Founded in September, 1898 as "Strong & Johnstone Co." by Ketchikan pioneers Henry C. Strong and Frederick C. Johnstone, it was renamed Tongass Trading Company in 1900, and incorporated in October, 1901. At the turn of the century, Tongass Trading Company supplied the miners and mining camps throughout Southeast Alaska. In the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, Tongass Trading Company provided supplies, gear and storage to the commercial halibut fishing fleet, as well as household goods, clothes and groceries to local residents. In the mid and latter part of the 20th century, Tongass also supplied the booming logging camps of Southeast Alaska.
Through the years, Tongass Trading Company has kept pace with progress and the changing industries of Alaska. Today, Tongass Trading Company supplies commercial and sport fishing gear, hardware, furniture and clothing to industry and residents of Southeast Alaska. Additionally, Tongass Trading Company is a popular stop for cruise ship travelers looking for uniquely Alaskan curios, gifts and souvenirs.