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Here are a few facts on Alaska for your reading pleasure

 

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Dallas Seavey is the 2014 Iditarod Champion

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Dallas Seavey

Dallas Seavey

Bib Number: 14
Hometown: Willow, Alaska
Website:

Biography

Dallas Seavey, 26, was born in Virginia and his family moved to Seward when he was five. He is a third generation musher who grew up helping his dad, Mitch, the 2004/2013 Iditarod champion, train his racing teams. He ran the Jr. Iditarod four times and in 2005, Dallas became the youngest musher in history to run the Iditarod. He also wrestled for Sky View High School and spent one year training at the U.S. Olympic Training Center. He is a High School State Champion, a Jr. National Champion, and was on the 2005 Jr. World team. In 2009, he and his family moved to Willow to “train our Iditarod team.” Dallas’ current occupation is training and racing sled dogs. In 2011, he won the Yukon Quest and in 2012, he became the youngest Iditarod champion in its history. He is one of four mushers ever to hold a championship in both the Yukon Quest and the Iditarod. Dallas and his wife, Jen, also an Iditarod veteran, are the parents of three year old Annie. Dallas is a member of USA Wrestling and the IOFC. He says he enjoys hunting, camping and fishing.

 

 

 

The State Flower, Bird, Tree and Sport

Forget-Me-Not: Alaska State Flower The state flower, adopted by the Territorial Legislature in 1917, is the wild Forget-Me-Not. The plant can be found in most areas across the  state. ptarmigan The state bird is the Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus alascensis Swarth). Adopted by the Territorial Legislature in 1955, the Willow Ptarmigan is a small arctic grouse that lives on open tundra in boggy areas.
Sitka Spruce: Alaska State Tree The state tree is the Sitka Spruce. This evergreen is abundant throughout the southeastern and central regions of Alaska, and was adopted in 1962 Dog Mushing: Alaska State Sport The state sport is dog mushing. Adopted by the Alaska Legislature in 1972, dogsledding once was the primary form of transportation in most of Alaska. Today dog sled racing is a popular winter sport.

The state song is "Alaska's Flag", written by Marie Drake, and set to music by Elinor Dusenbury:

Eight stars of gold on a field of blue,
Alaska's Flag, may it mean to you
The blue of the sea, the evening sky,
The mountain lakes and the flower's nearby,
The gold of the early sourdough dreams,
The precious gold of the hills and streams,
The brilliant stars in the northern sky,
The Bear, the Dipper, and shining high,
The great North star with its steady light.
O'er land and sea a beacon bright,
Alaska's Flag to Alaskans dear,
The simple flag of a last frontier.

 


The State Seal was created in 1910 by an "unnamed draftsman."
Alaska's State Seal

Alaska's State Seal In 1867, Russia sold Alaska to the United States, and for nearly fifty years the region was known as the District of Alaska. While Alaska was still a district, the first governor designated a seal of the district. This seal featured icebergs, northern lights, igloos and an Eskimo ice fishing. In 1910, this seal was replaced with a design more representative of the state's industrial and natural wealth. Today, this seal, created by an "unnamed draftsman," is the state seal of Alaska. The rays above the mountains represent the famous Alaskan northern lights. The smelter symbolizes mining, the train stands for Alaska's railroads, and ships denote transportation by sea. The trees pictured in the seal symbolize Alaska's wealth of timber, and the farmer, his horse, and the three shocks of wheat stand for Alaskan agriculture. The fish and the seals signify the importance of fishing and seal rookeries to Alaska's economy. The state seal of Alaska is a fine representation of the vast wealth of the forty-ninth state.

 

Conditions for Use of the State Seal from Alaska Statutes:

Chapter 44.09. STATE SEAL

Sec. 44.09.010. State seal.

The official seal of the State of Alaska is comprised of two concentric circles between which appear the words "The Seal of the State of Alaska" and within the inner circle is the design of the seal corresponding to the representation in this section.

Sec. 44.09.015. Use of seal without permission prohibited.

(a) A person may not use or make a die or impression of the state seal for any advertising or commercial purpose, unless written permission has first been obtained from the lieutenant governor.

(b) Violation of this section is a misdemeanor, and upon conviction is punishable by a fine of not more than $500, or by imprisonment for not more than six months, or by both.

Revisers Notes - Formerly AS 11.60.225. Renumbered in 1978.

The state motto is: North to the future.

The state gem is jade. Alaska has a large deposit of jade, including a big mountain filled with dark green jade on the Seward Peninsula.

The state mineral is gold. This mineral plays a large part in Alaska's history, from its discovery in Juneau in 1880 to the great gold rush at Nome in the first part of this century. Gold was named the state mineral in 1968.

The state insect is the four-spot skimmer dragonfly.

 

Alaska Flag The state flag was designed by 13-year-old Bennie Benson from Chignik, Alaska, in 1926. The blue field is for the sky and the Forget-Me-Not, the state flower. The North Star is for the future of the state of Alaska, the most northerly of the Union. The dipper is for the Great Bear - symbolizing strength.

 

 


Government

Every four years Alaskans elect a Governor and a Lieutenant Governor to four-year terms.

The Alaska State Legislature is made up of a Senate and a House of Representatives. Twenty senators are elected to four-year terms; forty representatives serve two-year terms.

Alaska's Constitution was adopted in 1956, and became effective in 1959, when the state was admitted to the union as the 49th state.

Alaska's U.S. Congressional Delegation is made up of two senators, Senator Mark Begich and Lisa Murkowski, who serve six-year terms of office, and one representative, Don Young, who serves a two-year term of office.

                                                                                                                                      




            Governor: Bill Walker                                                                                                                               Lieutenant Governor: Byon Mallott
                                                                                                         
 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
      Senator Elect: Dan Sullivan                                               Congressman Don Young
       DanielSSullivan.jpg                Senator Murkowski                        Congressman Don Young
 Senator Lisa Murkowski

 

 


Geography/Climate

Population

Alaska's population of 671,000 + makes it the third least populous state.

The state also boasts the lowest population density in the nation. There is 1.0 person per square mile (1991) in Alaska, compared to 71.2 people per square mile for the entire U.S.

Geography

Alaska's state capital is Juneau, a southeastern city of 30,000 people.

The state's largest city is Anchorage, a south-central city with a little over 225,000 people.

The second largest city is Fairbanks, located in the interior of the state, with just over 32,000 people.

Learn more about a particular Alaskan community.

 

Alaska is a geographical marvel:

Alaska superimposed over a map of the US At 586,400 square miles, Alaska is the U.S.'s largest state, over twice the size of Texas.
North to South, Alaska is 1,400 miles long.
East to West, it is 2,700 miles wide.
Relative size of Alaska compared to the continental United States
The state's coastline extends over 47,000 miles.
The 3.5 million acres of the Alaska State Park System constitutes the largest park system in the United States.
The Tongass National Forest is the largest national forest in the United States. It covers almost the whole of Southeast Alaska.
17 of the 20 highest peaks in the U.S. are located in Alaska.
Called Denali by the natives and later named Mt. McKinley, located in Alaska's interior, is the highest point in North America, at 20,320 feet above sea level.

Climate

Alaska's climate is variable, due to the state's large size. The southeastern and southcentral coasts are wet and mild, the interior is cool and dry, and the northern region experiences very cold, dry weather.

The record high temperature in Alaska was 100 degrees Fahrenheit at Fort Yukon in 1915. The record low temperature was -80 degrees Fahrenheit at Prospect Creek Camp in 1971.

 


Historical Notes

Outsiders first discovered Alaska in 1741, when Danish explorer Vitus Bering sighted it on a voyage from Siberia.

The first settlement in Alaska was established by Russian whalers and fur traders on Kodiak Island in 1784.

After expanding their reach all the way to Sitka, war broke out in Europe in the 1820's, and the Russians began to lose interest in Alaska.

In 1867, U.S. Secretary of State William H. Seward offered Russia $7,200,000, or two cents per acre, for Alaska.

On October 18, 1867, Alaska officially became the property of the United States, to the chagrin of many Americans, who called the purchase "Seward's Folly."

Joe Juneau's 1880 discovery of gold ushered in the gold rush era. Thousands of people flocked to Alaska, seeking their fortune in the wild frontier.

After the gold rush clamor subsided and while the country battled a depression, most of the nation forgot about the territory thousands of miles to the northwest.

When America declared war on Japan in 1941, Alaska's strategic position became apparent, and Americans once again perceived "Seward's Folly" to be an asset.

In 1943, Japan invaded the Aleutian Islands which started the "One Thousand Mile War," the first battle fought on American soil since the Civil War.

In 1958, Congress finally approved the Alaska Statehood Act, and Alaska officially became the 49th state on January 3, 1959.

Today, Alaska is prized for its natural beauty and its vast supply of natural resources.

 


Economy

By far, Alaska's most important revenue source is the oil and natural gas industry, about 90% of the state's revenues.

Alaska accounts for 25% of the oil produced in the United States.

Located near Prudhoe Bay, on the northern Alaskan coast, is North America's largest oil field. Every day, millions of gallons of oil are removed from Prudhoe Bay and pumped through the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. The pipeline, maintained by Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, snakes its way from Prudhoe Bay on Alaska's northern coast to the southcentral port of Valdez where the oil is pumped into tankers. One of the largest pipeline systems in the world, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline moves up to 88,000 barrels of oil per hour on its 800 mile journey to Valdez.

The state's vast amount of oil revenues are invested in the Alaska Permanent Fund, an inviolate trust belonging to the people of Alaska. The fund, managed by the Permanent Fund Corporation, was established in 1976 to generate perpetual revenues from non-renewable sources for present and future generations of Alaskans.

The seafood processing and fishing industries are also important to Alaska. The fishing and seafood industry is the state's largest private industry employer. Alaska's waters are rich in seafood. Most of America's salmon, crab, halibut, and herring come from Alaska.

Forestry is important to Alaska's economy, especially that of the southeastern region. The timber industry, though currently undergoing much reform, provides thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue to Southeast Alaska.

Hard rock minerals are one of Alaska's most important undeveloped natural resources, including coal, gold, silver, copper, and many others. According to the Alaska Miners Association, "Alaska now provides the greatest opportunity for minerals exploration and development in all of North America."

 


Education

The Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education (ACPE) authorizes the operation of state postsecondary institutions, and provides postsecondary students with educational loans.

Public schools in Alaska are listed in the Department of Education's school rolodex.

The University of Alaska consists of three regional campuses: the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the University of Alaska Anchorage and the University of Alaska Southeast (in Juneau).

Alaska Pacific University has a campus in Anchorage, one in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley, and one in Homer.


Native Alaskan Information

 

The term Alaska Native, referring to Alaska's original inhabitants, includes Aleut, Eskimo and Indian groups who differ from each other in ethnic origin, language and culture. In 1996, Alaska Natives constituted 16.5% of the state's total population.

In 1971 the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) was passed by U.S. Congress. Alaska Natives received 44 million acres of land and $962.5 million, in exchange for the extinguishment of their aboriginal land claims. The cash and lands became the property of the 13 regional, 4 urban, and over 200 village Native corporations formed by the Act. Any Native Alaskan born before passage of the Act who could prove one-quarter blood Native ancestry, was eligible to enroll in a local and regional corporation, entitling him or her to 100 shares in both corporations.

To learn more about Alaska's indigenous people's please visit the Alaska Native Knowledge Network

 


The Alaska State Constitution

akconst.gif (13963 bytes)
  • Ordinance No. 1
  • Ordinance No. 2
  • Ordinance No. 3
  • Preamble
  • Article I Declaration of Rights
  • Article II The Legislature
  • Article III The Executive
  • Article IV The Judiciary
  • Article V Suffrage and Elections
  • Article VI Legislative Apportionment
  • Article VII Health, Education and Welfare
  • Article VIII Natural Resources
  • Article IX Finance and Taxation
  • Article X Local Government
  • Article XI Initiative, Referendum, and Recall
  • Article XII General Provisions
  • Article XIII Amendment and Revision
  • Article XIV Apportionment Schedule
  • Article XV Schedule of Transitional Measures
  • Courtesy of the state of Alaska


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