Park Service buys Wrangell-St. Elias inholding

Posted: Monday, April 08, 2002

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The National Park Service has acquired the Chititu Mine, a 907-acre private parcel in the heart of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, the agency announced.

The Park Service paid J.E.A. Chititu Creek Corp. of Minnesota $430,000 for the property. The National Park Trust, a nonprofit group, assisted with the negotiations and sale.

''This was a must purchase for the park, and we were pleased to have been part of the process,'' said Paul Pritchard, president of the Washington, D.C.-based land trust.

Park superintendent Gary Candelaria credited the trust with helping to close the sale.

''The trust got this moving when negotiations reached an impasse and helped both the National Park Service and the owner stay focused,'' he said.

The mine, about 15 miles southeast of McCarthy, produced continuously from 1902 through the early 1950s.

It has several historic structures and is eligible for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places.

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