The Strawberry King

Charles N. Anway was born May 1, 1857 in Ionia County Michigan and died December 11, 1949 in Juneau. Mostly he lived in Haines and loved to garden.

“Strawberries were the first crop that Anway grew. He got his start from Jack Dalton’s garden at Porcupine (up valley from Haines). Dalton told him that he got the berry from a man named Dixon about twenty years before. This strawberry is without a rival in size or quality and it does well almost everywhere in the valley, as the climate and soil seem well suited for the plant. During the picking season, Anway would hire as many as 20 women and girls. Pickers were paid 5 cents per box, and they could often earn five dollars a day picking as many as 150 crates. The crates sold for $4.50 each so he was grossing about $720 per day. He continued this for about 25 years, shipping berries to Skagway, then north on the train, and also shipping to Juneau when ships were available. Haines became known as the Strawberry Capital of Alaska. In the 1909 Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition in Seattle, Anway won a certificate of honor for his “strawberries in glass.” His obituaries called him Alaska’s the “Strawberry King of Alaska”. The community of Haines held an annual “Strawberry Festival” in his honor for many years.”

Rootsweb – Bob Henderson, Haines (Notes by R. T. Edwards).

Joseph Chisel

Joe Chisel was a member of the Arctic Brotherhood in 1905 and ran a gambling house and later a General Drug Store in Haines. Seen above is the store he ran with his brother in the 1920’s in Haines. Joe was born on this day, June 6, 1868 in Bavaria Germany
and came to the U.S. with his mother, Frances, in 1869 when he was nine months old. He came to Alaska during the 1897 Gold Rush and changed the spelling of his name to Chisel from Schisel.
His brother Albert was born in Wisconsin (see earlier blog on his untimely death in Haines over a dog.) Joseph died in 1946 in Portland.

family website;

Capt. Francis H. Poindexter

Frank Poindexter was the Justice of the Peace in Chilkat between 1887-1891.
He was born in 1842 in Pennsylvania. He moved with his wife Anna and his son Theodore to Alameda, California in the 1870’s and was a bookkeeper there. Seeeking his fortune, he came to Alaska in 1887 with Theodore and worked as the Superintendent of the Chilkat Cannery (seen above where women are laying out nets). This cannery was reportedly blown down in 1891.
Poindexter was also Supt. of the Pyramind Harbor Packing company. The Pyramid Harbor cannery was on the western side of the Chilkat Inlet and was built in 1883 by the Northwest Trading Company. This cannery burned in 1889, but was rebuilt at once and a pack was made that year. This cannery packed 1000 cases of fish per day and in 1896 employed over 100 people in the cannery (many of whom were Chinese) and over 200 fishermen both native and newcomers. Cannery fishermen used large gill nets and some purse seines. A fleet of steamers, transport ships, lighters, riverboats, and skiffs were also used in cannery operations. The average redfish (sockeye) catch from 1894 to 1898 was 300,000 per year.

In 1890 Poindexter was appointed as Postmaster of Chilkat, Alaska.
Poindexter’s position as Justice of the Peace was cited several times in the Alaska Boundary Commission report in 1903 to help determine the occupation of the area by the U.S. during those years.

Francis Poindexter died in October 1898 in Los Angeles, California.

Juneau AK Free Press Jan 19 1887 to Mar 21 1891; California Death Index; 1880 census; Sheldon Museum website.

Steve Sheldon

Steve Sheldon was the U.S. Marshal for Haines and Skagway between 1925 and 1930. The museum in Haines is named for him. Steve and his wife Elisabeth were lifelong collectors and his extensive collection was donated to the city of Haines. Steve was born on this day, May 27, 1885 in Columbus Ohio and moved to Alaska in 1911 to work with Michael Heney on the Copper River Railroad. He met Elisabeth, married and stayed in the Haines and Skagway area. He died in August 1960 in Seattle.

WW1 registration for Haines; Sheldon Museum site

Jack Dalton

Jack Dalton had a very long and very interesting life. He was described by a woman in Haines as “a dapper, well-dressed, ladies man”. He is best known for opening up the “Dalton Trail” out of Haines.
He ran a hotel in Haines in 1896 and later arrested Jack Wade for murder, but also was himself jailed for shooting a shopkeeper McGinnis. He was later acquitted.
He was mentioned in the 1903 AK Boundary Tribunal by Don-a-wak, chief of the Chilkat Indians. In 1886, Jack signed on as roustabout and camp cook with the Schwatka-New York Times expedition to climb Mt. St. Elias. The party began their ascent at tidewater in Icy Bay on July 17, 1886. They traversed rugged terrain for twenty-five to thirty days, crossed fast coastal rivers, and reached an elevation of about 5,700-feet before Schwatka’s health failed, which terminated the first recorded attempt on the difficult mountain.
Dalton is featured in the Alaska Mining Hall of Fame Foundation website.
Born in 1856 in Michigan, he died in San Francisco on December 15, 1944.