Statement of Significance (as of designation - April 5, 2005):
Amalik Bay was a gateway for the widespread exchange of ideas and technological innovations, including ground-slate tools and Norton-style pottery, hallmarks in the development of coastal Eskimo economies across the far northern reaches of the continent. The lowest cultural levels found at sites in the district are particularly significant in answering questions about early coastal vs. interior migrations as the site is dated precisely to the cusp between the Paleoarctic (mostly interior) and later traditions. The Amalik Bay sites, located in a position between the Bristol Bay side of the Alaska Peninsula to the northwest (linguistically Yupik Eskimo) and Kodiak Island (Alutiiq Eskimo) to the southeast, are significant for their potential to shed light on provocative questions concerning Alutiiq ethnogenesis. The Mink Island site, one of 28 contributing properties to the Amalik Bay district, plays a pivotal role in understanding the breadth of early (ca. 6,000 years BC) coastal technologies from the Aleutians eastward along the entire southern coast of Alaska.