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Granby-Alaska Company Records

 Collection
Identifier: SpC MS 0208

Scope and Content Note

This small collection contains copies of documents concerning the founding and operation of the Granby-Alaska Company. The documents appear to have been assembled for some purpose, perhaps to prepare for the numerous lawsuits against the company. Included are the agreement and declaration of trust establishing the company in 1906 and documents from John C. Green outlining the requirements and costs for work on the mine in the first year. Most of the collection consists of copies of letters to George Burnham, 1906-1908, from the other trustees of the company, from attorneys, from John Green and from Green's son, Harold, who appears to have been responsible for day-to-day operations in Alaska. The collection also contains a photocopy of a report done by M.A. Floyd for Harold Burnham of Wellesley, Massachusetts, a nephew of George Burnham. Floyd outlines the history of the company and its many problems and analyzes the possibility of realizing some profit from Burnham's holdings. A letter to Harold Burnham from the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey provides information about the status of the mine site in 1933.

Dates

  • 1906-1933
  • Majority of material found within 1906-1909

Creator

Restrictions on Access

Kept at Fogler Library's offsite storage facility. One week's notice required for retrieval.

Use Restrictions

Information on literary rights available in the repository.

Historical Note

The collection contains records of the Granby-Alaska Company, incorporated in 1906 to operate a gold mine in Omilak on the Seward Peninsula in Alaska. The mine was started by John C. Green who was associated with the Russian-American Mining and Exploration Company in Washington State. In 1906 Green conveyed the mining property to George Burnham, Jr. of Portland, Maine, and S.H.C. Miner of Granby, Quebec Province; Alfred D. Chandler of Brookline, Massachusetts, Charles C. Young of Ellsworth, Maine, and Webster R. Dorr of Boston also became trustees of the new company. Burnham and Miner supplied most of the money to develop and carry out mining operations, agreeing to loan the company $65,000 to start work in Alaska. Burnham was a pioneer in the canned goods packing business and head of the Burnham and Morrill Company in Portland. He was also an investor in New York City real estate and one of the richest citizens of Maine. Miner was one of the first businessmen in Granby and operated a tannery and a rubber business there. The mining company had problems from the start with failure to obtain working capital and dissension among the trustees and Green, who was working as general manager. Alfred Chandler traveled to Alaska in the summer of 1907 to see to the company's interests and reported favorably on its progress. However, by 1908 the company's creditors began to take legal action and after a failed attempt to mortgage the company's property, all of the trustees except John Green resigned. After this, litigation and efforts to salvage as much as possible were the predominating efforts of all involved. Georg Burnham died in January, 1909, and the administrators of his estate continued efforts to settle claims and pay expenses. Legal proceedings continued for some years and by 1923 it appears that Green had succeeded in raising some money and work had resumed at the mine. However, a letter in the collection written in 1933 indicates that no production had been reported from the property for many years.

Extent

0.2 linear feet (1 box)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

This small collection contains copies of documents concerning the founding and operation of the Granby-Alaska Company. The documents appear to have been assembled for some purpose, perhaps to prepare for the numerous lawsuits against the company.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of John P. Burnham in 1998 and 2001.

Creator

Title
Guide to the Granby-Alaska Company Records
Status
Box And Folder List Available
Date
2012
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Code for uncoded script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Raymond H. Fogler Library Special Collections Repository

Contact:
5729 Raymond H. Fogler Library
University of Maine
Orono ME 04469-5729 United States
207-581-1686