2nd Class City
in the Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area
- Area Type
- Current Population
- Population Comment
- 2013 DCCED Certified Estimate
- Pronunciation/Other Names
- (kuh sann')
- Census Designated Place (CDP)
- Borough/Census Area FIPS Code
- Place FIPS
Election, Recording, and Judicial Districts
- Senate District
- House District
- Judicial District
- Recording District
Facilities and Amenities
- Municipal Facilities & Utilities
- Piped Water, Refuse Collection, Volunteer Fire & Rescue, Fuel Sales, Post Office (Federal Contract)
Geography and Climate
- Kasaan is situated on the east side of Prince of Wales Island on Kasaan Bay, 30 miles northwest of Ketchikan.
- Prince of Wales Island is dominated by a cool, moist, maritime climate. Average summer temperatures range from 49 to 63 °F; winter temperatures average from 32 to 42 °F. Average annual precipitation is 120 inches, with 40 inches of snow.
- Community Map Available
- Map URL
- Sq Mi Land
- Sq Mi Water
History and Culture
- Originally Tlingit territory, Kasaan gets its name from the Tlingit word meaning "pretty town." Haidas migrated north to Prince of Wales Island from Haida Gwaii (the Queen Charlotte Islands) in the early 1700s and established the village now known as "Old Kasaan" 7 miles south on Skowl Arm. Between 1892 and 1900, the Copper Queen mine, camp, sawmill, post office, and general store were built by a group of businessmen on Kasaan Bay, and the Haida people relocated to this new village. The copper mine went bankrupt after four years, but in 1902 the first salmon cannery was constructed. The cannery burned in 1907, 1910, and again in 1911 but was rebuilt each time. The cannery operated sporadically until 1953. During this time, Kasaan had a school, three stores, a Presbyterian church, and other businesses. Chief Son-i-hat built the Whale House during the 1880s, a traditional clan house which became the focus of the new Kasaan Totem Park. Many of the totems left from the old village site were moved to the park in 1938. Kavilco, Inc., the local village corporation, purchased the old cannery buildings and property in 1974. Organized Village of Kasaan, a federally recognized tribe, was formed in Kasaan in 1938. The City of Kasaan was incorporated in 1976. Remnants of the historical Karta River village and petroglyphs lie north of the city, and the Old Tom Creek village and fort lie south of the city.
- Kasaan was traditionally a Haida village, but the population has become mixed with Haidas, Tlingits, Eskimos, and non-Natives. Subsistence activities are a major contributor to villagers' diets.
- Federally Recognized Tribe
- Name of Federally Recognized Tribe
- Organized Village of Kasaan
- Incorporation Type
- 2nd Class City
- Public Education
- Not permitted to provide this service.
- Planning, Platting and Land Use Regulation
- Not required to exercise the powers in any circumstance, but may be permitted in all cases in the manner described for first class cities.
- Property Tax Powers
- May tax up to 20 mills, except where a higher levy is required to avoid default. Voter approval required.
- Sales Tax Powers
- No limit on the rate of levy of sales taxes; however, voter approval is required.
- Other Powers Not Prohibited
- May exercise other powers not prohibited by law.
- City Council or Assembly Composition and Apportionment
- 7 members elected at-large, except the council may provide for election other than at-large.
- Election and Term of Mayor
- Elected from the city council for a 1-year term, unless a longer term is provided by ordinance. Mayor selected by council (or by voters upon adoption of ordinance).
- Vote by Mayor
- Votes on all matters.
- Veto Power of the Mayor
- Does not have veto power.
- Power of Eminent Domain
- Permitted, but requires voter approval.
- Ability to Attain Home-Rule Status
- May not adopt home-rule charter without first reclassifying to a first-class city.
- Kasaan can be accessed by automobile, float plane, and boat. A state-owned seaplane base accommodates charter flights and air freight services from Ketchikan. There is a dock at the old cannery site and a state owned small boat harbor, but no public launching facility. Kasaan is connected via a gravel road to the Prince of Wales Island road system.
- State Ferry
- Cargo Barge
- Road Connection