Kotzebue is a city in Northwest Arctic Borough in the U.S. state of Alaska. According to 2005 Census Bureau estimates, the population of the city was 3,237.
Kotzebue gets its name from the Kotzebue Sound, which was named after Otto von Kotzebue, who explored the sound while searching for the Northwest Passage in the service of Russia in 1818.
There is archaeological evidence that Inupiat people have lived at Kotzebue since at least the 15th century. Because of its location, Kotzebue was a trading and gathering center for the entire area. The Noatak, Selawik and Kobuk Rivers drain into the Kotzebue Sound near Kotzebue to form a center for transportation to points inland. In addition to people from interior villages, inhabitants of the Russian Far East came to trade at Kotzebue. Furs, seal-
Kotzebue, was known by natives as Kikiktagruk or Qikiqtagruk, which means "almost an island" in Inupiaq, the language of the Inupiat, which is a reference to the spit. The name of the town was later changed to Kotzebue after Baltic-
Reindeer herding was introduced in the area in 1897. Although Alaska had caribou, the wild form of reindeer, the domesticated reindeer were brought to Alaska from Asia.
A United States post office was established in 1899.
Kotzebue is currently the largest city in the Northwest Arctic Borough.
John Baker and Ed Iten, both top 10 finishers in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, are residents of Kotzebue.
Kotzebue was a filming location for the 1991 film Salmonberries.
Kotzebue is home to NANA Regional Corporation and the large, non-
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