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Tracing Ancestors from the Klondike Gold Rush
Are you seeking an individual who passed through this area during the Klondike Gold Rush? Perhaps the person had a business here or was involved in local affairs?
This research resource list is an aid for starting your search. Please note, records of the gold rush era are relatively few and often fragmented. There were few governmental agencies in Alaska during the Klondike gold rush. Record-keeping was often minimal or non-existent. Many records have been lost or are incomplete. There are many resources for which indexes have not been compiled which makes research time consuming and difficult.
Due to limited budgets, many public institutions do not have the staff to do your research for you. Please contact each institution directly for its research policy and for records contained within its collections. Be sure to call or write for an appointment so they can better serve you.
Good luck in your research!
Below you will find various references to genealogy items, both on the Internet and in more traditional format. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have additional questions.
Several methods are established to help track a family’s genealogy. Contacts we know of are listed below.
Sources on Alaskan and Yukon Gold Rushes and Gold Rush Communities resource guide published by Alaska Historical Society:
History & Archaeology
Guide to references to 130,000 pioneers:
Alaska & Polar Regions Dept.
Visit this site, look around, and try the link to CC Filson's Ghosts of the Yukon where you will be able to search names. This site also provides links to historical records and an overview of the gold rush.
If you know correct names, dates, and other details try:
Bureau of Vital Statistics
The British Columbia Archives has placed information on their website. This includes the Births Registration Index for the Gold -Rush period (1872-1896), and the Marriage Registration Index for the period (1872-1921), as well as the Death Registration Index period (1872-1976).
Yukon Bureau of Vital Statistics
If you are sure the person passed through Skagway contact:
Skagway City Museums "Trail of '98"
Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park
Alaska State Library
National Archives and Records Administration Pacific Alaska Region
There are a number of sites on the internet that list resources and have easy-to-use databases of names of people who went north to Alaska and Canada during the gold rush.
The most comprehensive site on further research is How To Find Your Gold Rush Relative:
The Klondike and Alaska Gold Rushes(1896-1914)
The Blacks in Alaska History Project website contains lists of black gold miners, the men of the Co. L 24th Infantry and a photograph collection.
Alaska History Project
The Valdez Museum has put information and images related to the gold rush on-line, including 2,900 names of people who were known to have either passed through or lived in Valdez in 1897-1898.
The Dawson City Museum has put 80,000 genealogical records on-line including records of the Northwest Mounted Police, Yukon Order of Pioneers, Palm Sunday Avalanche victims and a variety of other genealogical records.
The British Columbia Archives has put on-line the births registration index (18720-1896), marriage registration index (1872-1921) and the death registration index (1872-1976).
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