Today marks the 43rd year that local folks of Skagway showed up in their grubby clothes and extra-toughs to pick up trash bags for project Clean Sweep. I don’t know how many people helped today, but there was certainly a great showing given the fact it was cool and blowing. Although earlier this spring the Chamber of Commerce seemed to be on the ropes, the good directors and members pulled off a great luncheon too.
Reed and I decided to clean Pullen Creek by the Peniel Mission. After the devastation of the “hazard tree removal” action last fall, most of the slash and brush had accumulated in the tiny creek. Plastic bags, pieces of cardboard, aluminum cans, one petrified coconut, and even an ancient car battery were also caught up. We noted some new bear poop and we talked to a few visitors from Whitehorse who came down for the long weekend.
We took naps after the luncheon, and I’m now eating the leftover cupcakes I made for the event. Wish you were here to share one!
Dr. Clayton Polley was the dentist for Skagway. He was born in 1907 in Massachusetts and moved to Skagway in 1934 just after getting married in Juneau. He practiced dentistry in Skagway from 1932 to 1947. Doc opened his dental office in what was formerly the Peniel Mission. He had his dental office upstairs and the family lived downstairs. In 1936, their first child, Ernest Edward, was born.
While in Skagway, the Doc served as the School Board President for six years and three years on the City Council. He was president of the Skagway Chamber of Commerce for two years and secretary-treasurer for three years. During World War II, Polley was captain of the Territorial Guard unit in Skagway. He was president of the Eagles Lodge, and organized and played in a dance band called the Glacier Bugs. Doc was a charter member and helped organize the Alaska Dental Society and served as its first elected president in 1951, and as its secretary-treasurer from 1956-1959.
He died on this day, April 9, 1996 in Juneau.
Seen above is the Peniel Mission building on 6th before restoration by the Park Service, it is now seasonal housing for the park rangers that do the walking tours in the summer.
Dahl book; Juneau P&R site