Wales, Alaska

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For alternate meanings, see Wales (disambiguation).
Wales
Kiŋigin
City
View of the Wales Site, with the city of Wales in the background
View of the Wales Site, with the city of Wales in the background
Nickname(s): Kingegan
Wales is located in Alaska
Wales
Wales
Location in Alaska
Coordinates: 65°36′44″N 168°05′21″W / 65.61222°N 168.08917°W / 65.61222; -168.08917Coordinates: 65°36′44″N 168°05′21″W / 65.61222°N 168.08917°W / 65.61222; -168.08917
Country United States
State Alaska
Census Area Nome
Incorporated April 16, 1964[1]
Government
 • Mayor Sean Komonaseak[2]
Area
 • Total 2.8 sq mi (7.3 km2)
 • Land 2.8 sq mi (7.3 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 26 ft (8 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 145
 • Density 53.9/sq mi (20.8/km2)
Time zone Alaska (AKST) (UTC-9)
 • Summer (DST) AKDT (UTC-8)
ZIP code 99783
Area code 907
FIPS code 02-82860
GNIS feature ID 1404755, 2418870

Wales (Kiŋigin in Iñupiaq) is a city[3][4] in the Nome Census Area, Alaska, United States. At the 2010 census the population was 145.[3] It is the westernmost American city on mainland North America. The westernmost city in Alaska, however, is Adak, located on Adak Island, in the Aleutians West Census Area. Wales Airport serves Wales with flights on Bering Air and Era Alaska to Nome.

History[edit]

A burial mound from the Birnirk culture (A.D. 500 to 900) was discovered near Wales and is now a National Historic Landmark.

In 1827, a Russian Navy report listed the Inupiat villages of "Eidamoo" near the coast and "King-a-ghe" inland in the area.

In 1890, the American Missionary Association established a mission at the site of present-day Wales. In the 1890s, reindeer (domesticated caribou) were brought to the area and in 1894 a reindeer station was established. Wales became an important whaling center due to its location along whale migratory routes, and it was the region's largest and most prosperous village, with more than 500 residents. Wales is named after the country in Western Europe.

The influenza epidemic from 1918 to 1919 decimated the population and economy of Wales.

In 2002 a wind-diesel system became operational.

On November 9, 2011, the city experienced the 2011 Bering Sea superstorm. Wind gusts of 89 miles per hour (143 km/h) were recorded in Wales.

Geography[edit]

Wales is located at 65°36′44″N 168°5′21″W / 65.61222°N 168.08917°W / 65.61222; -168.08917 (65.612116, -168.089285).[5]

Wales is located on the westernmost point of the American mainland, Cape Prince of Wales, on the western tip of the Seward Peninsula. It is 111 miles (179 km) northwest of Nome.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.8 square miles (7.3 km2), all of it land.

Demographics[edit]

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 152 people, 50 households, and 28 families residing in the city. The population density was 53.9 people per square mile (20.8/km²). There were 59 housing units at an average density of 20.9 per square mile (8.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 8.55% White, 0.66% Black or African American, 83.55% (127 people) Native American, 0.66% from other races, and 6.58% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.66% of the population.

There were 50 households out of which 38.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.0% were married couples living together, 8.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 44.0% were non-families. 40.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.04 and the average family size was 4.43.

In the city the population was spread out with 38.2% under the age of 18, 11.8% from 18 to 24, 25.7% from 25 to 44, 21.1% from 45 to 64, and 3.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 26 years. For every 100 females there were 111.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 141.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $33,333, and the median income for a family was $39,583. Males had a median income of $29,375 versus $22,188 for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,877. About 17.2% of families and 18.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.2% of those under the age of 18 and 50.0% of those 65 or over.

Climate[edit]

Wales is located within the polar climate zone (Köppen ET).

Climate data for Wales, Alaska
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 53
(12)
47
(8)
42
(6)
48
(9)
56
(13)
67
(19)
72
(22)
73
(23)
65
(18)
54
(12)
45
(7)
44
(7)
73
(23)
Average high °F (°C) 7.2
(−13.8)
4.3
(−15.4)
5.4
(−14.8)
16.0
(−8.9)
32.2
(0.1)
43.4
(6.3)
51.9
(11.1)
51.0
(10.6)
44.1
(6.7)
32.6
(0.3)
22.0
(−5.6)
9.9
(−12.3)
26.7
(−2.9)
Daily mean °F (°C) 3.0
(−16.1)
−2.5
(−19.2)
−1.4
(−18.6)
9.7
(−12.4)
27.5
(−2.5)
38.5
(3.6)
47.4
(8.6)
47.0
(8.3)
40.5
(4.7)
28.6
(−1.9)
16.5
(−8.6)
3.8
(−15.7)
21.55
(−5.82)
Average low °F (°C) −6.7
(−21.5)
−9.3
(−22.9)
−8.2
(−22.3)
3.4
(−15.9)
22.8
(−5.1)
33.5
(0.8)
42.9
(6.1)
43.0
(6.1)
36.8
(2.7)
24.6
(−4.1)
10.9
(−11.7)
−2.3
(−19.1)
16.0
(−8.9)
Record low °F (°C) −44
(−42)
−44
(−42)
−42
(−41)
−32
(−36)
−8
(−22)
20
(−7)
15
(−9)
30
(−1)
−11
(−24)
−11
(−24)
−28
(−33)
−35
(−37)
−44
(−42)
Precipitation inches (mm) .41
(10.4)
.45
(11.4)
.48
(12.2)
.27
(6.9)
.54
(13.7)
.73
(18.5)
1.47
(37.3)
2.46
(62.5)
1.99
(50.5)
1.41
(35.8)
.68
(17.3)
.52
(13.2)
11.41
(289.8)
Source: NOAA (normals, 1971−2000),[7] Weather.com (extremes) [8]

Education[edit]

Wales is served by the Bering Strait School District. Wales School serves grades Pre-K through 12.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Directory of Borough and City Officials 1974". Alaska Local Government (Juneau: Alaska Department of Community and Regional Affairs) XIII (2): 85. January 1974. 
  2. ^ "Community: Wales". Community Database Online. Juneau: Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, Division of Community and Regional Affairs. 2013. Retrieved June 4, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Wales city, Alaska". Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 23, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Alaska Taxable 2011: Municipal Taxation - Rates and Policies" (PDF). Division of Community and Regional Affairs, Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. January 2012. 
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  6. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  7. ^ "Climatology of the United States No. 20 1971−2000: Wales, AK" (txt). National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved 2012-02-18. 
  8. ^ "Daily Climate Summary for Wales, AK − Temperature and Precipitation". Weather.com. Retrieved 2012-02-18. 

External links[edit]