Lucky Number One – 90 Year Old Alaskan Native First To Be Counted in 2020 Census

Lucky Number One – 90 Year Old Alaskan Native First To Be Counted in 2020 Census

Posted By Paul G February 3rd, 2020 Last Updated on: February 3rd, 2020

Lizzie Chimiugak, Alaskan Native, who is 90 years old and still going strong, was the very first person in the United States to be counted for the census, which is taken every 10 years.

Alaska is always the first state to be counted and Chimiugak’s small town of Toksook Bay, located on the edge of the Bering Sea, was the bureau’s first stop this year.



According to a BBC article, “census workers always make an early start in Alaska in January, when the ground is frozen enough to traverse. If they were to wait a few more months, the ground would turn to a marsh and become almost impossible for them to cross.”

Chimiugak interviewed with the director of the census bureau with a family member serving as interpreter since she mainly speaks the Yup'ik language.

Once the count was finished, the party started…

A festive ceremony took place in Toksook Bay, which included “local Alaska Native dancers and traditional food, which include(d) seal, walrus, musk ox and moose” (Indian Country Today). Chimiugak remains a part of the Native dance group in the town and celebrated along with the crowd in her wheelchair.



Chimiugak has much love for her community and wants to help continue on with the story and culture of her tribe through communication, art, and dance.

In the census interview she stated:

‘We are Yup'ik people and that the world will see that we are very strong.'

Being the first means a lot to the Yup'ik people in Toksook Bay and Chimiugak takes the responsibility very seriously and with great pride.

Watch this video to see the town in action:

Feature Image from NPR.


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3 thoughts on “Lucky Number One – 90 Year Old Alaskan Native First To Be Counted in 2020 Census

  1. NOREEN SCHAAN says:

    It’s been a long time coming to have this census for my brothers and sisters and elders of the United States. This is so good for my people.

  2. JUST DISCOVRED YOUR WEBSITE – MY NAME IS ERNIE SALGADO AND A TRIBAL MENBER OF THE SOBOBA BAND OF LUISENO INDIANS – I HAVE POSTED A WEBSITE THAT GET OVER 2-MILLION HITS PER MONTH – CALIE.ORG WHICH STANDS FOR CALIFORNIA INDIAN EDUCATION, INC. A 501(C)(3) NON PROFIT – I ALSO PUBLISH A START UP AMERICAN INDIAN REPORTER NEWSPAPER WHICH IS CONSERITIVE MORE THAN LIBERAL BUT WE TRY TO BE BALENCED. WE WOULD LIKE TO HAVE YOUR APPROVAL TO LINK YOUR SITE TO CALIE.ORG AND TO REPRINT SOME OF YOUR ARTICLES IN OUR PUBLICATION. I AM RETIRED AND KEEPING BUSY THANK YOU e

    • You are welcome to link to our articles. However, I do NOT give permission for reprinting or republishing our content.

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