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George Sullivan

George Sullivan was interviewed by Mary Larson on June 16, 1990 in Kennecott, Alaska during the Kennecott Kids reunion. In this interview, he talks about his time working for the mine, some scary experiences in the mill, and what life was like at the mine in 1937.

Digital Asset Information

Archive #: Oral History 95-81

Project: Wrangell-St.Elias National Park
Date of Interview: Jun 16, 1990
Narrator(s): George Sullivan
Interviewer(s): Mary Larson
Location of Interview:
Location of Topic:
Funding Partners:
National Park Service
Alternate Transcripts
There is no alternate transcript for this interview.

After clicking play, click on a section to navigate the audio or video clip.


1) How he came to work at Kennecott

2) Closure of the Kennecott mine

3) The Latouche Mine and travel from Valdez to Kennecott

4) Alaska Road Commission work

5) The impact of World War II

6) Working in Valdez, and the lack of diseases in Kennecott

7) Recollections of Kennecott

8) Almost falling into a grizzly crusher

9) The preservation and restoration of mining facilities

10) A story told by Fred Seltenreich at the reunion

11) The Kennecott Museum and copper mine at Salt Lake City

12) How he got into politics

13) Development of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

14) Story about his father and uncle on the Chilkoot Trail

15) Chilkoot Trail story continued, and more family history

Click play, then use Sections or Transcript to navigate the interview.

After clicking play, click a section of the transcript to navigate the audio or video clip.


Section 1: Valdez\ Alaska Road Commission\ Kennecott\ mine\ Bonanza Mine\ Jumbo Mine\ Erie Mine\ ore -- buckets\ grizzly crusher

Section 2: Kennecott Mine -- closure 1938\ United Mine Workers -- role in closure\ activities -- baseball, pool hall, card room\ McCarthy -- go to drink, etc.\ Kelly, Joe\ Wold, Sig\ Humphreys, ?\ Fairbanks Exploration Company

Section 3: Latouche Mine -- between Valdez and Seward\ Guggenheim, ?\ mining -- copper\ Karabelnikoff, Bill\ Karabelnikoff, George\ Alaska Steamship\ Cordova\ Chitina\ O'Neil, Jack\ Price Creek\ Peterson, Mrs. -- played piano at silent movie house

Section 4: Alaska Road Commission -- learning experience\ transfer company\ Anchorage -- military base\ Ghezzi, Al\ Alaska Freight Lines\ Valdez\ Knudson, Morrison\ Northway -- airport\ Tanacross -- airport\ Nabesna\ Slana\ Nabesna -- base

Section 5: World War II-- lend lease airplanes\ Valdez -- troops to build Alaska Highway\ White River, Canada\ Tanacross\ Tok -- tent community during road building\ Alaska Road Commission\ Thompson Pass

Section 6: Valdez -- airport\ Wilciy, Dan\ Kennecott -- disease free\ Dr. Gillespie

Section 7: miners -- Kennecott\ McCarthy\ Petrokof, Eagen

Section 8: Watsjold, Oscar -- Seward\ grizzly crusher\ bucket -- ore

Section 9: mine -- facilities\ mines -- underground\ mines -- copper\ Kennecott -- cabins

Section 10: Seltenreich, Fred\ Chitina River\ Kennecott -- reunion\ Watsjold, Oscar\ Kennecott -- everything left intact

Section 11: Salt Lake City -- Kennecott Museum\ Bernhisel, Jack -- (former) Senior VP Kennecott\ Salt Lake City\ mine -- open pit copper\ Huddleston, Pop\ Simmons, Earl\ Valdez\ Goldstream\ Cook, Jack

Section 12: Valdez -- mother, mayor of Valdez 1934\ Father -- U.S. Marshal, 3rd Judicial division\ World War II -- Aleutian Islands\ Deputy U.S. Marshall\ Coghill, Jack\ flood control\ Healy -- mine strike\ Nenana\ Ghezzi, Al -- trucking\ Fairbanks City Council\ Anchorage -- 1964 state legislature\ Anchorage -- mayor 1967-1982

Section 13: Glennallen\ Chitina\ preservation versus park\ Hickel, Walter\ Cordova\ Egan\ Judge Dimond -- Valdez\ Wheeler, Mrs.

Section 14: Project 80's -- log home restoration\ family background Chilkoot trail -- 1898\ Sullivan, Harvey -- father\ Sullivan, Joe -- uncle

Section 15: Murray -- mother's maiden name\ cannery\ U.S. Marshall\ Valdez -- post mistress\ life history -- legislature\ U.S. Army -- Aleutian Islands\ Kennecott