State of Alaska



ORIGIN OF STATE NAME: From the Aleut word alyeska, meaning "great land." NICKNAME: The Last Frontier; also, the Land of the Midnight Sun. CAPITAL: Juneau. ENTERED UNION: 3 January 1959 (49th). SONG: "Alaska's Flag." MOTTO: North to the Future. FLAG: On a blue field, eight gold stars form the Big Dipper and the North Star. OFFICIAL SEAL: In the inner circle symbols of mining, agriculture, and commerce are depicted against a background of mountains and the northern lights. In the outer circle are a fur seal, a salmon, and the words "The Seal of the State of Alaska." BIRD: Willow ptarmigan. FISH: King salmon. FLOWER: Wild forget-me-not. TREE: Sitka spruce. GEM: Jade. MINERAL: Gold. SPORT: Dogteam racing (mushing). LEGAL HOLIDAYS: New Year's Day, 1 January; Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., 3rd Monday in January; Lincoln's Birthday, 12 February; Washington's Birthday, 3rd Monday in February; Seward's Day, last Monday in March; Memorial Day, last Monday in May; Independence Day, 4 July; Labor Day, 1st Monday in September; Alaska Day, 18 October; Veterans Day, 11 November; Thanksgiving Day, 4th Thursday in November; Christmas Day, 25 December. TIME: noon GMT = 3 AM Alaska Standard Time, 2 AM Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time.


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Haycox, Stephen W., and Mary Childers Mangusso, ed. An Alaska Anthology: Interpreting the Past. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1996.

——. Frigid Embrace: Politics, Economics, and the Environment in Alaska. Corvallis: Oregon State University Press, 2002.

Hedin, Robert, and Gary Holthaus (eds.). The Great Land: Reflections on Alaska. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1994.

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Jenkins, Peter. Looking for Alaska. New York : St. Martin's Press, 2001.

Kizzia, Tom. The Wake of the Unseen Object: Among the Native Cultures of Bush Alaska. New York: Henry Holt, 1992.

Kollin, Susan. Nature's State: Imagining Alaska as the Last Frontier. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2001.

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McPhee, John. Coming into the Country . New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1977.

Ryan, Alan, ed. The Reader's Companion to Alaska. San Diego, Calif.: Harcourt Brace, 1997.