False Pass, Alaska

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False Pass
City
False Pass looking north
False Pass looking north

Nickname(s): "The Pass"

The City of False Pass as seen from the south.
False Pass is located in Alaska
False Pass
False Pass
Location in Alaska
Coordinates: 54°49′40″N 163°23′57″W / 54.82778°N 163.39917°W / 54.82778; -163.39917
Country United States
State Alaska
Borough Aleutians East
Incorporated October 19, 1990[1]
Government
 • Mayor Tom Hoblet[2]
Area
 • Total 68.3 sq mi (176.8 km2)
 • Land 26.9 sq mi (69.6 km2)
 • Water 41.4 sq mi (107.2 km2)
Elevation 30 ft (9 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 35
Time zone Alaska (AKST) (UTC-9)
 • Summer (DST) AKDT (UTC-8)
ZIP codes 99583
Area code 907
FIPS code 02-24660
Website City Website

False Pass (Isanax̂[3] in Aleut) is a city in Aleutians East Borough, Alaska, United States. Isanax̂ (variously spelled Issannakh, Isanak etc.) is the Aleut name for present day Isanotski Strait and means gap, hole, rent, or tear in the Aleut language which was rendered as Isanotski (or Issanakskie, Isanotskoi, Isanakh etc.) in transliterated Russian. The strait appears as Исанакъ in 1802 and Исаноцкый in 1844 on Russian maps.[4][5][6] Isanotski Strait lies between the tip of the Alaska Peninsula and Unimak Island, the first of the Aleutian Islands and it connects the northern Gulf of Alaska with the Bering Sea. This strait was used for safe passage for millennia by Aleuts and later by the Russians during their occupation of the area. The strait is used today by most vessels less than 200 feet in length traveling to and from northern Alaska and points in southwest and southeast Alaska and the "lower 48" states.[7]

False Pass is an early English name for Isanotski Strait on which the City of False Pass is located. The strait was called "False Pass" by early American sailing ship captains because it was thought to be impassable for their deep draft vessels at the northern end. A salmon cannery was built on the Unimak Island side of the strait in 1919 [8] which provided the nucleus for the modern settlement. A U.S. post office with the name of False Pass was established in 1921 which gave official status to the community.[9] Commercial fishing for salmon, cod, halibut and crab continues to be the core of the community's lifestyle and economy. The city population was 35 at the 2010 census.

Geography[edit]

Boundaries of the City of False Pass
Boundaries of the City of False Pass, Alaska

False Pass is located at 54°49′40″N 163°23′57″W / 54.82778°N 163.39917°W / 54.82778; -163.39917 (54.827886, -163.399090).[10] It is near the eastern end of Unimak Island, in the Aleutian Islands chain. Part of the city (26.093 km², or 10.075 sq mi) is actually on the westernmost tip of the mainland Alaska Peninsula, across the Isanotski Strait (about 600 meters at the closest point), although that section is nearly unpopulated. The city boundaries include the abandoned villages of Morzhovoi and Ikatan.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 68.3 square miles (177 km2), of which, 26.9 square miles (70 km2) of it is land and 41.4 square miles (107 km2) of it (60.63%) is water.

Demographics[edit]

2000 Census[edit]

As of the census[11] of 2000, there were 64 people, 22 households, and 13 families residing in the city. The population density was 2.4 people per square mile (0.9/km²). There were 40 housing units at an average density of 1.5 per square mile (0.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 62.50% Native American, 26.56% White, 1.56% from other races, and 9.38% from two or more races. 1.56% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 22 households out of which 31.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 22.7% were married couples living together, 18.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.4% were non-families. 31.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.91 and the average family size was 3.79.

In the city the age distribution of the population shows 35.9% under the age of 18, 9.4% from 18 to 24, 18.8% from 25 to 44, 31.3% from 45 to 64, and 4.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 100.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 115.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $49,375, and the median income for a family was $70,625. Males had a median income of $23,750 versus $37,083 for females. The per capita income for the city was $21,465. There were 11.1% of families and 8.0% of the population living below the poverty line, including no under eighteens and 50.0% of those over 64.

Occupation categories for the 2000 census are shown in the accompanying pie chart.

Pie Chart of 2000 Census Occupations for False Pass, Alaska
2000 Census: Occupations

The community has traditionally depended upon commercial fishing, but it now employs only 24% of the workforce or 10 individuals. These individuals are boat captains and crewmen. As in many modern American communities, white collar sales/office and management positions now employ 51% of the employment positions or 21 people.[12]

Transportation[edit]

Boats and aircraft are the only way to get to False Pass. Aircraft use False Pass Airport.

Picture gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ 1996 Alaska Municipal Officials Directory. Juneau: Alaska Municipal League/Alaska Department of Community and Regional Affairs. January 1996. p. 56. 
  2. ^ "Community: False Pass". Community Database Online. Juneau: Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, Division of Community and Regional Affairs. February 11, 2014. Retrieved February 21, 2014. 
  3. ^ Bergsland, K. (1994). Aleut Dictionary. Fairbanks: Alaska Native Language Center. 
  4. ^ Vilbrekht, A.: Karta morskikh otkrytīi Rosīiskimi moreplavateliami na Tikhom i Ledovitom moriakh, 1802, Norris Peter Co., Washington, D.C., 1898, L.C.
  5. ^ Karta Ledovitago moria i Vostochnago okeana, Hydrographic Department, St. Petersburg?, 1844, L.C.
  6. ^ Baker, Marcus: Geographic Dictionary of Alaska, United States Geological Survey, Bulletin No. 299, Series F, Geography 52, Second Edition, USGPO, Washington, 1906
  7. ^ Black, Lydia (1999). The History and Ethnohistory of the Aleutians East Borough, Chapter 4: False Pass, An Ethnography, by Lydia Black & Jerry Jacka. Fairbanks, Alaska: Limestone Press. 
  8. ^ Pacific Fisherman, vol 18, p.103, M. Freeman, Portland, Oregon, 1920
  9. ^ Orth, Donald J.: Dictionary of Alaska Place Names, Geological Survey professional paper, 567, 1967, USGPO, Washington
  10. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  11. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  12. ^ Community Database Online, False Pass. http://www.dced.state.ak.us/dca/commdb/CF_BLOCK.htm, accessed 7 October 2010

Coordinates: 54°49′40″N 163°23′57″W / 54.827886°N 163.39909°W / 54.827886; -163.39909