years, the City Museum has hosted this unique community art exhibit in which artists of all ages are encouraged to create works within the parameters of a square or a cube, measuring 12″ x 12″ (by 12″) including the framing. This year, artists were encouraged to create on the theme, heritage. Check the newsletter for more details on these and other events and resources available at the museum.

Gastineau Channel Historical Society’s Annual Meeting
GCHS’s annual meeting was held Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 via Zoom. Featured speaker was Anjuli Grantham, curator of statewide services for the Alaska State Museum and an author and editor of “Tin Can Country: Southeast Alaska’s Historic Salmon Canneries.” Grantham curated the current exhibit “Alaska’s Suffrage Star” (https://lam.alaska.gov/suffrage-star) in honor of the 100th anniversary of female enfranchisement and discussed it for the meeting (click on the link above to view it). Grantham has been a public historian ten years, including two at the museum and previously in Kodiak, where she grew up. (Read her work at www.anjuligrantham.com)

Alaska Historical Society Award
Although this year’s annual meeting in mid-October of the Alaska Historical Society was limited to virtual sessions via Zoom meetings due to the on-going Covid-19 concerns and restrictions, Gastineau Channel Historical Society was awarded one of the AHS’s top awards, the Esther Billman Certificate of Excellence Award, given to recognize a project contributing to the preservation and understanding of Alaska history during the past year.  This was in recognition of our spring Gastineau Heritage News issue that focused on Juneau area health events of  1918 that were eerily similar to the Covid-19 pandemic situation of 2020.  Kudos to our newsletter team of Laury Scandling, writer/editor, and Paula Johnson and Rich Mattson, researchers!

Past and Present – Juneau-Douglas City Museum Bi-annual newsletter
Current newsletter – click here
News about collections, exhibits, museum activities and updates. Highlights of  the Fall-Winter 2020-2021 newsletter:  The CBJ Assembly was able to secure funding for the Juneau ArtWorks grant which was intended to deliver CARES act funding to artists who had lost gigs or work contracts, were laid off, or who were put into a vulnerable financial position due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of these art works are now on display at the museum, in which the newsletter describes the process and basis for the program. Towards the end of 2020, the City Museum also received on loan the majority of the Morris Alaska Art Collection, previously exhibited in the Juneau Empire newspaper building. This collection includes pieces from artists spanning 150 years and highlights Alaskan artists and Alaskan scenes. The ongoing current history exhibit “The Echoes of War:Unangax̂ Internment During WW II” brings attention to the history of the Unangax̂ internment camps in Southeast, Alaska along with a brief history of Funter Bay. This exhibit continues through October 2021.

Alaska Historical Society Blog – Eyewitness booklet series
Chris Allan has compiled four booklets of what he calls the “Eyewitness Series”  Chris’s intent with the first four booklets is to showcase voices of the past: “I wanted to get away from the traditional historian’s narrative form where primary sources play a secondary or tertiary role behind the historian’s voice and analysis. I like the idea of people hearing history from the eyewitnesses. In each case, I was so impressed with what was available in digitized newspapers that I wanted to share it.”  Each booklet includes advertisements, early maps, paintings, drawings and photographs previously unpublished or never collected in the same place.  Juneau’s origins are featured in Eyewitness Series #3: A Rough and Tumble Country: Juneau’s Origins as Alaska’s First Gold Mining Boomtown as Described by Eyewitnesses, 1880-1881, a collaboration with Mark Kirchhoff about the discovery of gold in Gastineau Channel and the evolution of what would become Alaska’s capital city.





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