Students seek to preserve flume tales

Posted: Thursday, December 27, 2001

JUNEAU (AP) -- An elementary school class plans to assemble an oral history of the Gold Creek Flume, a structure that's been a Juneau landmark for more than a century.

Built first to carry water to power a waterwheel and electric generator, the structure is now a popular walking path.

David Haas, a teacher at Harborview Elementary School, gave his third-grade class the unique assignment as part of a grant from the Juneau-Douglas City Museum.

The students are seeking local residents who have ''any interesting story or anecdote'' about the waterway's history.

Haas said the class is looking for first-hand accounts about the flume's construction, tales of animal encounters along the path or avalanches and landslides.

''The idea is to get some of those people in the classroom,'' Haas said. ''I'll have the kids write it up, and we'll make a booklet and publish it.''

Alaska Electric Light & Power Co. built the flume in the 1890s. It is now a walking path that is used often by Harborview teachers and students as a place to observe and study nature, Haas said.

Earlier this year the utility helped the class publish a full-color brochure describing the trail which will be distributed next summer.

Haas said he hopes local residents will be willing to share memories with his class for use in the planned booklet.

''I'm sure there are people with so many wonderful stories,'' Haas said. ''It would be nice to share those with future generations.''

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Haas can be contacted at Harborview at 463-1875 or via e-mail at haasdjsd.k12.ak.us



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