in the Aleutians West Census Area
- Area Type
- Place of Interest
- Current Population
- Population Comment
- 2013 Department of Labor Estimate
- Pronunciation/Other Names
- (nih koal' skee)
- Community's Judicial District
- Recording District
- Aleutian Islands
- Census Designated Place (CDP)
- Borough/Census Area FIPS Code
- Place FIPS
Geography and Climate
- Nikolski is located on Nikolski Bay, off the southwest end of Umnak Island, one of the Fox Islands. It lies 116 air miles west of Unalaska and 900 air miles from Anchorage.
- Nikolski lies in the maritime climate zone. Temperatures range from 11 to 65 °F. Annual snowfall averages 41 inches; total precipitation averages 21 inches. Strong winds are frequent during the winter, and fog during the summer, which limits accessibility.
- Community Map Available
- Map URL
- Sq Mi Land
- Sq Mi Water
History and Culture
- Nikolski is reputed by some to be the oldest continuously-occupied community in the world. Archaeological evidence from Ananiuliak Island, on the north side of Nikolski Bay, dates as far back as 8,500 years ago. The Chaluka archaeological site, in the village of Nikolski, indicates 4,000 years of virtually continuous occupation. People were living in Nikloski before the pyramids were built, the Mayan calendar was invented, or the Chinese language was written. In 1834, it was the site of sea otter hunting and was recorded by the Russians as "Recheshnoe," which means "river." In 1920, a boom in fox farming occurred here. The Unangan became affluent enough to purchase a relatively large boat, the "Umnak Native," which was wrecked in 1933. A sheep ranch was established in 1926 as part of the Aleutian Livestock Company. In June 1942, when the Japanese attacked Unalaska and seized Attu and Kiska, residents were evacuated to the Ketchikan area. Locals were allowed to return in 1944, but the exposure to the outside world brought about many changes in the traditional lifestyle and community attitudes. In the 1950s, the Air Force constructed a White Alice Communications System here, which provided some jobs. It was abandoned in late 1977.
- Residents are known as Unangan, and Aleut is spoken in three-quarters of all homes. Subsistence activities, sheep and cattle raising, and fishing-related employment sustain the community.
- Federally Recognized Tribe
- Name of Federally Recognized Tribe
- Native Village of Nikolski
Facilities, Utilities, and Health Care
- Nikolski has a unlighted gravel runway that provides passenger, mail, and cargo service. The airstrip used to be owned by the U.S. Air Force. It has no landing or port facilities for ships. Barges deliver cargo once or twice a year. Goods and passengers are lightered three miles to the beach.
- State Ferry
- Cargo Barge
- Road Connection
- Community's Senate District
- Community's House District