Creator
Nick Nichols
Time Period
1935
Entries
17

Nichols Collection

Palmer Museum of History and Art
Palmer Museum of History and Art
Open Finding Aid
About the​​​ 
Nichols Collection

"Nick" Nichols was employed at the Trading Post from early in the Colony establishment. He was active in the social scene with the numerous other single Corporation employees, teachers, nurses and others. Many of his 267 images in this collection document people, social activities, and various other aspects of the earliest days of the Colony project.

Image is an aerial view of Colony tents forming Camp 8 located within a large expanse of heavy forest with the Matanuska River visible in background.  Portions of the airplane’s wing and struts are obvious in foreground.
Image is of Nick Nichols posing in a “Classy Car”.  Contemporary photos in our collection support the assumption that this photo was made on a group outing to the Goose Bay area, and the car may have belonged to Grace Bagoy of Anchorage.
:  Image shows a stake-bed truck with five people in back with barrels and tubs covered with white canvas on their way to gather salmon for the winter.  People are unidentified.  Forest forms the backdrop
Image shows a group of small children sitting on a rail in front of a rail car. Trees and mountains are visible in background.
Image shows two trucks used to deliver commissary goods to Matanuska Colonists throughout valley.  Tents are visible behind the trucks.
Image shows Colony manager Don Irwin and author Rex Beach displaying examples of farm plants presumably produced in the local area.  The men stand in front of a frame building exhibiting signs indicating it was Irwin’s office.
Image shows a grass field in foreground, the barn, silos and associated buildings of the Experiment Farm in middle ground, forest behind and part of Pioneer Peak in background.
Image shows a winter scene of workers uncrating incubators for installation in the new poultry hatchery building in the community center of the Matanuska Colony Project in Palmer.  The Colony warehouse and water tower are visible in background.  Overhead electric lines are evident, dense forest is apparent at right and a truck is partially visible at left.
Image is a view down a dirt street showing tents and two frame structures on the right in foreground and tents at left in middle ground.  Large tents in center are medical facilities.  The colony ambulance and “nurses car” is visible in front of one of the hospital tents.  The American flag is visible on a pole over the complex.
Image is a view of four tents with an American flag and a Red Cross flag flying on a pole overhead, identified as the Colony hospital tent complex.
Image is dominated by a log Colony house with exterior construction essentially complete.  A colony tent is partially visible at left, lumber arranged at right with chopping block and sawbuck in foreground.  Heavy forest behind.
Image shows railroad tracks in foreground with a steam engine and the Matanuska depot in middle ground.  Two automobiles are evident.  A man is visible walking into the building and another man is evident in the cab of the engine.  A water tower is visible in the background with trees beyond.
Image is a high oblique view of Palmer in the summer of 1935 when it was often called “Tent City” because of all the tents in place housing the Colonists and others associated with the Matanuska Colony project.  The numbers in evidence on the photo identify: #3-Trading Post; #4-Isolation Hospital; #5-General & Maternity Hospital; #6-Manager Don Irwin’s Residence.  Homesteader John Bugge’s fields are in the lower right and other homestead clearings within the heavy forest are apparent.
Image shows five men associated with the early colony activity.  They’re identified as: (l to r): Clair (Nick) Nichols & Louis Odsather (commissary); John Osseward (ARRC Accountant); Ron Pasco (Railroad Agent); and Skip Cowden (Commissary).  A dog also poses with the men.  A small wooden building and several tents are visible behind the group and mountains are visible in background.
Image shows six people gathered on a four-door car parked in front of a building identified by a sign on the front as “Palmer Post Office, General Store”.  Another sign advertises "Gasoline For Sale".  Five women are apparent and identified as Palmer school teachers: (l to r) Lorrinda Ward, Unidentified, Zelda Pilkerton, Peggy Pimperton, Unidentified, and Mildred Ferguson.  An unidentified sixth person can be seen peeking through the car from the other side.
Image shows a straight gravel road through heavy forest in foreground leading past tents and buildings in far middle ground with Adam Werner’s homestead buildings evident at the end.  Chugach Mountains are in background.
Image shows three people sitting in foreground, identified as: Willis T. Geisman (official Colony photographer) at left; Lorinda Ward (school teacher) center; and Freddie.  Other people are evident in middle ground standing in front of a tent.  Heavy forest is in background.
Image is an aerial view of Colony tents forming Camp 8 located within a large expanse of heavy forest with the Matanuska River visible in background.  Portions of the airplane’s wing and struts are obvious in foreground.
Title

Camp 8 Air View

Creator

Nichols

Subject

Colonist's Camp 8

Description

Image is an aerial view of Colony tents forming Camp 8 located within a large expanse of heavy forest with the Matanuska River visible in background. Portions of the airplane’s wing and struts are obvious in foreground.

Location

Matanuska Valley south of Palmer, Alaska

Image is of Nick Nichols posing in a “Classy Car”.  Contemporary photos in our collection support the assumption that this photo was made on a group outing to the Goose Bay area, and the car may have belonged to Grace Bagoy of Anchorage.
Title

Classy Car

Creator

Unknown

Subject

Nick Nichols Poses in a Classy Car

Description

Image is of Nick Nichols posing in a “Classy Car”. Contemporary photos in our collection support the assumption that this photo was made on a group outing to the Goose Bay area, and the car may have belonged to Grace Bagoy of Anchorage.

Location

Matanuska Valley, Alaska

:  Image shows a stake-bed truck with five people in back with barrels and tubs covered with white canvas on their way to gather salmon for the winter.  People are unidentified.  Forest forms the backdrop
Title

Colonists Going Salmon Fishing

Creator

Unknown

Subject

People in a truck going to catch salmon for subsistence

Description

: Image shows a stake-bed truck with five people in back with barrels and tubs covered with white canvas on their way to gather salmon for the winter. People are unidentified. Forest forms the backdrop

Location

Matanuska Valley, Alaska

Image shows a group of small children sitting on a rail in front of a rail car. Trees and mountains are visible in background.
Title

Colony Kids 2

Creator

Hewitt's Photo Shop, Anchorage

Subject

People

Description

Image shows a group of small children sitting on a rail in front of a rail car. Trees and mountains are visible in background.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image shows two trucks used to deliver commissary goods to Matanuska Colonists throughout valley.  Tents are visible behind the trucks.
Title

Commissary Delivery Trucks

Creator

Nichols

Subject

ARRC Commissary Delivery Trucks

Description

Image shows two trucks used to deliver commissary goods to Matanuska Colonists throughout valley. Tents are visible behind the trucks.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image shows Colony manager Don Irwin and author Rex Beach displaying examples of farm plants presumably produced in the local area.  The men stand in front of a frame building exhibiting signs indicating it was Irwin’s office.
Title

Don Irwin and Rex Beach

Creator

Nichols

Subject

Don Irwin & Rex Beach display examples of crops being grown in the area

Description

Image shows Colony manager Don Irwin and author Rex Beach displaying examples of farm plants presumably produced in the local area. The men stand in front of a frame building exhibiting signs indicating it was Irwin’s office.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image shows a grass field in foreground, the barn, silos and associated buildings of the Experiment Farm in middle ground, forest behind and part of Pioneer Peak in background.
Title

Experiment Farm 30

Creator

Hewitts

Subject

Matanuska Experiment Farm

Description

Image shows a grass field in foreground, the barn, silos and associated buildings of the Experiment Farm in middle ground, forest behind and part of Pioneer Peak in background.

Location

Matanuska, Alaska

Image shows a winter scene of workers uncrating incubators for installation in the new poultry hatchery building in the community center of the Matanuska Colony Project in Palmer.  The Colony warehouse and water tower are visible in background.  Overhead electric lines are evident, dense forest is apparent at right and a truck is partially visible at left.
Title

Hatchery Incubators

Creator

Nichols

Subject

Workers unload incubators for installation in the new hatchery building

Description

Image shows a winter scene of workers uncrating incubators for installation in the new poultry hatchery building in the community center of the Matanuska Colony Project in Palmer. The Colony warehouse and water tower are visible in background. Overhead electric lines are evident, dense forest is apparent at right and a truck is partially visible at left.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image is a view down a dirt street showing tents and two frame structures on the right in foreground and tents at left in middle ground.  Large tents in center are medical facilities.  The colony ambulance and “nurses car” is visible in front of one of the hospital tents.  The American flag is visible on a pole over the complex.
Title

Hospital Tents 1

Creator

Nick Nichols

Subject

Tent City

Description

Image is a view down a dirt street showing tents and two frame structures on the right in foreground and tents at left in middle ground. Large tents in center are medical facilities. The colony ambulance and “nurses car” is visible in front of one of the hospital tents. The American flag is visible on a pole over the complex.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image is a view of four tents with an American flag and a Red Cross flag flying on a pole overhead, identified as the Colony hospital tent complex.
Title

Hospital Tents 2

Creator

Hewitts Photo Shop

Subject

Colony Hospital Tents

Description

Image is a view of four tents with an American flag and a Red Cross flag flying on a pole overhead, identified as the Colony hospital tent complex.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image is dominated by a log Colony house with exterior construction essentially complete.  A colony tent is partially visible at left, lumber arranged at right with chopping block and sawbuck in foreground.  Heavy forest behind.
Title

House 8

Creator

Hewitts Photo Shop

Subject

Log Colony House on tract 73

Description

Image is dominated by a log Colony house with exterior construction essentially complete. A colony tent is partially visible at left, lumber arranged at right with chopping block and sawbuck in foreground. Heavy forest behind.

Location

Matanuska Valley near Palmer, Alaska

Image shows railroad tracks in foreground with a steam engine and the Matanuska depot in middle ground.  Two automobiles are evident.  A man is visible walking into the building and another man is evident in the cab of the engine.  A water tower is visible in the background with trees beyond.
Title

Matanuska Railroad Station

Creator

Hewitts Photo Shop

Subject

Train engine and station house at Matanuska, Alaska

Description

Image shows railroad tracks in foreground with a steam engine and the Matanuska depot in middle ground. Two automobiles are evident. A man is visible walking into the building and another man is evident in the cab of the engine. A water tower is visible in the background with trees beyond.

Location

Matanuska, Alaska

Image is a high oblique view of Palmer in the summer of 1935 when it was often called “Tent City” because of all the tents in place housing the Colonists and others associated with the Matanuska Colony project.  The numbers in evidence on the photo identify: #3-Trading Post; #4-Isolation Hospital; #5-General & Maternity Hospital; #6-Manager Don Irwin’s Residence.  Homesteader John Bugge’s fields are in the lower right and other homestead clearings within the heavy forest are apparent.
Title

Palmer Air View 15

Creator

Hewitts Photo Shop

Subject

Aerial view of Palmer in the summer of 1935 with many of the colonist’s tents still present

Description

Image is a high oblique view of Palmer in the summer of 1935 when it was often called “Tent City” because of all the tents in place housing the Colonists and others associated with the Matanuska Colony project. The numbers in evidence on the photo identify: #3-Trading Post; #4-Isolation Hospital; #5-General & Maternity Hospital; #6-Manager Don Irwin’s Residence. Homesteader John Bugge’s fields are in the lower right and other homestead clearings within the heavy forest are apparent.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image shows five men associated with the early colony activity.  They’re identified as: (l to r): Clair (Nick) Nichols & Louis Odsather (commissary); John Osseward (ARRC Accountant); Ron Pasco (Railroad Agent); and Skip Cowden (Commissary).  A dog also poses with the men.  A small wooden building and several tents are visible behind the group and mountains are visible in background.
Title

People 10

Creator

Unknown

Subject

Men of the Colony

Description

Image shows five men associated with the early colony activity. They’re identified as: (l to r): Clair (Nick) Nichols & Louis Odsather (commissary); John Osseward (ARRC Accountant); Ron Pasco (Railroad Agent); and Skip Cowden (Commissary). A dog also poses with the men. A small wooden building and several tents are visible behind the group and mountains are visible in background.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image shows six people gathered on a four-door car parked in front of a building identified by a sign on the front as “Palmer Post Office, General Store”.  Another sign advertises "Gasoline For Sale".  Five women are apparent and identified as Palmer school teachers: (l to r) Lorrinda Ward, Unidentified, Zelda Pilkerton, Peggy Pimperton, Unidentified, and Mildred Ferguson.  An unidentified sixth person can be seen peeking through the car from the other side.
Title

Sophisticated Ladies

Creator

Nick Nichols

Subject

Palmer teachers posing on a car

Description

Image shows six people gathered on a four-door car parked in front of a building identified by a sign on the front as “Palmer Post Office, General Store”. Another sign advertises "Gasoline For Sale". Five women are apparent and identified as Palmer school teachers: (l to r) Lorrinda Ward, Unidentified, Zelda Pilkerton, Peggy Pimperton, Unidentified, and Mildred Ferguson. An unidentified sixth person can be seen peeking through the car from the other side.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

Image shows a straight gravel road through heavy forest in foreground leading past tents and buildings in far middle ground with Adam Werner’s homestead buildings evident at the end.  Chugach Mountains are in background.
Title

Werner Road

Creator

Hewitts Photo Shop

Subject

Gravel road to the Werner Homestead

Description

Image shows a straight gravel road through heavy forest in foreground leading past tents and buildings in far middle ground with Adam Werner’s homestead buildings evident at the end. Chugach Mountains are in background.

Location

Matanuska Valley north of Palmer, Alaska

Image shows three people sitting in foreground, identified as: Willis T. Geisman (official Colony photographer) at left; Lorinda Ward (school teacher) center; and Freddie.  Other people are evident in middle ground standing in front of a tent.  Heavy forest is in background.
Title

“Willie, Laura & Freddie”

Creator

Nichols

Subject

Two men and a woman in tent city

Description

Image shows three people sitting in foreground, identified as: Willis T. Geisman (official Colony photographer) at left; Lorinda Ward (school teacher) center; and Freddie. Other people are evident in middle ground standing in front of a tent. Heavy forest is in background.

Location

Palmer, Alaska

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