SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


A "New" Museum for Ketchikan


August 08, 2016
Monday PM

(SitNews) Ketchikan, Alaska - Built to commemorate the centennial of the 1867 purchase of Alaska, Ketchikan's Centennial Building has been home to the Tongass Historical Museum for almost 50 years. With last week's approval to move forward on the renovation of the main floor of the Museum, the Ketchikan City Council invested in another 50 years dedicated to sharing Ketchikan's unique history and heritage.

The Centennial Building has housed and safeguarded Ketchikan’s treasured history in the form of artifacts, photographs, archives, and other important historical items. $1,256,950 in funding allows the renovation of the main floor of the Museum to move forward that will also showcase Ketchikan’s vibrant history through exhibits and public programs, and will provide Ketchikan and her visitors with accessible restrooms and an updated, welcoming facility. The funds, a combination of Public Works Sales Tax funds and Commercial Passenger Vessel funds from both the City and the Ketchikan Borough, open the doors to a bright new era for the Ketchikan Museums.

jpg A "New" Museum for Ketchikan

Ketchikan’s Centennial Building Renovation
Designed by Ketchikan-based Welsh Whiteley Architects
For a larger image click on the graphic or on the link below:

By celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Totem Heritage Center in 2016, coupled with the Tongass Historical Museum's 50th in 2017, Ketchikan Museums are honoring the town's past as a vision develops for exhibits and programs that capture what Ketchikan is to past, current and future generations.

Renovations begin at the Centennial Building on October 1st. As Dawson Construction crews demo and rebuild the main floor over the winter, museum staff are crafting a new permanent exhibit that tells Ketchikan's authentic story, one that reflects all Ketchikan has come from, showcases the richness of our home and provides a platform to record our future. A living platform that both responds and inspires.

Total Project Cost: $1,093,000 Dawson Construction bid + $163,950 contingency (15%)


September 6, 2016 - Tentative closing date of the Tongass Historical Museum. Collections staff and administrative secretary will be available via the lower level entrance by appointment only. Regular hours will continue for the Totem Heritage Center.

September 15, 2016 - Totem Heritage Center open house to celebrate the 40th anniversary and highlights 40 years of the Native Arts Studies Program.

October 1, 2016 - Dawson Construction begins demolition on the main floor of the Centennial Building. Winter hours begin at the Totem Heritage Center.


May - September 5, 2016:
Open Daily, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

September 6, 2016 - April 2017:
Closed to the public due to renovation of the main floor. Staff will be available in the lower level by appointment only. There is a moratorium on donations and research through December 2016.

On June 6, 2016, Ketchikan Museums imposed a moratorium on research and reproduction requests until December 31, 2016.

Staff are available by appointment Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Call 907-225-5600 to schedule an appointment.



Reporting & Editing by Mary Kauffman, SitNews


Source of News:

Tongass Historical Museum



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