Welcome to Denali Borough, Alaska
A Proud Part of the Genealogy Trails
Welcome to the Genealogy Trails website for Denali 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
Location and Climate
Denali Borough lies in Interior Alaska, between the Fairbanks North Star and Mat-Su Boroughs. It lies about 110
miles south of Fairbanks on the Parks Highway. 70% of the Borough is the Denali National Park, home to Mount McKinley,
the highest mountain in North America, at 20,320'. It lies at approximately 63.850000° North Latitude and -148.966667°
West Longitude . The area encompasses 12,749.7 sq. miles of land and 24.9 sq. miles of water. The Borough experiences
a cold, continental climate. Temperatures range from -3 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. The average annual precipitation
is 12.7 inches, and average annual snowfall is 49.3 inches.
History, Culture and Demographics
The earliest inhabitants were nomadic Indians who fished, trapped and hunted through the Interior. The first non-Native
settlers were miners, who established a camp at Hoseanna Creek near Healy (later known as Lignite Creek) prior
to 1902. Formation of the Denali National Park in 1917 and construction of the Alaska Railroad brought additional
settlers to the area in the early 1920s. Coal mining began in the area in 1922. Clear Air Force Base, the Usibelli
Coal Mine and tourism at the Denali Park have brought growth and development. The Borough was incorporated in December
The population of the community consists of 8.6% Alaska Native or part Native. Nearly all residents live along
the Parks Highway.
Communities located within the Borough include:
Anderson, Cantwell, Ferry, Healy and McKinley Park.
Healy is the borough seat.
The Usibelli Coal Mine, Clear Air Force Station, Golden Valley Electric Assoc., the Borough School District, the
National Park Service, and tourism-related industries and road services provide the majority of employment in the
Denali Borough. Denali National Park is a major visitor attraction; over 350,000 visitors use the Park for recreation
annually. Hotels, cabins, RV campgrounds, rafting guides, sightseeing, restaurants and gift shops serve visitors.
Nearly 40% of the summer employees in the area come from outside Alaska, and another 42% from outside the borough.
The George Parks Highway provides access to Anchorage and Fairbanks year-round. The Denali Highway is open only
during the summer, from Cantwell to Paxson, to provide a shorter route to the Alaska Highway. The Alaska Railroad
also serves Interior Alaska. There are several airstrips within the Borough. Tours by bus, aircraft and helicopter
operate during summer months.