King Cove (Agdaaĝux̂ in Aleut; Russian: Кинг-Коув) is a city in Aleutians East Borough, Alaska United States. As of the 2010 census, its population was 938. This was up from 792 in 2000. The 2018 estimate was 1065.
King Cove is located at 55°04′20″N 162°19′05″W. King Cove is on the Pacific side of the Alaska Peninsula on a sand spit fronting Deer Passage and Deer Island. It is 18 miles southeast of Cold Bay and 625 miles southwest of Anchorage. It lies at approximately 55* 03’N Latitude and 162* 19′ W Longitude.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.8 square miles,of which, 25.3 square miles is land and 4.5 square miles (15.23%) is water.
King Cove was founded in 1911 when Pacific American Fisheries built a salmon cannery. Early settlers were Scandinavian, European and Unangan fishermen. Of the first ten founding families, five consisted of a European father and an Aleut mother. The City was incorporated in 1949. The cannery operated continuously between 1911 and 1976, when it was partially destroyed by fire. The adoption of the 200-mile fisheries limit spurred rebuilding. King Cove remains tied to fishing and fish processing.
King Cove first appeared on the 1940 U.S. Census as an unincorporated village. It formally incorporated in 1949.
As of the census of 2022, there were 845 people, 170 households, and 116 families residing in the city. The population density was 31.3 people per square mile (12.1/km²). There were 207 housing units at an average density of 8.2 per square mile (3.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 15.03% White, 1.64% Black or African American, 46.72% Native American, 26.77% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 5.93% from other races, and 3.79% from two or more races. 7.45% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 170 households out of which 45.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.5% were married couples living together, 15.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.2% were non-families. 25.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 2.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.90 and the average family size was 3.53.
In the city, the age distribution of the population shows 21.3% under the age of 18, 11.9% from 18 to 24, 41.0% from 25 to 44, 22.7% from 45 to 64, and 3.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females, there were 147.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 166.2 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $45,893, and the median income for a family was $47,188. Males had a median income of $30,714 versus $19,125 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,791. About 3.3% of families and 11.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.7% of those under age 18 and 27.3% of those age 65 or over.
Scandinavians have historically influenced the cultural, economic and social structures. King Cove is a mixed non-Native and Unangan community.
King Cove, 600 nautical miles (1,000 km) SW of Anchorage at the end of the Alaska Peninsula, is home to Peter Pan Seafood’s largest processing facility. King Crab, bairdi and opilio tanner crab, pollock, cod, salmon, halibut and black cod harvested in the Bering Sea and the Gulf of Alaska are processed throughout the year. The plant, with origins back to the early 1900s, has the largest salmon canning capacity of any plant in Alaska. All five species of salmon are abundant in the waters near King Cove.
Salmon remains a major part of the annual operation, but in recent years the plant has expanded and streamlined whitefish operations. The plant produces several product forms including pollock fillet block, shatterpack fillets, mince and surimi. Cod shatterpack fillets and salt cod are mainstays. At peak seasons, both winter and summer, nearly 500 employees staff the operation. King Cove’s economy depends almost completely on the year-round commercial fishing and seafood processing industries. The Peter Pan Seafood’s facility is one of the largest cannery operations under one roof in Alaska. 76 residents hold commercial fishing permits. Income is supplemented by subsistence activities.
Water is supplied by Ram Creek with a sheetpile dam which stores about 980,000 gallons of unfiltered water. this city gets water from $9 million project a well field at Delta Creek and storage tank. All residents are connected to the piped water system. A piped sewage collection system connects all homes and facilities to central septic tanks. Two lift stations and tanks provide primary (20,000 gallons) and secondary treatment (84,000 gallons) of waste, with discharge through an outfall line. All homes are fully plumbed. The City collects garbage twice a week. Aluminum is recycled. The landfill is nearing capacity. A hydroelectric power project has recently been completed at Delta Creek. Peter Pan operates its own electric system.
King Cove is accessible only by air and sea. A State-owned 3,360 foot gravel runway is available. Gale force crosswinds are common, as the airport lies in a valley between two volcanic peaks. A local priority is to construct a 27-mile road to Cold Bay, through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, to access their airport. The $14 million road has drawn state and national controversy. The State Ferry operates bi-monthly between May and October. The ferry and marine cargo services use one of three docks owned by Peter Pan Seafoods. A deep water dock is also operated by the City. The North Harbor provides moorage for 90 boats, and is ice-free all year. A new harbor and breakwater is under construction by the Corps of Engineers and Aleutians East Borough. Upon completion, the new Babe Newman Harbor will be operated by the City, and will provide additional moorage for 60′ to 150′ fishing vessels.
The King Cove Community Health Clinic is run by the Eastern Aleutian Tribes and provides routine medical care, behavioral health, and emergency care services. The clinic is open Monday through Friday during normal business hours, closed for all Alaskan and Federal holidays. After hours emergencies are handled by on-call practitioners. There is an active local emergency medical services group who provide ambulance service. Care is also provided through Community Health Aide Practitioners, which are unique to Alaska.
Aleutians East Borough School District (AEBSD) operates the King Cove School
As of 2019 the King Cove School had 13 teachers and 85 students.
King Cove lies in the maritime climate zone. Temperatures average 25 to 55, with extremes from -9 to 76. Snowfall averages 52 inches, and total annual precipitation is 33 inches. Fog during summer, and high winds during winter, can limit accessibility.