Downtown Chicken in 2006
Location of Chicken, Alaska
|Census Area||Southeast Fairbanks|
|• Total||115.4 sq mi (298.9 km2)|
|• Land||115.4 sq mi (298.9 km2)|
|• Water||0 sq mi (0 km2)|
|Elevation||1,677 ft (511 m)|
|• Total||7 |
|Time zone||Alaska (AKST) (UTC-9)|
|• Summer (DST)||AKDT (UTC-8)|
|GNIS feature ID||1400245|
Chicken is a census-designated place (CDP) in Southeast Fairbanks Census Area, Alaska, United States. Chicken is a community founded on gold mining and is one of the few surviving gold rush towns in Alaska. The population was 7 at the 2010 Census. However, usually year round, there are 17 inhabitants. Due to mining, Chicken's population peaks during the summer. It has frequently been noted on lists of unusual place names.
Chicken was settled by gold miners in the late 1800s and in 1902 the local post office was established requiring a community name. Due to the prevalence of ptarmigan in the area that name was suggested as the official name for the new community. However, the spelling could not be agreed on and Chicken was used to avoid embarrassment. A portion of Chicken, with buildings from the early 1900s and the F.E. Company Dredge No. 4 (Pedro Dredge) are listed on the National Register of Historical Places. Chicken is the outpost for the 40 Mile mining district. There are still active gold mines in this area. Enough gold was mined here to make it worthwhile to haul huge gold dredges to this remote location. There are still several inactive gold dredges in the Chicken area.
Chicken has one notable former inhabitant: Anne Hobbs Purdy, who was a teacher and co-author of the book "Tisha" (together with Robert Specht, Bantam Books), lived here for one year in the late 1920s. Her book tells her story in the Alaskan wilderness and how she faces the difficulties of a close-knit community, prejudices against natives, and the harsh winter.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 115.4 square miles (299 km2), all of it land.
There is a United States Post Office for Chicken.
There is no local telephone exchange service in Chicken.
As of the census of 2000, there were 17 people, 6 households, and 4 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 0.1 people per square mile (0.1/km²). There were 21 housing units at an average density of 0.2 per square mile (0.1/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 100.00% White.
There were 6 households out of which 50.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 66.7% were married couples living together, 16.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 16.7% were non-families. 16.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.83 and the average family size was 3.00.
In the CDP the population was spread out with 29.4% under the age of 18, 35.3% from 25 to 44, 29.4% from 45 to 64, and 5.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 88.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 50.0 males.
The median income for a household in the CDP was $66,250, and the per capita income for the town was $65,400. None of the population was below the poverty line.
- Thompson, George E. (2009). You Live Where?: Interesting and Unusual Facts about where We Live. iUniverse. p. 7.
- Gallant, Frank K. (2012). A Place Called Peculiar: Stories about Unusual American Place-Names. Courier Dover Publications. p. 7.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
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