Nuchek, Port Etches

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Nuchek, Port Etches

by | Jul 7, 2018

Nuchek is an abandoned village at Port Etches on Hinchinbrook Island in Prince William Sound, about 56 miles (90 km) south-southwest of Valdez and 35 miles (56 km) southwest of Cordova, Alaska. The village was first documented by Captain James Cook during his Voyage of Discovery in the Gulf of Alaska in 1778. The name is derived from Nuuciq in the Eyak native language.

In 1793, Russian fur traders with the Lebedev-Lastochkin Company, a predecessor to the Russian-American Company, established a permanent trading post and a Russian Orthodox church here later called Fort Saint Constantine. The Alaska Commercial Company had a trading center at Nuchek that served all of southcentral Alaska through much of the 19th century. In 1928, after the death of Nuchek’s last chief, the remaining Alutiiq people left the village. 

The Chugach Alaska Corporation now runs the Nuchek Spirit Camp at this site. The camp is designed for children and elders of the Chugach people to spend time together and raise awareness of their history and culture. Activities include gathering and preparing subsistence foods, language lessons, woodcarving, beading, storytelling, and traditional singing and dancing. Read more here and here. Explore more of Nuchek and Port Etches here:

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