Koyukuk is located on the Yukon River near the mouth of the Koyukuk
River. It is 30 miles west of Galena.
After the Alaska Purchase, a United States military telegraph
line was constructed along the north side of the Yukon River and
Koyukuk became the site of a telegraph station. A trading post opened
around 1880, just before the gold rush of 1884-85. Steamboats on
the Yukon, which supplied gold prospectors ran before and after
1900 with 46 boats in operation on the river in the peak year of
1900. A measles epidemic and food shortages during 1900 reduced
the population of the area by one-third.