Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Day at the Museums–Valdez, Alaska

We headed to Valdez shortly before noon to get some mail sent off at the post office and to have lunch at the Alaska Halibut House.  Our GPS didn’t want to find a post office any closer than 90+ miles, so we decided to have lunch first.  We both had the cod fish and chips and it was good…sorry, no photos as we were too busy eating.  After our meal, we found the post office and drove to the Remembering Old Valdez Exhibit.  This museum has several  scale models of the town as it appeared prior to the 1964 earthquake that was 8.6 on the Richter scale and 9.2 on the Moment Magnitude Scale.  This photo is of a 1921 Ford Model T Chemical Fire Engine.


Attached to this jeep, is a saw (without blade attached) used to cut lumber.


After going through the exhibits, we watched a 37 minute film called Between the Glacier and the Sea.  It featured some live film taken by a camera on The Chena, a ship at the docks in Valdez when the earthquake hit.  There were also documentaries from various people who lived in town at the time who talked about their experience during the quake.  When it was determined that the old town of Valdez was not safe, the people took on the project to move it to a new location four miles away within 3 years.  That feat was accomplished in 2 years, and what was left of old town Valdez was destroyed by fire or other means.  Rather than rebuilding a home, some people chose to move their houses to the new location as did some businesses.  The Eagles lodge pictured below was moved from old town Valdez.


Our next stop was the Valdez Museum in town.  A purchase of a ticket to visit one museum covers you at the next museum also if visited within a few days.  At the Valdez Museum, we were greeted by their curator outside the building in the shade of a boat.


Here is the boat shading the curator…on the left is another old relic (not necessarily belonging to the museum Smile)


The information below is about the job of a pig on the Alaska Pipeline.  The next photo is of the actual pig.




The museum had this rare mount of a North Pacific Fur Fish.


Without going into a lot of detail, the Valdez Museum has exhibits covering the time frame from the early natives (Athasbascans, Inuits, etc.) in the area up to modern times including the gold rush, 1964 earthquake and Exxon Valdez oil spill.  We found both museums to be worthy of a visit.

1 comment:

Sharon Del Rosario said...

Thanks for the virtual visit to Valdez. We'll be there soon. Slow down, we're catching up!