Our church began with the dedication of the Red Dragon Club House on July 14, 1908 in festivities attended by Bishop Peter Trimble Rowe, Red Dragon founder the Rev. E. P. Newton, railroad workers, and Chief Joseph and 24 Natives of Eyak Village. The Red Dragon was a reading room, complete with a fireplace, piano, and pool table open 7 days a week, an alternative to the bars and brothels that were commonplace during the building of the Copper River Railroad. On Sundays, an altar and chairs were set up for church services.
The church’s first priest was the Rev. Eustace P. Ziegler who led services in Cordova and along the railroad line—in addition to church and activities at the Red Dragon that included dances and boxing matches. Rev. Ziegler designed the St. George’s Church building which was consecrated on Easter Sunday, April 20, 1919. Rev. Ziegler left Cordova in 1924 to devote full-time to his artwork. paintings and sketches, many which are featured in the Anchorage Art Museum.
Each time we go into the church, we are thankful for all those who have helped keep St. George’s going throughout the years. More about our history is available at www.reddragoncordova.org
The Red Dragon now serves as our parish hall—and the “town’s living room.” It is available for meetings, birthday parties, overnight stays, dinners, and other church and community events.