Wednesday, July 06, 2011

What Anchorage Sports Facility is Named After a Former City Clerk?

I was in the Alaskana room at the UAA-APU Consortium library and came across some old City of Anchorage Annual Reports which give some perspective on today.

This one was 1959 and had a picture of downtown on the cover.

The City Council was pretty male and everyone, at least for these pictures, wore a coat and tie.  The Loussac Library they mention was downtown. 

Now, here's 1964.  It was published in 1965 so it's the year of the earthquake.

I thought this picture and caption were a bit quaint.

What caught my attention in this picture of Goose Lake ('popular in July') was all the snow on the mountains.  There's barely a white spot up there now - July 5.  Now, it's possible the picture wasn't taken in July, but I seem to recall that 30 years ago, we had a fair amount of snow on the mountains into August. 

[UPDATE July 6:  I took a picture at Goose Lake today for a comparison.  I didn't check at the time and the focus is awful, but it does show the contrast to the snow in the 1964 Year Book.   I'll try for a better shot when there aren't any clouds.]

And here's a little bit about a man most of us know about only because his name is on a building.

Click to enlarge
He did everything from elections to dog licenses - hired high school kids to go door to door for the dog licenses - business licenses, and polling Mt. View residents about liquor licenses in the area.  [UPDATE:  for non-Anchorage folks here's a link to the Ben Boeke facility.
The Consortium library - the basically cool building with the ugly neon green tower on top on the UAA campus - allows people with Municipal library cards to check things out.  I'll do some more on this section.


  1. I remember as a child some very cold, very deep snow winters in the early 60s. With more snow in the Chugach then as well as warmer winters now it could help explain why this picture shows more snow in the mountains in the summer.

    Winter in Anchorage by the mid 00s was definitely different. And so it goes.

  2. I think it's quaint and shows "equality" when buildings were named after "regular" people who were in the trenches and served their communities with all their being. - There is an elementary school in Homer named after the janitor. He did more than clean/maintenance, he bonded with the children and staff in many ways. Cheerful and caring. - Paul Banks Elementary School - . Mr.Boeke must have been a special person in those days??

  3. This is quite interesting-- first, I thought that Mr. Boeke had been a pilot for some reason. I used to figure skate four mornings a week at the ice arena named in his honor and I must have confused him with someone else.

    Second-- I moved to Anchorage in 1980 and I remember patches of snow even on Flattop, which was framed by my kitchen window. I also remember splotches of snow on the mountains around the city. As time wore on and the summers got hotter, they gradually disappeared, much to my pleasure in my early 20's!


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