Gambell (Yupik:Sivuqaq) is a village on St. Lawrence Island in Alaska, United States. At the 2000 census the population was 649.
Gambell is located on the northwest cape of St. Lawrence Island in the Bering Sea, 325(200 miles) southwest of Nome. It is 58(36 miles) from the Chukchi Peninsula in the Russian Far East.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 30.4miles (78.6²), of which, 10.9miles (28.2²) of it is land and 19.5miles (50.4²) of it (64.10%) is water.
Sivuqaq is the Yupik language name for St. Lawrence Island and for Gambell. It has also been called Chibuchack and Sevuokok.
St. Lawrence Island has been inhabited sporadically for the past 2,000 years by both Alaskan Yup'ik and Siberian Yupik people. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the island had a population of about 4,000.
Between 1878 and 1880 a famine decimated the island's population. Many who did not starve left. The remaining population of St. Lawrence Island was nearly all Siberian Yupik.
In 1887, the Reformed Episcopal Church of America decided to open a mission on St. Lawrence Island. That year a carpenter, lumber and tools were left at Sivuqaq by a ship. The carpenter worked with local Yupik to build a wood building, the first they had ever seen. When the building was finished, the carpenter left the keys to the door with a local chief and departed. Since the carpenter had not spoken Siberian Yupik, the residents did not know the purpose of the building.
The Reformed Episcopal Church had not been able to find missionaries willing to live on St. Lawrence Island, so the building built for the mission was left unoccupied. In 1890, the building was acquired by Sheldon Jackson. He spoke to the Reverend Vene and Nellie Gambell, of Wapello, Iowa, about moving to St. Lawrence Island. Gambell was hired as a schoolteacher and the Gambells came to the island in 1894. They had a daughter in 1897. Nellie Gambell became ill and the Gambells spent the winter of 1897-
After their death, Sivuqaq was renamed in the Gambells' honor.
Gambell and Savoonga received joint title to most of the land on St. Lawrence Island under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971.
On August 30, 1975, Wien Air Alaska Flight 99 crashed when trying to land in Gambell. 10 of the 32 passengers and crew on board were killed.
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