Kotzebue, Alaska

Kotzebue, Alaska

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Kotzebue, Alaska

imagesize = 250px
image_caption = Aerial view of Kotzebue
settlement_type = City
nickname =


|right|Location of Kotzebue, Alaska
mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location of Kotzebue in Alaska

mapsize1 =
map_caption1 =

pushpin_label_position = right
pushpin_mapsize = 300
pushpin_map_caption =
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = United States
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_name1 = Alaska
subdivision_type2 = Borough
subdivision_name2 = Northwest Arctic
government_type =
leader_title =
leader_name =
established_date =
area_magnitude = 1 E9
area_total_km2 = 74.2
area_land_km2 = 69.9
area_water_km2 = 4.3
area_rank =
area_total_sq_mi = 28.7
area_land_sq_mi = 27.0
area_water_sq_mi = 1.7
elevation_m = 6
elevation_ft = 20
latd = 66 |latm = 53 |lats = 50 |latNS = N
longd = 162 |longm = 35 |longs = 8 |longEW = W
population_as_of = 2000
population_note =
population_total = 3082
population_density_km2 = 44.1
timezone = AKST
utc_offset = -9
timezone_DST = AKDT
utc_offset_DST = -8
latitude = 66°53'50" N
longitude = 162°35'8" W
website = http://kotzpdweb.tripod.com/city/index.html
postal_code_type =
postal_code =
area_code = 907
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 02-41830
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = [Gnis3|1413378 1413378]
footnotes =

Kotzebue is a city in Northwest Arctic Borough in the U.S. state of Alaska. According to 2005 Census Bureau estimates, the population of the city was 3,237.cite web | date = June 21 2006 | url = http://www.census.gov/popest/cities/files/SUB-EST2005-04-02.csv | title = Annual Estimates of the Population for All Incorporated Places in Alaska | format = CSV | work = 2005 Population Estimates | publisher = U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division | accessmonthday = November 9 | accessyear = 2006]

Kotzebue gets its name from the Kotzebue Sound, which was named after Otto von Kotzebue, who explored the sound while searching for the Northwest Passage in the service of Russia in 1818.


Kotzebue is located at coor dms|66|53|50|N|162|35|8|W|city (66.897192, -162.585444).GR|1

Kotzebue lies on a gravel spit at the end of the Baldwin Peninsula in the Kotzebue Sound. It is 53 km (33 miles) north of the arctic circle on Alaska's western coast.

Kotzebue is about 30+ miles from Noatak, Kiana, and other nearby smaller towns.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 28.7 square miles (74.2 km²), of which 27.0 square miles (69.9 km²) is land, and 1.6 square miles (4.3 km²) (5.76%) is water.


As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 3,082 people, 889 households, and 656 families residing in the city. The population density was 114.1 people per square mile (44.1/km²). There were 1,007 housing units at an average density of 37.3/sq mi (14.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 19.47% White, 0.32% Black or African American, 71.19% Native American, 1.82% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.78% from other races, and 6.36% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.17% of the population.

There were 889 households out of which 50.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.1% were married couples living together, 17.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.1% were non-families. 19.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 2.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.40 and the average family size was 3.93.

In the city the population was spread out with 39.8% under the age of 18, 8.5% from 18 to 24, 30.4% from 25 to 44, 17.2% from 45 to 64, and 4.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 26 years. For every 100 females there were 102.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 104.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $57,163, and the median income for a family was $58,068. Males had a median income of $42,604 versus $36,453 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,289. About 9.2% of families and 13.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.9% of those under age 18 and 6.0% of those age 65 or over.


There is archaeological evidence that Inupiat people have lived at Kotzebue since at least the 1400s. Because of its location, Kotzebue was a trading and gathering center for the entire area. The Noatak, Selawik and Kobuk Rivers drain into the Kotzebue Sound near Kotzebue to form a center for transportation to points inland. In addition to people from interior villages, inhabitants of the Russian Far East came to trade at Kotzebue. Furs, seal-oil, hides, rifles, ammunition, and seal skins were some of the items traded. People also gathered for competitions like the current World Eskimo Olympics [http://www.weio.org/] . With the arrival of the whalers, traders, gold seekers, and missionaries the trading center expanded.

Kotzebue, known natively as "Kikiktagruk" or "Qikiqtagruk", which means "almost an island" in Inupiaq, the language of the Inupiat, which is a reference to the spit. The name of the town was later changed to Kotzebue after Baltic-German navigator Otto von Kotzebue as well as the name of the Kotzebue Sound.

Reindeer herding was introduced in the area in 1897. Although Alaska had caribou, the wild form of reindeer, the domesticated reindeer were brought to Alaska from Asia.

A United States post office was established in 1899. [Dickerson, Ora B. (1989) "120 Years of Alaska Postmasters, 1867-1987", p. 44. Scotts, MI: Carl J. Cammarata]

Kotzebue is currently the largest city in the Northwest Arctic Borough.

John Baker and Ed Iten, are both top 10 finisher in the 1,000+ mi (1,600+ km) Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, and they are currently residents of Kotzebue.

Kotzebue was a filming location for the 1991 film "Salmonberries".

Kotzebue is home to the large, non-profit organization, Maniilaq Association.


Kotzebue's Ralph Wien Memorial Airport is the one airport in the Northwest Arctic Borough with regularly-scheduled large commercial passenger aircraft service to and from Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport and the Nome Airport.


Further reading

* Anderson, Douglas D., and Robert A. Henning. "The Kotzebue Basin". Alaska geographic, v. 8, no. 3. Anchorage: Alaska Geographic Society, 1981. ISBN 0882401572
* Giddings, J. Louis, and Douglas D. Anderson. "Beach Ridge Archeology of Cape Krusenstern Eskimo and Pre-Eskimo Settlements Around Kotzebue Sound, Alaska". Washington DC: National Park Service, U.S. Dept. of the Interior, 1986.
* Lucier, Charles V., and James W. VanStone. "Traditional Beluga Drives of the Iñupiat of Kotzebue Sound, Alaska". Fieldiana, new ser., no. 25. Chicago: Field Museum of Natural History, 1995.

External links

* [http://kotzpdweb.tripod.com/city/ City of Kotzebue] official website
* [http://www.kotz.org KOTZ Radio]
* [http://www.nwarctic.org Northwest Arctic Borough School District]

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