A look at the Kenai Peninsula's past ...

Posted: Sunday, February 03, 2002

Alaska Road Commission Crew, Kenai

Beginning today, the Peninsula Clarion will publish a weekly photograph supplied from an archiving program being put together by Soldotna resident Marge Mullen and Kenai Peninsula College Professor Alan Boraas.

The photos will highlight slices of life on the peninsula and will be featured in the Sunday Peninsula Life section. The photo above was taken at mid-century. Kenai was a "coveralls" town, and this 1953 photo of some of the Alaska Road Commission crew exemplifies that fact.

From left to right are Russel Bagley (grandfather of current Borough Mayor Dale Bagley), Dale Doner, Dale Roreson, Paul Tachick, Bill Stock, Jake Dubendorf and Marion Hergatt.

After World War II, the central Kenai Peninsula grew in population, and the road system expanded. The territorial Alaska Road Commission maintained the roads out of a shop in Kenai. The shop buildings in the background of this photograph were mostly World War II surplus buildings brought from Seward.

These men graded and plowed the roads and maintained the equipment, which consisted of surplus World War II graders, trucks and snowplows. They also maintained the single school bus of the territorial school. Few of the roads were built to modern standards, and the ARC crews constantly battled washouts, floods, frost heaves and ruts.

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