Point Lay Population: 189 (2010 US Census Population)
There is a place on the Chukchi Sea that is the last remaining village of a great people – the Kuukpaagruk. It was here in the 19th Century that the Kuukpaagruk people made their last stand, even as Yankee whaling ships decimated whale populations and disease and starvation reduced the village to silence.
It was here in this place of a deeply indented shoreline where we hunted beluga whales that our way of life diminished and was almost completely lost. By the 1960s there were only two people left living in Point Lay. Then children and young people returned and with them came hope for the future. The population steadily increased. Now over 189 descendants of the Kuukpaagruk live here.
Here in Point Lay, the old way of life continues. After many years of absence, our relationship with the whale was complete again. In 2009 we celebrated our first successful whale hunt since 1937.
When you collaborate with the Arctic Slope Community Foundation, you are investing in Point Lay. You are giving strength to everyone who lives here.