Delta Junction is located at the convergence of the Richardson and Alaska Highways, approximately 95 miles southeast of Fairbanks. The city developed along the east bank of the Delta River, south of its junction with the Tanana River. It offers spectacular views of the Alaska Mountain Range. The visitor's center is located in the "Triangle," where the Alaska Highway meets the Richardson Highway. Tanana Athabaskans Indians occupied this site throughout most of the 19th and early 20th centuries.
In 1899, the army sent parties to investigate the region to find the best route for a trail north from Valdez through the Copper River Valley. By 1901, the army had completed the Trans-Alaska Military Road, which extended from Valdez to Eagle. In 1942, construction of the Alaska Highway began, and Fort Greely military base was completed 5 miles to the south. The 2011 population, according to Alaska Department of Labor estimates was 991.
The Catholic Church began to establish itself in the early 1940's when benefactor Ray Stirewalt donated a building and some land on Buffalo Lane. The building was remodeled into a simple church. In 1952 a new church was built. It served until the present Our Lady of Sorrows was built in 1989. Catholic Church history in Delta Junction is linked to that of other communities along the Richardson and Alcan Highways such as Delta, Tok, and Northway, which either border the Alaska Range or cross these formidable mountains at Isabelle Pass.
When the Alcan Highway connecting Alaska to the contiguous States was completed in the early 1940's, Ms. Marie Bronson, a State of Alaska Public Health Nurse and devout Catholic who worked in the region, observed that the district was sorely in need of a Catholic priest. She appealed to then Bishop Francis Gleeson who responded favorably. He sent a diocesan priest to begin the task of building "Church" from Delta to Tok and southeast to Northway, and points as far as Glennallen located south of the Alaska Range.