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North bank of Ptarmigan Creek

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Ptarmigan Creek Cabin, North bank of Ptarmigan Creek, Fort Greely, AK



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Item Title


Location
North bank of Ptarmigan Creek, AK

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Created/Published
Documentation compiled after 1933.

Notes
Survey number HABS AK-189
Significance: Located on the north bank of Ptarmigan Creek, a western tributary of Delta Creek, and approximately 2 miles north of Triden Glacier, Ptarmigan Creek Cabin is a surviving example of a simple prospector's cabin in central Alaska. The cabin site is situated on federal government property controlled by Ft. Greely, about 30 miles southwest of Delta Junction, Alaska. The site includes the intact cabin, a small screened smoke house, a dilapidated log structure, an outhouse which is completely missing now, and a food cache structure of which only the four fallen poles remain. These structures are situated on a narrow bench and clearing overlooking the creek. It is probably that the intact cabin was built during the winter of 1928-29 by Logan W. Varne and Ralph P. Mackie. The cabin has an inscription carved on the exterior south wall just west of the entrance door that says "Paradise Inn" in large letters. Under it is also the inscription "Logan W. Varne \ Ralph P. Mackie Winter of 1928-1928," also "3-6-1929." The 3-6-1929 may mark the completion date of the cabin. The bulk of empty tin cans found on the site relate to the early 1930's. It is presumed that the cabin served as headquarters for hardrock mining activities based on artifacts and tools found there. After 1935 the cabin was apparently infrequently visited by trappers and military personnel. It is extremely isolated from any other recorded structures, roads, or known trails.

Collection
Historic American Buildings Survey (Library of Congress)

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