2nd Class City
in the Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area
- Area Type
- Current Population
- Population Comment
- 2013 DCCED Certified Estimate
- Pronunciation/Other Names
- 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, Piped Sewar, Electric, Refuse Collection, Landfill, Health Clinic, Police, Volunteer Fire/EMS/Rescue, Public Safety Facility, Animal Control, Harbor/Dock, Bay Chalet, Gravel Sales, Roads, Planning, Parks , Economic Development, Job Training
Geography and Climate
- Thorne Bay is 47 air miles northwest of Ketchikan on the east coast of Prince of Wales Island. On the island road system, it lies 60 miles from Hollis and 36 miles east of the Klawock Junction.
- Community Map Available
- Map URL
- Sq Mi Land
- Sq Mi Water
- Prince of Wales Island is dominated by a cool, moist, maritime climate. Summer temperatures range from 49 to 63 °F and winter temperatures from 32 to 42 °F. Average annual precipitation is 120 inches, with 40 inches of snow.
- Weather Station Name
- Thorne Bay
History and Culture
- The bay was named after Frank Manley Thorn, superintendent of the U.S. Coast & Geodetic Survey from 1885 through 1889. The name was misspelled when published. The first major settlement was built around the logging operation of Wes Davidson. Thorne Bay developed as a result of a long-term timber sales contract between the U.S. Forest Service and the Ketchikan Pulp Company. In 1960 a floating logging camp was built in Thorne Bay. In 1962 Ketchikan Pulp moved its main logging camp from Hollis to Thorne Bay. A shop, barge terminal, log sort yard, and camp were built to replace facilities at Hollis. Roads were then constructed to connect Thorne Bay with Hollis, Craig, and Klawock. During this time, it was considered the largest logging camp in North America. Thorne Bay evolved from a company-owned logging camp to an incorporated city in 1982, partly due to the land selection program provided for in the Alaska Statehood Act.
- Federally Recognized Tribe
- 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.
- Thorne Bay is accessed by float plane, the airport at Klawock, and the inter-island ferry at Hollis. The Thorne Bay Harbor provides slips for over 100 vessels. A seaplane base is state-owned. The Prince of Wales Island Road System connects the communities on Prince of Wales Island with one another.
- State Ferry
- Cargo Barge
- Road Connection