Felix Pedro
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Felix Pedro

Felix Pedro Felice Pedroni, discoverer of gold in Fairbanks, was born in Italy.

He had been prospecting in the hills around the Tanana Valley in the interior of Alaska, during the Klondike Gold Rush in Yukon Territory, Canada.

1898 found Felix trying to reach Circle City when he became lost and was soon nearly out of food. It was then that he stumbled across the richest gold-bearing creek he had ever seen.

He and his partner marked the find and continued on to Circle City. He needed to earn money for supplies. He searched for years, but never found his way back to Lost Creek.

Three years later, he and Tom Gilmore were in the hills, still searching for gold in other creeks. On August 26, 1901, once more out of provisions and exhausted, they began the 165 mile walk back to Circle City. From the top of a hill, Pedro and his partner saw the smoke from the LaVelle Young, and headed toward the steamboat, hoping the men on board had extra food to sell.

It was meeting the miners and learning that there were other prospectors in the area that persuaded Captain Barnette to set up a trading post where he was until he could move his goods to Tanacross, his original destination. He never did move to Tanacross and the new settlement became Fairbanks, in honor of Charles Fairbanks, a Republican senator from Indiana.

Felix Pedro stuck gold on July 22, 1902, in a creek 12 miles north of E. T. Barnette's Trading Post. See our Fairbanks History page to learn more about what happened then.

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