CHEI Programs

Mapping Project

Video Project

Substance Abuse Prevention

Board / Staff

Photo Gallery

Athabascan Values


Contact us! 

sends mail to CHEI





Old Minto village is located in Interior Alaska, on the banks of the Tanana River, a tributary of the Yukon River, about 50 miles south of Fairbanks. The village has no road access and is therefore only accessible by air or river. The nearest town is Nenana, Alaska. The Athabascan spelling of Minto is 'Mentee', and means 'people amongst the lakes'. 

Mentee was settled in 1912 by a band of Interior Athabascan Indians led by Chief Charlie, of the Minto Flats area. In 1971, the residents moved to a new location 25 miles north, and accessible by road from Fairbanks, which is now called New Minto, or Minto.

Despite relocation from the old site, the people of Minto have maintained a strong spiritual attachment to Old Minto. Elders still go there to camp, visit graves of their ancestors and recapture memories. The cabins, church, community hall, and store buildings still exist today, and many elders recall the days when these buildings were in use. For these people and their descendants, Old Minto remains "home" and represents a significant part of their spirituality. 


The people of Minto have harbored a vision of bringing Old Minto back to life and giving it new purpose. With supporters, Robert Charlie, Executive Director of CHEI, is making this vision a reality. Plans for restoration of a number of historic buildings in Old Minto are already underway. CHEI is working with the people of Minto, Fairbanks and other organizations such as Americorps, National Civilian Conservation Corps, and Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce to gather funds, materials and workforce needed to accomplish restoration tasks. Any contributions are greatly appreciated, if you would like to help contact CHEI


As restoration continues, it is not just the people of Minto that can enjoy the Old Minto village. Cross-cultural groups from Fairbanks to Great Britain have visited Old Minto and participated in one of the "spiritual camps" coordinated by CHEI. These camps provide the opportunity to meet and visit with Elders, learn useful and interesting Athabascan skills, and connect with nature while camping at this remote site. Old Minto is also used for a variety of seminars, workshops, survival training, and arts/crafts skills training.




PO Box 73030 Fairbanks, AK 99707 | (907) 451-0923 |



Old Minto

Comments or Suggestions? Please contact CHEI

to top of page