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ISSUE 1

ALASKA

MUNGER VALLEY

PIONEERS

FIRST HOME IN MUNGER VALLEY 1947

FAMILY FUR FARMING STARTED IN MI

JOE MUNGER’S FIRST FUR HARVEST 1947

REFLECTION OF SLOPE MOUNTAIN

Alaska Pioneers Joe & Jim Munger buy Silver Salmon 100 mile trapline for $300.00 in 1947

Fur Farming Mungers establish 5 line cabins to provide top quality furs to Hudson Bay Furriers 1947-1975

Salmon Fishing Joe marries Sally and they run six salmon fishing nets at Silver Salmon Creek 1952-1990

Sally Wins Big king competition


JOE MUNGER COMMERCIAL SALMON FISHING SNUG HARBOR 1948


ISSUE 1

ALASKA  

MUNGER VALLEY

PIONEERS

CONTENTS Letter from the Editor

1

Alaska Pioneers

2

Fur Farming

3-4

Salmon Fishing

5-6

Mountains & Valleys

7-8

Gary Ervin Managing Editor www.gde91.com

Nicole Flothe Publisher

Letter from the Editor I am the nephew of Joe & Sally Munger. My first trip from Michigan to Alaska was for eight months in 1965. I fell in love with Alaska and Joe and Sally wanted me to stay on. However, I went back to Michigan and completed my college at MSU. Grandma Munger, Joe’s mother, was a favorite of mine. We went bluegill fishing even when she was over 90 years old. I would go to Munger Valley twice a year from Michigan to help Joe and Sally go to fish camp in the spring and return to Munger Valley in the fall. The passion for fishing and hunting grew, and in 1984 my family and I moved to Alaska. This Alaska Pioneer story is dedicated to Grace and George Munger, Jim Munger, and Joe and Sally Munger. Visit www.gde91.com for news on upcoming issues.

Cheryl Flothe Editor

Hunter Ervin Advisor

Suzanne Ervin Art Director

*All photos are under copyright protection. Any unauthorized use will be subject to penalty.

- Gary Ervin

1


Alaska Pioneers

ISSUE 1

Alaska My Alaska 1st Home in Munger Valley


Joe & Sally’s log cabin built by hand

Jim Munger and his fur trade

Joe & Sally’s vegetable garden 2


Fur Farming

ISSUE 1

Many years of fur harvests sold to Hudson Bay Furriers 1947-1995

Joe Munger’s 1st harvest 1947

Line cabin Johnson River

Jim Munger stands with fox, mink, & blanket beaver furs

3


Fur Farming

ISSUE 1

Joe and   Sally lived out their lives fur farming. They spent 30 days at a time in a 10x10 line cabin, catching and preparing the fur for the market. The money made from fur farming paid all their expenses for the year allowing them to commercial fish and travel.

Joe Munger fur farming

Sally with winter catch 1952

Fox, beaver, martin, mink, and wolverine were some of the annual catch. They traveled most of the time by snowshoe through the swamps and trails of Munger Valley. 4


Salmon Fishing

ISSUE 1

Commercial Fishing was from May till September and was full of excitement, hard work, with large and small catches. Sally held the big king catch record and she was very proud of Joe’s handcrafted boat building. He cut the knees and the ribs of the boat from tree roots.

5


ISSUE 1

Set netting was used to catch thousands of pounds of fish off the beach at Silver Salmon Creek run by Joe Munger, and later by Jerry Bernas.

Sport fishing allowed Joe, Sally, & Suzanne to hand can salmon on a wood stove.

Commercial fish were turned into Nova Lox and also as fresh frozen seafood. 6


Mountains & Valleys

ISSUE 1

The many faces of Munger Valley—5 am marble sky sunrise, fields of fireweed, and wildlife.

7


Mountains & Valleys 1.

ISSUE 1

2.

4.

3.

5.

6.

7.

1. Joe hiked up Silver Salmon Creek. 2. Sally loved her fur parka. 3. Joe cuts timber in the valley. 4. Handcrafted Scrimshaw knife made in Munger Valley. 5. Sally has lunch with the winter scarecrow waiting for Joe to come home from the trapline. 6. Jerry Bernas flies the valley sightseeing. 7. Joe picks salmon berries along the streams and swamps. ***Visit www.gde91.com for news on upcoming issues. 8


ISSUE 1

Joe Munger educated Gary Ervin, his nephew, on Alaskan Brown Bear dangers. The guidance Joe passed on to Gary was to ALWAYS understand that the Alaskan Brown Bear is a killer and protector. They kill to eat and sows will protect their cubs in a fast and targeted manner. The two signals you must react to quickly are: if you surprise a sow and cubs and the sow begins to snap her back jaw bone and or swing her head back and forth, she is telling you she is about to take action. This sow brown bear picture was taken by Gary up Johnson River. Gary startled the sow and she saw him as a danger to her cubs. The cubs were in the grass right beside her and she began snapping her back jaw and swinging her head back and forth. Gary was about 60 yards from the 800 lb brown bear. When he saw her actions he dropped his camera, gun, and pack and climbed 15 feet up a tree that happened to be 5 feet away from him. Everything happened so quickly and the sow was at the base of the tree in seconds. After the sow was satisfied her cubs were out of danger, she took them into the berry patch to enjoy blueberries. Alaska Munger Valley Pioneers will be published quarterly. Each issue will share many stories of the pioneers, more pictures, letters, and Jim Munger cartoons of life in Alaska on an Alaskan trapline, fish camp, and more. Go to www.gde91.com and subscribe for future issues!

BROWN BEAR SOW 1965

Profile for Nicole Flothe

Alaska Pioneers Magazine Issue 1  

Alaska Pioneers Magazine shares stories from the early history from 1947 forward. I have hundreds of letters from Joe & Sally to Grandma Mu...

Alaska Pioneers Magazine Issue 1  

Alaska Pioneers Magazine shares stories from the early history from 1947 forward. I have hundreds of letters from Joe & Sally to Grandma Mu...

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