Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in Heritage Sites

Welcome to Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in Heritage Sites, an online resource dedicated to exploring our history and culture.

Tr’ochëk: Klondike City

Sternwheeler at Klondike City, August 1898. Shallow waters by the Yukon’s riverbank prevented Klondike City from becoming a successful shipping centre.

Sternwheeler at Klondike City, August 1898. Shallow waters by the Yukon’s riverbank prevented Klondike City from becoming a successful shipping centre.

Yukon Archives #6291, Bill Roozeboom Coll.
Klondike City looking north in 1898. Notice the tents, cabins and caches built on housing platforms on Klondike Hill. The large long building was Tom O’Brien’s store.

Klondike City looking north in 1898. Notice the tents, cabins and caches built on housing platforms on Klondike Hill. The large long building was Tom O’Brien’s store.

Yukon Archives #2159, Vancouver Public Library Coll.
View of  Klondike Island, 1900. Notice the toll bridge crossing Klondike Island, the Klondike Mill building under construction and houses perched on the lower slopes of Klondike Hill.

View of Klondike Island, 1900. Notice the toll bridge crossing Klondike Island, the Klondike Mill building under construction and houses perched on the lower slopes of Klondike Hill.

Yukon Archives, Margretta Gaundroue Coll., 82/219, #56.

Two years after the Hän move from Tr’ochëk, the site had changed beyond recognition. Gone were the fish racks, salmon traps and cooking hearths. Now there was a dense clutter of tents, cabins, caches, a sawmill, brewery, saloon, store, and the one-room cribs of prostitutes. Although, local businessmen called the new community Klondike City, most people knew it best as the infamous red light district of Lousetown.

The new settlement became the terminus for the Klondike Mines Railway with the tracks running right up the main street and a railway bridge spanning the Klondike River.