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The History of Ouzinkie, Alaska


Ouzinkie, Alaska - a Community Guide

    Ouzinkie is located on the west coast of Spruce Island, adjacent to Kodiak Island. It lies northwest of the City of Kodiak and 247 air miles southwest of Anchorage. It lies at approximately 57 55' N Latitude, 152 29' W Longitude (Sec. 15, T026S, R020W, Seward Meridian). The community is located in the Kodiak Recording District. The area encompasses 6 sq. miles of land and 2 sq. miles of water.

    Ouzinkie became a retirement community for the Russian American Company. The Russians referred to the settlement in 1849 as "Uzenkiy," meaning "village of Russians and Creoles." In 1889, the Royal Packing Company constructed a cannery at Ouzinkie. Shortly afterward, the American Packing Company built another. In 1890, a Russian Orthodox Church was built, and in 1927, a post office was established. Cattle ranching was popular in the early 1900s. In 1964, the Good Friday earthquake and resulting tsunami destroyed the Ouzinkie Packing Company cannery. Following the disaster, Columbia Ward bought the remains and rebuilt the store and dock, but not the cannery. In the late 1960s, the Ouzinkie Seafoods cannery was constructed. The operation was sold to Glacier Bay, and burned down in 1976 shortly after the sale. No canneries have operated since.


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To the main Department of Community and Economic Development Alaska Community Database Online


History and map graphic used with permission from the Alaska Department of Community and Economic Development