Wrangell History


Information about people who lived on Wrangell Island and the adjacent area will be added as this site is developed. If you have information you would like to share or links to people from Wrangell, please contact me. The more that we post online, the more we can help each other!

Wrangell Sentinel Index
Births, Deaths, People Index, and Subject Index from the Stickeen River JournalFort Wrangell News, Alaska Sentinel and Wrangell Sentinel. Please note that the AS and WS indexing is very limited. If you have items to add, please contact me.

The following people are being researched. If you have information, please contact me.

William King Lear

William King Lear was one of many who called Fort Wrangel home in the 1800’s. He came as the post sutler about 1868 and departed Wrangell about 1902 for the Seattle, Washington area where he lived until he died. Lear served as Postmaster for a number of years in the late 1800’s. He was well-known in Fort Wrangel and owned a great deal of property at one time—including the Fort Wrangel facility.

Father: Major Wm. H. Lear Mother: Isabella (?) Almira(?)
Brother: Lt. Clinton W. Lear

He married Ellen (Tsawatha) in 1856 at Hood River, OR. They had a daughter, Isabella. Lear left Ellen at Fort Cascades. She later married Amos Underwood, Underwood, WA.

Anyone having information about Lear’s family is asked to please contact me. There are family members in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest who are also interested in knowing more about his family.

John C. Callbreath John was from New York. He was a merchant at Telegraph Creek. British Columbia. He was also involved in a fish hatchery at McHenry Inlet, near Fort Wrangel as well as operated the river boat, ALASKAN to transport his goods from Fort Wrangel to Telegraph Creek as well as his hatchery. His diaries and letterpress books are a great insight into life in the Stikine Territory and at Fort Wrangel during the 1800’s which I have purchased from University of Washington on microfilm.

William Green Thomas Wm. G. (as he was known) left Missouri for the Oregon Territory with his family in the early 1850’s. DOB 1/19/1851. His family crossed the Blue Mountains near Pendleton, Oregon.    Thomas was deputy Collector of Customs at Fort Wrangel and at Kodiak. He later became U.S. Commissioner at Fort Wrangel. He married Lyda McAvoy, who was related to Rev. S. Hall Young. After Lyda’s death, he married Ida F. Swift. His parents were Thomas Turpin (or Terpin) Thomas and Nancy (Curl) Thomas. They lived at Scio, Oregon at one time. Family members would be interested in knowing more.

R.D. Crittenden Col. R.D. Crittenden was a southern gentleman who came to Alaska after residing in California for a time. During his residence in California, he served in the State Legislature. Crittenden served as the Deputy Collector of Customs at Fort Wrangel for a time. He was sought out for legal advice by the citizens of Fort Wrangel. I found that I am possibly related to Crittenden through Gen. Nathaniel Greene. Crittend died at Wrangell about 1902 and is buried in the Indian Cemetery there. His name is etched in a slab of rock that marks his grave site.

W.E. Parrott DOB 12/1861 in Oregon. Parents: Joseph and Elenor (Fish) Parrott. Sister: Jessie Mae White, Yakima, WA. Parrot farmed an island located at the mouth of the Stikine River. He died at Wrangell in 1928 and is buried in the cemetery there, although his grave is unmarked.

Kyng J. Johansen From Norway, he went to Chile in 1890, and then on to Astoria, Oregon in 1892 and finally arrive at Fort Wrangell.

Bruno Grief Bruno came from Saxony, Germany. He owned the Fort Wrangel Brewery, a prominent fixture on Main Street.