Jim grew up in St. George in the early 40’s during the nuclear testing era which took place north of Las Vegas, Nevada. It was not uncommon at that time to witness in the early morning light the orange glow from these experimental blasts. Jim continued his education thru high school and college, obtaining his Civil Engineering degree wherein he became employed by the Nevada Highway Department, however……
Jim had always had a great desire to go to Alaska, so he purchased GMC truck with a small camper shell, loaded up his wife MaryAnn of four years, their young daughter and Mary Ann’s sister and departed for an adventure in Alaska. While there they fell in love with Alaska and Jim took employment with the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs where he was in charge of new road construction through several native villages throughout Alaska.
Jim’s employment took him to over 100 remote native villages throughout Alaska. This era was just after statehood and most of the villagers were as they had been for centuries. His job was to determine feasibility and costs of improving roads from these remote villages to each of their airstrips that provided the only link to the outside world. Jim would go out with the “Village Elders” to hunt and harvest caribou, process and transport the much needed meat back to each village. There they would store the meat in their sod houses or permafrost dug outs for the next year’s essential food supply. “I had hunted mule deer and chased wild mustangs on horseback every season with my uncle”, Jim said, “but this Alaska deal was the real thing and I WAS HOOKED!!!!”
To increase his knowledge of the area, Jim took employment with the Alaska Federal Land Use Planning Commission and moved to Anchorage. This enabled Jim to travel throughout Alaska as a representative of the Alaska Department of Fish & Game and U.S. Fish and Wildlife. This opportunity to fly to every corner of this Last Frontier was a once in a life time experience and increased his knowledge and commitment for the opportunities of Wildlife Adventures in the new state of Alaska.
After obtaining his private pilot’s license as well as Alaska Registered Guide License, and US Coast Captains License, he was now able to pursue his passion for wildlife adventures by guiding clients throughout Alaska for moose, caribou, black tail deer, sheep and black and brown bear. In 1973 he terminated all employment with the state of Alaska and designed his first yacht; a 50 footer which he named “Chaik” (which means Eagle in the Tlingit language). Over the next 40 years Jim constructed and toured with five more yachts from 40 to 80 feet in length.
Jim’s first hunting safari was to Sudan, Africa in 1979. MaryAnn, Michelle his oldest daughter and Buddy their son accompanied him for this two month long adventure. The villagers had seen no white people and wore no clothing at all. Their safari camp consisted of a portable tent, what an ADVENTURE!!! So these travels continued around the world for the next 35 years collecting the 300 species of big game that you now see in the Rosenbruch World Wildlife Museum.
In 2005 Jim received the Weatherby Award; the most difficult and coveted hunting award, awarded annually to the person with the most species legally hunted and their contributions to wildlife preservation.
Jim just completed “With Divine Assistance” a hard cover 400 page book with full color pictures and illustrations which covers the last 70 years of their lives and includes all that you will see and experience inside the museum.
Your attendance and interest is very much appreciated and helps to make improvements, bring in new and interesting displays, and rotate animals as needed.
Jim and MaryAnn Rosenbruch