Park History

Selected Documents and Reports


Crown Jewel of the North: An Administrative History of Denali


The park administrative history is the definitive story of Denali National Park and Preserve. Published in two volumes (2006 for the first, 2008 for the second), they explore the circumstances surrounding the creation of this park; its early and modern management challenges; and the colorful characters who have called this area home.

The two volumes combined are 90 MB, and so they have been broken into the following sections for ease of use:

Volume 1


Volume II


Volume I (complete, 10 mb)
Volume II (complete, 63 mb)


Further Reading

Showing results 1-5 of 12

  • Denali National Park & Preserve

    Abbie Joseph

    black and white image of man, woman and two kids in front of a log cabin

    Born in the late 1800s, Abbie Joseph lived until 1986. Interviews at the end of her life provide a window to the past, putting a personal touch to the traditional subsistence lifestyle Alaska Natives have lived for thousands of years, and which continues today. Read more

  • Denali National Park & Preserve

    Fannie Quigley

    black and white historic image of a woman sitting by a cabin

    Fannie Quigley - entrepreneur, miner and self-sufficient pioneer - embraced the hardworking lifestyle needed to thrive in the Kantishna during the early 1900s. During a long life in what eventually became part of Denali National Park, Fannie grew to embody the qualities of an Alaskan sourdough. Read more

  • Denali National Park & Preserve

    Florence Collins

    historic image of a young woman standing by a world war two era plane

    Florence Collins found adventure and fulfillment in Alaska. An aviator, geologist and mother, she lived much of her life in the remote Lake Minchumina community, near what eventually became the far northwestern corner of Denali National Park and Preserve. Read more

  • Denali National Park & Preserve

    Going for the Gold in Kantishna

    black and white image of three men standing near a hydraulic pipe spewing water into a creek

    In 1903, when Judge James Wickersham attempted the first climb of Mount McKinley, the American public knew little about the region. Although unsuccessful in his expedition, he found a little gold along the way and staked four claims. Alaska, having experienced both major and minor gold rushes for the previous twenty years, was primed for another rush. By 1904, prospectors flocked to the region. Read more

  • Denali National Park & Preserve

    Historic and Contemporary Ethnographic Landscapes of Denali National Park

    black and white image of ten adults and two kids near wooden buildings

    The land in and around Denali comprises part of the aboriginal homeland of five Northern Athabascan groupsDena’ina, Koyukon, Lower Tanana, Upper Kuskokwim, and Western Ahtna. The affiliation of five Alaska Native groups with one national park is unique and illustrates the rich and diverse cultural heritage of the Denali area. Read more

Tags: history , DENA , denali