- Alaska is nearly one-fifth the size of the continental 48 states. The second (Texas), third (California), and fourth (Montana) largest states’ areas combined would still be smaller than Alaska. Rhode Island, the smallest state, is 425 times smaller than Alaska.
- Mainland Alaska’s westernmost point on Seward Peninsula, Cape Prince of Wales, is only 53 miles from Russia.
- In Anchorage, on the day of the Summer Solstice (June 21), the sun rises at 4:20 a.m. and sets at 11:42 p.m. In Barrow, the northernmost town of Alaska and the United States, the sun doesn’t completely set for 82 days (May 11–July 31) during the Spring-Summer.
- Alaska has the lowest density, at 1.2 people per square mile.
- Alaska has more than 100,000 glaciers.
- Alaska produces 10% of all American crude oil, placing it at third, behind Texas and North Dakota. In 1988, though, at the peak of its oil production, 25% of all American crude oil came from Alaska.
- Juneau remains the only state capital in the U.S. that is not connected to outside cities by roads. One must get there by boat, ferry, or plane. Attempts at connecting Juneau to the rest of Alaskan roads are underway.
- Alaska was purchased for $7.2 million, from Russia in 1867. This price is equivalent to about 2 cents an acre.
- Alaska has the longest coastline of any state, at 6,640 miles (NOAA).
- The Aleutian Islands Campaign (1942-1943) saw the Japanese gain control of the Attu, Agattu, and Kiska, the only parts of North America occupied by Japanese troops during World War II. The Aleutian Islands were the only place of fighting that occurred on American soil during World War II.
- Prudhoe Bay oil field is the largest oil field in the United States.
- Tongass National Forest is the largest national forest in the United States.
- Out of the top 20 highest peaks in the United states, 17 are in Alaska.
- Benny Benson, a 13 year old, designed the to-be flag of Alaska in 1926.
- A third of Alaska lies within the Arctic Circle.
- The highest temperature recorded in Alaska was at Fort Yukon in 1915: 100°F. The lowest temperature recorded in the United States was at Prospect Creek in 1971: -80°F.
Quick Facts Panel:
Population (2010): 710,231
-Percent Gain from 2000: 13.3%
Total Area: 663,267.7 sq. mi.
-Land: 571,951.3 sq. mi.
-Water: 91,316 sq. mi.
Nickname: Last Frontier, Land of the Midnight Sun
Motto: “North to the Future”
Density: 1.2 people per sq. mi. (US density-87.5 people per sq. mi.)
Statehood: January 3, 1959
Major Cities (ranked by population):
Electoral votes: 3
U.S. Representatives: 1
National Parks: Gates of the Arctic, Kobuk Valley, Denali, Wrangell-St. Elias, Lake Clark, Katmai, Glacier Bay, Kenai Fjords
Highest point: Mt. McKinley, 20,320 ft
Lowest point: Pacific Ocean, 0 ft
Natural Resources: oil, fish (predominantly salmon), potatoes
State flower: forget-me-not
2-Wholesale or retail trade 22%
3-federal services 13%
Productions: greenhouse products, hay, milk, potatoes, and livestock (predominantly cattle)
Exports: coal, aircraft engines, pistol engines, chicken meat
Places to Visit-Photo Gallery: