Independence Mine Bunkhouse

View of Bunkhouse #1 and other buildings at Independence Mine
View of Bunkhouse #1 and other buildings at Independence Mine

Alaska’s Independence Mine is located in what is now the Independence Mine State Historical Park, located in Hatcher Pass. The mine was built in 1934. The mine was closed in 1943, as US involvement in World War II deemed gold mining non-essential to the war effort. Following the war, the mine was re-opened. According to the Alaska Department of Natural Resources:

“The wartime ban was lifted in 1946, but gold mining was slow to recover. After the war, gold could be sold only to the U.S. government at a fixed rate of $35 per ounce. Postwar inflation raged, and gold mining became an unprofitable venture. Finally, in January of 1951, after mining nearly 6 million dollars’ worth of gold, Independence Mine was closed by APC, and a chapter of Alaska’s gold mining history came to an end.”

In this photo, you can see Bunkhouse #1 and other support structures. In the distance is Bodenburg Butte, near the city of Palmer, Alaska. Beyond that is the towering Talkeetna Mountain range, with Pioneer Peak visible on the right edge.

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