The Cordova Rose is a landlocked barge that was converted to a guest lodge located on Odiak Slough in Prince William Sound, 150 miles (242 km) southeast of Anchorage and 0.5 miles (0.8 km) south of Cordova, Alaska. The mudflats surrounding the lodge were filled and a lighthouse named “Odiak Pharos” was added in the 1970s. The lighthouse is an official navigational aid listed by the U.S. Coast Guard and is the northernmost lighthouse in the United States.
Cordova was the southern terminus of the Copper River and Northwestern Railway that operated between the Kennecott copper mines and the dock facilities at Cordova from 1911 to 1938. Almost two decades before the railroad, Odiak Slough was the site of a small cannery town first called Odiak and then Eyak. By 1900, Eyak’s canneries were abandoned and in 1905, the remaining buildings were purchased by Mike Heney. Heney had overseen the construction of the White Pass and Yukon Railway and now planned to build a railroad from Prince William Sound up the Copper River to the Kennecott copper mines. A townsite was laid out at the head of Odiak Slough, and Heney named the reborn town, Cordova. Businesses sprang up around Heney’s railroad operations, and soon another townsite was established on the north shore of the slough, where most businesses moved from “Old Town” to the new townsite to make room for railroad facilities.
The Cordova Rose was originally built as a rigged scow in 1924 in Kodiak and named Berry #1. The scow worked in the Gulf of Alaska as a pile driver for fish traps and canneries and in 1964 was towed to its present location, the former site of a floating cannery. Its owners at that time were Bob and Rose Arvidson. They landlocked the barge, which eventually became the main building of the lodge, and added fill around it to create the property. Bob was a commercial fisherman and built the lighthouse to help guide him up Odiak Slough, later convincing the Coast Guard to recognize the structure as an official aid to navigation. Eldon and Jan Glein purchased the property in 1992 and subsequently renovated the buildings and created the present Cordova Rose Lodge. They sold in 1998 to the McDowells who currently operate the business. Read more here and here. Explore more of Cordova Rose here: