Alaska was first visited by Europeans in the late first half of the 18th century (1741), following a Russian expedition led by Vitus Behring, a Danish navigator in the service of the Tsars who, along with some members of his crew, perished on the return trip to Europe. It gave its name to the sea that separates Alaska from Siberia in the North Pacific.
In the last quarter of this century (1784), Grigory Shelekhov colonized the island of Kodiak and Gerasim Pribilof located the “Seal” islands two years later. Earlier, in 1793 and 1794, the Englishman Georges Vancouver would have already explored part of the region. In 1799 the Russo-American Company achieved a monopoly on the fur trade.
For several decades, Russia’s control over Alaska has remained unchanged, despite the onslaught of other powers such as Spain, England, France and the United States of America, a country to which Moscow came to think of selling this territory when the decline in the fur trade and the threat of invasion by the British in the 1950s of the 19th century. However, this deal, conducted by Secretary of State William H. Seward (until 1867), on the American side, did not materialize due to the outbreak of the American Civil War.
Following the Secession (or American Civil War), the American military presence in Alaska took place as early as 1867 when they acquired the territory from the Russians for $ 7,200,000 (one of the best deals in world history) and prolonged until 1877. However, effective control over this territory was only possible in 1879 with the arrival of warships. Then, in 1884, the United States Congress established Alaska as a district governed by the Americans, ceasing to be military territory. In 1906 Alaska gained the right to have a delegate in Congress, and in 1912 it gained the status of territory. However, it was not until 1958 that it was named the 49th American state, an event that brought great prosperity to the territory.
This region offered, in the 80s of the 19th century, a profitable salmon fishing, an activity replaced by the gold rush in the 90s, which attracted a considerable number of people to cities like Anchorage and Fairbanks.
Alaska’s economic development was seriously compromised by the failure of the attempt to govern itself and, in the second and third decade of our century, there was a decrease in population, with the effects of the Great Depression being felt seriously. However, with the New Deal of the 1930s, propitiatory measures were implemented for its progress and encouraging its colonization.
With the Second World War, Alaska was recognized as a vital strategic point, being besieged by the Japanese, who occupied the islands of Attu and Kiska. In an attempt to alleviate threats to Alaska’s territorial waters, the US government sponsored, in 1942, the construction of a motorway to connect with British Columbia, Canada, along the Pacific coast to Juneau, capital state, and from there to other cities.
Later, in the Cold War period, in an atmosphere of tension with the Eastern Bloc led by the Soviet Union, military constructions were increased. In this context DEW (Distant Early Warning) Radar stations were launched. The fish industry, in the past the main source of income for this economy, declined around the 1940s, its place being occupied by forest products in the 1950s and, mainly, by oil, discovered in 1957. Oil extraction increased in the 1960s with the discovery of new and abundant deposits in the north of the territory. If, on the one hand, this industry brought economic prosperity and enabled the development of Alaska, on the other hand it carried environmental problems.
- COUNTRYAAH.COM: Provides a list of all holidays in the state of Alaska when both banks and schools are closed, including national wide and world holidays, such as New Year, Christmas, and Thanksgiving Day, as well as regional holidays of Alaska.
- AbbreviationFinder.org: Do you know how many acronyms that contain the word Alaska? Check this site to see all abbreviations and initials that include Alaska.
Universities in Alaska
University of Alaska in Anchorage
The University of Alaska was founded in Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city, in 1954 as Anchorage Community College. Today, the university is the largest of the Alaska universities with approximately 17,000 students. The university has the following faculties:
- Art science
- Natural sciences
- Nursing science
Alaska Pacific University in Anchorage
Alaska Pacific University was founded in Anchorage in 1954 as the Alaska Methodist University. The university is a rather small university with only around 1,000 students. The university participates in the Eco League and focuses on environmental sciences.
University of Alaska at Fairbanks
The University of Alaska at Fairbanks was founded in 1917, making it the oldest of all universities in Alaska. The university has a special reputation in the fields of arctic biology, arctic engineering, geology, geophysics and studies of indigenous people. With currently around 10,000 students, it is the second largest university in Alaska. The students are divided into the following faculties:
- Agricultural sciences
- Engineering and mining sciences
- Science and mathematics
University of Alaska Southeast
The University of Alaska Southeast was founded in 1972 and is therefore a rather young university. The main campus of the university is in Juneau. The university also maintains other branches in Sitka and Ketchikan. Around 3,000 students are currently studying at the following faculties:
- Natural sciences
- Economics and management
Public Schools in Alaska by County
- Alaska Aleutians East Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Aleutians West Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Anchorage Municipality Public Schools
- Alaska Bethel Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Bristol Bay Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Denali Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Dillingham Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Fairbanks North Star Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Haines Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Hoonah-angoon Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Juneau City And Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Kenai Peninsula Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Ketchikan Gateway Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Kodiak Island Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Lake And Peninsula Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Matanuska-susitna Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Nome Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska North Slope Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Northwest Arctic Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Petersburg Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Prince Of Wales-hyder Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Sitka City And Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Skagway Municipality Public Schools
- Alaska Southeast Fairbanks Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Valdez-cordova Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Wade Hampton Census Area Public Schools
- Alaska Wrangell City And Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Yakutat City And Borough Public Schools
- Alaska Yukon-koyukuk Census Area Public Schools