Category Archives: Jukebox

Have you checked out Project Jukebox lately?

Project Jukebox provides online access to audio and video recordings, transcripts, maps, historic photographs and films from across Alaska.


Project Jukebox

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New Jukebox!

The Oral History Program at Elmer E. Rasmuson Library at the University of Alaska Fairbanks is pleased to announce completion of the Cold War in Alaska: Nike Missile Sites Project Jukebox, available on-line at

People who visit this site can listen to oral history recordings with veterans who worked at Nike Missile Sites in Anchorage and Fairbanks in the 1960s, as well as with experts on the effects of the Cold War on Alaska. You can hear about damage to the missile sites in Anchorage from the 1964 Earthquake, and what it was like working with nuclear warheads. There are stories about spies, airplanes being shot down, and the role Alaska played in the Cold War.

This project was supported by funding from the Alaska Historical Commission.

For more information about the project, please contact:

Leslie McCartney, Curator of Oral History, University of Alaska Fairbanks    (907) 474-7737

Karen Brewster, Research Associate, University of Alaska Fairbanks    (907) 474-6672

cold war jukebox_publicity announcement

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Thank you!

Thank you to everyone who came out and attended Leslie McCartney’s  presentation at the Tanana-Yukon Historical Society’s (TYHS) monthly meeting .

For more information on the TYHS:


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Open House pics

Thanks to all who supported our Open House last week. Please join us for our next Archives Month event tomorrow: Pioneer Voices: Highlights of the Tanana-Yukon Historical Society Audio Collection presented by Leslie McCartney, oral history curator. The talk is part of the Tanana-Yukon Historical Society’s monthly meeting.


Please contact Leslie McCartney at or call 474-7737 for more information.

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Open House!

The Alaska and Polar Regions Collections & Archives are kicking off Archives month by hosting an Open House on Tuesday, October 8 from 4:30 pm – 7:00 pm. There will be tours of the archives stacks, vault tours, a Project Jukebox listening station and curators and archivists on hand to discuss their collections. Please join us, this event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. Begin your tour in the Research Room located on level 2 of the Rasmuson Library.

Contact 907-474-2791 or for more information.

Open House flier

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Re: Exit Glacier Jukebox now available!

Exit Glacier Header

The Oral History Program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and Kenai Fjords National Park are proud to announce the completion of the Exit Glacier/Kenai Fjords National Park Project Jukebox, available online at People who visit the website can access oral, visual and map resources that offer a rich understanding of the history of how people have used Exit Glacier and the Resurrection River Valley.

This project highlights conversations with twenty-three long-term residents of Seward, Alaska about their lives, and traditional activities in the area around Exit Glacier from 1950-1980. The people interviewed are a diverse group, ranging from skiers, hikers and mountaineers, to snowmachiners, hunters, dogmushers, National Park Service managers, and construction workers on the road to Exit Glacier that now provides easy access to the glacier and park nature center. Other topics discussed in the interviews include: life in Seward and how it has changed; the 1964 Earthquake; construction of the road to Exit Glacier; changes in the glacier and the local animal populations; a snowmachine tour operation on Harding Icefield; hunting; and effects of the establishment of Kenai Fjords National Park in 1980.

During the interviews, people used colored pens to mark the areas they used on USGS maps. These maps are visible on this website as interactive Google maps.

Project Jukebox has helped preserve stories from aspects of Seward’s recent history that may not be well-known and have made them accessible to the public. The information discussed in these interviews will be of interest to both local Seward residents wanting to know more about land use activities in their community, as well as to visitors interested in better understanding the community. This project was supported by funding from the National Park Service.

For more information about this project, please contact:
Karen Brewster at the Project Jukebox Office, University of Alaska Fairbanks., (907) 474-6672. Shannon Kovac, Cultural Resource Manager, Kenai Fjords National Park, Seward, Alaska., (907) 422-0541.

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Re: Tourism in Alaska

In spring, Alaskans’ thoughts lightly turn to …tourism? Yes, indeed. May is traditionally the kickoff of the summer tourist season here in Fairbanks which runs from mid-May to mid-September. Here is pioneer businessman Chuck West talking about how he got into the tourism business in 1947:

Let me see now. I go back just a bit. ’47, that same summer, everything happened all at once it seemed like. While I was still on, across on First Avenue, I had two ladies walk in to see me–schoolteachers. And they said they wanted to know if there’s any sightseeing tours. And I said, “Well not that I know of. What do you want to see?” And they said, “Well, whatever there is to see.” And I said, “Well, I’ve got a Plymouth Sedan out here, 1936 Plymouth; I’ll take you around, show you what there is to see.” I, by then had two girls [Celia Hunter and Ginny Wood] working for me. I said, “Girls, mind the office. I’m going to take these ladies for a little ride around the area.” I put ‘em in the back seat of the Plymouth, took them out to the University of Alaska and showed them the Museum out there. Charles Bunnell was still there. And went around Farmer’s Loop, and a guy named Paul Elbert had a farm there, I went up and got a bucket of water from Paul and a salt shaker and went down in his garden with his permission, pulled some radishes out of the ground. They were just beautiful, big, delicious radishes–washed ’em off, salted ’em, gave ’em to the ladies to eat. And they were crisp, juicy radishes like the ladies had never seen anything like it. And I took them up on the hill, let them pick some blueberries, and back into town, showed ‘em the gold dredges around Ester and so forth…had a flat tire, got eaten up by mosquitoes. RON INOUYE: People loved that experience. CHUCK WEST:They loved it. Came back to the Nordale Hotel, stopped on the way to the hotel, and I said, “Well, how did you like it?” They said, “Wonderful, what do we owe you?” I said I don’t know; you’re my first sightseeing passengers. How about $20?” They handed me a $20 bill. I said, “Great.” So rushed back to the office and said, “Girls–we’re in the sightseeing business. Get a sign made- ­”SIGHTSEEING – $10.”

To hear and/or read more about Chuck West,the company that eventually became Westours, and the role of aviation in developing tourism in Alaska, click here to go the Pioneer Aviators Jukebox. Depending on your browser, you may need to download additional plug-ins to play the audio.

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Homer Communities of Memory Jukebox Project

The Oral History Program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks is proud to announce the completion of the Homer Communities of Memory Jukebox Project, available online at This project celebrates the community and the history of Homer as seen through the eyes of those present during a series of storytelling sessions held at Land’s End Resort in April 1996. They include stories from Ralph Broshes, Marcee Gray, Mark Marette, Sandy Miller, Bob Moore, Don Ronda, Dave Seaman, Gert Seekins, Diana Tillion, Carolyn Turkington, and Wilma Williams. Themes include: coming to Homer, making a living, homesteading, commercial fishing, dealing with the natural environment, tourism, the meeting of cultures, changes in Homer, and appreciation of what makes Homer special.

This Project Jukebox preserves and makes accessible to the public a valuable record of Alaskan history and the experiences of people whose stories often are not heard outside of their own community. The testimonies in this project highlight a love for Homer, and provide a living link to the nature of life in the lower Kenai Peninsula sixteen years ago.

The original “Communities of Memory” project in the mid-1990s was a project funded by the Alaska Humanities Forum designed to collect stories from Alaskans that represent the meaning of community. It provided an opportunity for people in communities around Alaska to share their memories and to reflect on what made their community special. Storytelling sessions were held in Juneau, Fairbanks, Nome, Unalaska, Wasilla, Homer, Kotzebue, Wasilla, Bethel, and Kenai/Soldotna. All the sessions were videotaped and many of these recordings are stored at the Oral History Office in the Alaska and Polar Regions Collections at Elmer E. Rasmuson Library at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Jukebox projects have also been created from the Fairbanks, Nome, Unalaska, Bethel, and Juneau story-telling sessions, available at

This project is supported in part by a grant from the Alaska Humanities Forum and the National Endowment for the Humanities, a federal agency. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this website do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

For more information about this project, please contact:
Karen Brewster ( or Marla Statscewich ( at the Project Jukebox Office
Phone: 474-6672

Thanks, Karen

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November exhibits!!!

In recognition of Native American Heritage Month and Aviation Month the Alaska and Polar Regions Collections & Archives has four exhibits on display on level 2.  These displays include original materials and reproductions from the Archives, Oral History, Alaska Film Collection , Alaska Book and Periodicals collection and from Rare Books.

Displays in the Alaska Collection & the Archives Research Room

In the display case just outside the Reading Room on the second floor, you can hear Mary TallMountain reading from her poem, “Prayer Wheel for William.”


Check it out!



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Judges of Alaska Project Jukebox now available on-line.

The Alaska and Polar Regions Collections and Archives at Elmer E. Rasmuson Library, University of Alaska is pleased to announce completion of our latest multi-media oral history website:

Judges of Alaska Project Jukebox (

This website tells the story of the formation of the Alaska Court System through first-hand accounts of what it means to be a judge or magistrate in Alaska. The judicial history of Alaska goes back to the territorial days when court may have been held in a roadhouse, aboard a revenue cutter or maybe even out on the trail. US Commissioners deciding these cases often did not have legal backgrounds. Starting with statehood in 1959, Alaska’s court system became more formalized and its judiciary more professional. The experiences of our state’s early judges shed light on the social, political, and cultural fabric of life in Alaska in a new way. It provides a slice of Alaskan history that few people have access to or understanding of. Knowing how Alaska’s justice system has developed can enlighten future decisions as our state faces continued social, political, cultural and economic change.

The Project Jukebox website features oral histories, historic film clips, and still photographs to highlight various aspects of the history of Alaska’s court system. Topics include: establishment and early days of the various aspects of the court system, the judiciary article, judicial selection and retention, the day to day life of being a judge, joys and challenges of being a judge, relationships with the community, and rural justice.

You can access the site at

For further information, contact Project Jukebox at (907) 474-6672.

This project is supported in whole or in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services through the Library Services and Technology Act, administered by the Alaska State Library. And was done in collaboration with the Alaska Court System and the Alaska Bar Association Historians Committee.

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