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Mess Hall-Bunkhouse

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1934, Arnold Nordale; 1936–1937, moved to current site
  • Mess Hall-Bunkhouse

The mess hall-bunkhouse, now the restaurant and hotel, was constructed in 1934 at the Fairbanks Exploration Company's camp at Fox and moved to Ester in 1936–1937. Built according to plans by Arnold Nordale, a company employee, the two-story, hip-roofed building measures 37 feet by 72 feet. The wood-framed structure was sided with boards, tar paper, and corrugated metal; Celotex was placed on the interior. About one third of the first floor was devoted to kitchen facilities; the rest was the dining room and rooms for the cooks and foreman. The second floor had twelve rooms housing four men apiece. During a twenty-six-day strike in 1941, the men demanded indoor toilets (among other things), so a one-story, shed-roofed bathroom was added to one side. Today the building serves as a hotel and restaurant. The dining room has been enlarged by one bay by removing the cooks' and foreman's rooms. The bedrooms on the second floor each have two beds and a bath.

Writing Credits

Alison K. Hoagland


What's Nearby


Alison K. Hoagland, "Mess Hall-Bunkhouse", [Fairbanks, Alaska], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Alaska, Alison K. Hoagland. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 227-227.

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