Barrow is one of the largest Eskimo settlements and the seat of the 88,000-square-mile North Slope Borough, the world’s largest municipal government. It is also the farthest north frontier settlement in the United States. Traditionally, Barrow is known as Ukpeagvik, “place where owls are hunted.” Barrow takes its name from Point Barrow, named for Sir John Barrow of the British Admiralty by Captain Beechey of the Royal Navy in 1825. Beechey had been assigned the task of plotting the Arctic coastline of North America in the HMS Blossom. Barrow was incorporated as a first-class city in 1959.
The Will Rogers and Wiley Post
Monument, dedicated in 1982 to commemorate the 1935 airplane crash of
the American humorist and the famous pilot is located across from the
airport. The accident happened 15 miles southwest of Barrow where the
men had landed seeking directions to Barrow, a planned stop on their
trip from Fairbanks to Siberia. Upon takeoff their plane rose to 50
feet, stalled and then plunged into a river below, killing both men.
Two monuments, both on the National Register of Historic Places, are
located where the men died.
Location: On the Chukchi Sea coast, the community is located 10 miles southwest of Point Barrow which is the northernmost point of the United States; 725 air miles from Anchorage, 3 hours by jet via Fairbanks.
Access: Scheduled jet service from Anchorage and Fairbanks, air taxi service.
Accommodations: Four hotels (100+ rooms); six restaurants (seating for 370). Food and most supplies, Native arts and crafts.
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