|Musk Ox Farm, 1930's Colony Barn|
Musk Oxen are survivors of the prehistoric ice age from 600,000 years ago. They lived in the arctic and subarctic regions throughout the world. The Musk Ox was very much a part of the Arctic people’s subsistence and legends. The Musk Ox provided many necessities for life such as bowls, ladles, cups, diaper liners, boot insulation, socks, moccasins, clothing, and bedding to name a few. By 1865 the Musk Oxen had disappeared from Alaska due to extreme harsh winters, making it difficult for them to find food, and due to the fact that whaling ships hired Eskimo hunters to find oxen for meat.
A similar problem was observed in Greenland and Canada. Governments began protecting the Musk Ox and in 1930 the U.S. Congress purchased 34 young Musk Oxen from Greenland and transported them to the Territory of Alaska. The oxen traveled by ship to New York, then by rail to Seattle and by boat to Seward then by train to Fairbanks – all the animals survived the four-month journey. After five years they were transported to Nunivak Island which had been established as a wildlife refuge. As the herd increased in size, Musk Oxen were transported to other places in Alaska.
|Baby Musk Ox|
|Youngster Musk Ox|
|The Beautiful Pastures and Barn - Musk Ox Farm, Palmer|