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Pioneer Harry Badger Dies at 96 in Sitka (October 14, 1965)

Harry Badger, a pioneer Alaskan who was born just two years after the United States purchased Alaska form Russia, died Monday in the Pioneers Home in Sitka.


He was born Nov. 19, 1869 in Wyoming, Mont. (called Sunrise then) near the spot where Gen. George A. Custer and his 276 soldiers were killed in June, 1876. In 1960 the pioneer Alaskan recalled the Indian massacre when the women and children in the area moved to St. Paul, Minn. until the uprising cooled off.


Badger came to Alaska in 1903 but he had spent three years from 1900 in the Dawson gold rush area.


He went over the White Pass, pulling his sled behind him. When he and a friend he was traveling with arrived in Dawson they had $2.50 between them. They bought a good meal, a cigar and started off their northern life with only 50 cents left.


In 1903 Badger came to the camp on the Chena River which today is Fairbanks. He became one of the city's first recorders, parceling out lots for $2.50 each. In 1916 Badger began homesteading on what is now Badger Road. He continued to live on his homestead until recent years when he entered the Pioneers Home in Sitka.


The pioneer is well known for his vegetable gardening and his pioneering in the growth of strawberries in the Tanana Valley.


Funeral services for the former Fairbanksan are being held in Sitka this week. Burial will be in the Alaska Pioneers Home Cemetery.


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