Skagway Centennial Statue – Skagway, Alaska - Atlas Obscura

Skagway Centennial Statue

A monument commemorating the role of Alaska's native Tlingit guides in the Klondike Gold Rush. 


This large and interesting statue in the middle of a park near the White Pass train depot was erected in 1997 to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of discovering gold in the region. It shows a scene that was typical of the start of a prospector’s journey through the small city of Skagway up to White Pass: a Tlingit packer showing the way.

The inscription on the monument gives you a little history about how Skagway got its name; it was originally called “Skagua,” which is a Tlingit word for “windy place.” The plaque also provides some information about the first people in the area, the Tlingits from the Chilkoot and Chilkat villages, and how they worked with the stampeders that flocked to the area to make some of the first discoveries of gold during the Klondike Gold Rush.

The statue is one of the first Skagway sites you see on the short walk into town from the hillside cruise docks. The tracks of the historic White Pass Yukon Railroad are directly behind the statue, so if you time it right, you can get a great picture with the train in the background. There are also benches in the park where you can relax and enjoy the nearby flowers and scenery, as well as a nature trail very close by. 

Know Before You Go

The statue is only about a 10-minute walk from the cruise ship terminal. There are several other historical markers in the immediate area that are also worth a visit.

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March 15, 2019

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