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Alaska Highway highlighted in red
|Length||2,232 km (1,387 mi)|
(as of 2012)
|South end||Hwy 2 / Hwy 97 (John Hart Highway) in Dawson Creek, BC|
|North end||AK-2 / AK-4 (Richardson Highway) at Delta Junction, AK|
|Major cities||Fort St. John, BC; Fort Nelson, BC; Watson Lake, YT; Whitehorse, YT; Tok, AK; Delta Junction, AK|
|British Columbia provincial highways|
Territorial highways in Yukon
The Alaska Highway (French: Route de l'Alaska; also known as the Alaskan Highway, Alaska-Canadian Highway, or ALCAN Highway) was constructed during World War II to connect the contiguous United States to Alaska across Canada. It begins at the junction with several Canadian highways in Dawson Creek, British Columbia, and runs to Delta Junction, Alaska, via Whitehorse, Yukon. When it was completed in 1942, it was about 2,700 kilometres (1,700 mi) long, but in 2012, it was only 2,232 km (1,387 mi). This is due to the continuing reconstruction of the highway, which has rerouted and straightened many sections. The highway opened to the public in 1948. Once legendary for being a rough, challenging drive, the highway is now paved over its entire length. Its component highways are British Columbia Highway 97, Yukon Highway 1 and Alaska Route 2.
An informal system of historic mileposts developed over the years to denote major stopping points. Delta Junction, at the end of the highway, makes reference to its location at "Historic Milepost 1422". It is at this point that the Alaska Highway meets the Richardson Highway, which continues 155 km (96 mi) to the city of Fairbanks. This is often regarded, though unofficially, as the northwestern portion of the Alaska Highway, with Fairbanks at Historic Milepost 1520. Mileposts on this stretch of highway are measured from the port of Valdez on Prince William Sound, rather than the Alaska Highway. The Alaska Highway is popularly (but unofficially) considered part of the Pan-American Highway, which extends south (despite its discontinuity in Panama) to Argentina.
Proposals for a highway to Alaska originated in the 1920s. Thomas MacDonald, director of the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads, dreamed of an international highway spanning the United States and Canada. In order to promote the highway, Slim Williams originally traveled the proposed route by dogsled. Since much of the route would pass through Canada, support from the Canadian government was crucial. However, the Canadian government perceived no value in putting up the required funds to build the road, since the only part of Canada that would benefit was not more than a few thousand people in Yukon.
In 1929, the British Columbia government proposed a highway to Alaska to encourage economic development and tourism. American President Herbert Hoover appointed a board with American and three Canadian members to evaluate the idea. Its 1931 report supported the idea for economic reasons, but both American and Canadian members recognized that a highway would benefit the American military in Alaska. In 1933, the joint commission proposed the U.S. government contribute $2 million of the capital cost, with the $12 million balance borne by the Canadian and BC governments. The Great Depression and the Canadian government's lack of support caused the project to not proceed.
When the United States approached Canada again in February 1936, the Canadian government refused to commit to spending money on a road connecting the United States. The Canadians also worried about the military implications, fearing that in a war between Japan and North America, the United States would use the road to prevent Canadian neutrality. During a June 1936 visit to Canada, President Franklin D. Roosevelt told Prime Minister W. L. M. King that a highway to Alaska through Canada could be important in quickly reinforcing the American territory during a foreign crisis. Roosevelt became the first American to publicly discuss the military benefits of a highway in an August speech in Chautauqua, New York. He again mentioned the idea during King's visit to Washington in March 1937, suggesting that a $30 million highway would be helpful as part of a larger defense against Japan that included, the Americans hoped, a larger Canadian military presence on the Pacific coast. Roosevelt remained a supporter of the highway, telling Cordell Hull in August 1937 that he wanted a road built as soon as possible. By 1938, Duff Pattullo, the BC premier, favored a route through Prince George. The U.S. offered either a $15 million interest-free loan, or to cover half the construction costs.
The attack on Pearl Harbor and beginning of the Pacific Theater in World War II, coupled with Japanese threats to the west coast of North America and the Aleutian Islands, changed the priorities for both nations. On February 6, 1942, the construction of the Alaska Highway was approved by the United States Army and the project received the authorization from the U.S. Congress and Roosevelt to proceed five days later. Canada agreed to allow construction as long as the United States bore the full cost, and that the road and other facilities in Canada be turned over to Canadian authority after the war ended. It proved unimportant for the military because 99 percent of the supplies to Alaska during the war were sent by sea from San Francisco, Seattle, and Prince Rupert.[better source needed]
The Americans preferred Route A, which starting at Prince George, went northwest to Hazelton, along the Stikine River, by Atlin, Teslin and Tabish Lakes, and from Whitehorse, Yukon to Fairbanks, Alaska via the Tanana Valley. However, the route was vulnerable to possible enemy attack from the sea, experienced steep grades and heavy snowfall, and had no airbases along the way.
The Canadians favored Route B, also starting at Prince George, but followed the Rocky Mountain Trench up the valleys of the Parsnip and Finlay Rivers to Finlay Forks and Sifton Pass, then north to Frances Lake and the Pelly River in the Yukon. From there it went to Dawson City and down the Yukon Valley to connect the Richardson Highway to Fairbanks. The advantages of this inland route was the safe distance from enemy planes, and 209 miles (336 km) shorter with lower elevations enabling lower construction and maintenance costs. The disadvantages were the bypassing of respective airbases, and Whitehorse, the principal town in the Yukon. Optional variations in the southern portion of this route were via Vanderhoof to the west or Monkman Pass to the east.
Route C, the Prairie option, advocated by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, was the only practical one. It was far enough inland from enemy planes and it linked the airfields of the Northwest Staging Route that conveyed lend-lease aircraft from the United States to the Soviet Union. This option encountered more level terrain, not ascending a pass over 4,250 feet (1,300 m). There was also a railhead at Dawson Creek, British Columbia, and a winter trail from there to Fort Nelson, 300 miles (480 km) to the northwest. It followed the Rocky Mountain Trench toward Dawson City before turning west to Fairbanks.
The official start of construction took place on March 9, 1942, after hundreds of pieces of construction equipment were moved on priority trains by the Northern Alberta Railways to the northeastern part of British Columbia near Mile 0 at Dawson Creek. Construction accelerated through the spring as the winter weather faded away and crews were able to work from both the northern and southern ends; they were spurred on after reports of the Japanese invasion of Kiska Island and Attu Island in the Aleutians. During construction the road was nicknamed the "oil can highway" by the work crews due to the large number of discarded oil cans and fuel drums that marked the road's progress.
On September 24, 1942, crews from both directions met at Mile 588 at what became named Contact Creek, at the British Columbia-Yukon border at the 60th parallel; the entire route was completed October 28, 1942, with the northern linkup at Mile 1202, Beaver Creek, and the highway was dedicated on November 20, 1942, at Soldier's Summit.
The road was originally built mostly by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a supply route during World War II. In 1942, the Army Corps of Engineers assigned more than 10,000 men, about a third were black soldiers, members of three newly formed "Negro regiments". There were four main thrusts in building the route: southeast from Delta Junction, Alaska, toward a linkup at Beaver Creek, Yukon; north then west from Dawson Creek (an advance group started from Fort Nelson, British Columbia, after traveling on winter roads on frozen marshland from railway stations on the Northern Alberta Railways); both east and west from Whitehorse after being ferried in via the White Pass and Yukon Route railway. The Army commandeered equipment of all kinds, including local riverboats, railway locomotives, and housing originally meant for use in southern California.
Although it was completed on October 28, 1942, and its completion was celebrated at Soldier's Summit on November 21 (and broadcast by radio, the exact outdoor temperature censored due to wartime concerns), the "highway" was not usable by general vehicles until 1943. Even then there were many steep grades, a poor surface, switchbacks to gain and descend hills, and few guardrails. Bridges, which progressed during 1942 from pontoon bridges to temporary log bridges, were replaced with steel bridges where necessary. A replica log bridge, the Canyon Creek bridge, can be seen at the Aishihik River crossing; the bridge was rebuilt in 1987 and refurbished in 2005 by the Yukon government as it is a popular tourist attraction. The easing of the Japanese invasion threat resulted in no more contracts being given to private contractors for upgrading of specific sections.
Some 100 miles (160 km) of route between Burwash Landing and Koidern, Yukon, became nearly impassable in May and June 1943, as the permafrost thawed, no longer protected by a layer of delicate vegetation. A corduroy road was built to restore the route, and corduroy still underlays old sections of highway in the area. Modern construction methods do not allow the permafrost to thaw, either by building a gravel berm on top or replacing the vegetation and soil immediately with gravel. The Burwash-Koidern section, however, is still a problem as the new highway built there in the late 1990s continues to experience frost heave.
The original agreement between Canada and the United States regarding construction of the highway stipulated that its Canadian portion be turned over to Canada six months after the end of the war. This took place on April 1, 1946, when the U.S. Army transferred control of the road through Yukon and British Columbia to the Canadian Army, Northwest Highway System. The Alaskan section was completely paved during the 1960s. The lower 50 miles of the Canadian portion were paved in 1959, but the remainder was largely gravel. Now completely paved (mostly with bituminous surface treatment), as late as the mid-1980s, it included sections of winding dusty road sandwiched between high quality reconstructed paved segments.
The Milepost, an extensive guide book to the Alaska Highway and other highways in Alaska and Northwest Canada, was first published in 1949 and continues to be published annually as the foremost guide to travelling the highway.
The British Columbia government owns the first 82.6 miles (132.9 km) of the highway, the only portion paved during the late 1960s and 1970s. Public Works Canada manages the highway from Mile 82.6 (km 133) to Historic Mile 630. The Yukon government owns the highway from Historic Mile 630 to Historic Mile 1016 (from near Watson Lake to Haines Junction), and manages the remainder to the U.S. border at Historic Mile 1221. The State of Alaska owns the highway within that state (Mile 1221 to Mile 1422).
The Alaska Highway was built for military purposes and its route was not ideal for postwar development of northern Canada. Rerouting in Canada has shortened the highway by about 35 miles (56 km) since 1947, mostly by eliminating winding sections and sometimes by bypassing residential areas. The historic milepost markings are therefore no longer accurate but are still important as local location references. Some old sections of the highway are still[when?] in use as local roads, while others are left to deteriorate and still others are plowed up. Four sections form local residential streets in Whitehorse and Fort Nelson, and others form country residential roadways outside of Whitehorse. Although Champagne, Yukon was bypassed in 2002, the old highway is still completely in service for that community until a new direct access road is built.
Rerouting continues, expected to continue in the Yukon through 2009[needs update], with the Haines Junction-Beaver Creek section covered by the Canada-U.S. Shakwak Agreement. The new Donjek River bridge was opened September 26, 2007, replacing a 1952 bridge. Under Shakwak, U.S. federal highway money is spent for work done by Canadian contractors who win tenders issued by the Yukon government. The Shakwak Project completed the Haines Highway upgrades in the 1980s between Haines Junction and the Alaska Panhandle, then funding was stalled by Congress for several years.
The Milepost shows the Canadian section of the highway now to be about 1,187 miles (1,910 km), but the first milepost inside Alaska is 1222. The actual length of the highway inside Alaska is no longer clear because rerouting, as in Canada, has shortened the route, but unlike Canada, mileposts in Alaska are not recalibrated. The BC and Yukon governments and Public Works Canada have recalibrated kilometre posts. The latest BC recalibration was carried out in 1990; using its end-point at the border at Historic Mile 630, the Yukon government has recalibrated in three stages: in 2002, from Mile 630 to the west end of the Champagne revision; in fall 2005, to a point just at the southeast shore of Kluane Lake, and in fall 2008, to the border with Alaska.
There are historical mileposts along the B.C. and Yukon sections of the highway, installed in 1992, that note specific locations, although the posts no longer represent accurate driving distance. There are 80 mileposts in B.C., 70 in Yukon and 16 in Alaska with a simple number marker of the original mile distance. There are 31 "historic signs" in B.C., 22 in Yukon and 5 in Alaska, identifying the significance of the location. There are 18 interpretive panels in B.C., 14 in Yukon and 5 in Alaska which give detailed text information at a turn-off parking area.
The portion of the Alaska Highway in Alaska is designated Alaska Route 2. In Yukon, it is Highway 1 (designated in 1968) and in British Columbia, Highway 97. The portion of the Alaska Highway in Alaska is also unsigned Interstate A-1 and unsigned Interstate A-2.
The Canadian section of the road was delineated with mileposts, based on the road as it was in 1947, but over the years, reconstruction steadily shortened the distance between some of those mileposts. In 1978, metric signs were placed on the highway, and the mileposts were replaced with kilometre posts at the approximate locations of a historic mileage of equal value, e.g. km post 1000 was posted about where historical Mile 621 would have been posted.
As reconstruction continues to shorten the highway, the kilometre posts, at 2-kilometre (1.2 mi) intervals, were recalibrated along the B.C. section of road to reflect the driving distances in 1990. The section of highway covered by the 1990 recalibration has since been rendered shorter by further realignments, such as near Summit Pass and between Muncho Lake and Iron Creek.
Based on where those values left off, new Yukon kilometre posts were erected in fall 2002 between the B.C. border and the west end of the new bypass around Champagne, Yukon; in 2005, additional recalibrated posts continued from there to the east shore of Kluane Lake near Silver City; and in fall 2008, from Silver City to the boundary with Alaska. Old kilometre posts, based on the historic miles, remained on the highway, after the first two recalibrations, from those points around Kluane Lake to the Alaska border. The B.C. and Yukon sections also have a small number of historic mileposts, printed on oval-shaped signs, at locations of historic significance; these special signs were erected in 1992 on the occasion of the highway's 50th anniversary.
The Alaska portion of the highway is still marked by mileposts at 1-mile (1.6 km) intervals, although they no longer represent accurate driving distance, due to reconstruction.
The historic mileposts are still used by residents and businesses along the highway to refer to their location, and in some cases are also used as postal addresses.
Residents and travelers, and the government of the Yukon, do not use "east" and "west" to refer to direction of travel on the Yukon section, even though this is the predominant bearing of the Yukon portion of the highway; "north" and "south" are used, referring to the south (Dawson Creek) and north (Delta Junction) termini of the highway. This is an important consideration for travelers who may otherwise be confused, particularly when a westbound travel routes southwestward or even due south to circumvent a natural obstacle such as Kluane Lake.
Some B.C. sections west of Fort Nelson also route more east-to-west, with southwest bearings in some section; again, "north" is used in preference to "west".
Since 1949 The Milepost, an exhaustive guide to the Alaska Highway and all other routes through the region, has been published each year.
The community Wonowon, British Columbia, is named by its location at mile 101, spoken "one-oh-one".
Proposed U.S. Route 97 designation
|Location||Alaska Route 2|
|History||Proposed, but never designated|
The portion of the Alaska Highway in Alaska was planned to become part of the United States Numbered Highway System, and to be signed as part of U.S. Route 97 (US 97). In 1953, the British Columbia government renumbered a series of highways to Highway 97 between the U.S. border at Osoyoos, US 97's northern terminus, and Dawson Creek. In 1964, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) approved an extension of US 97 from the Yukon border to Livengood along Route 2, conditional to Yukon renumbering its portion of the Alaska Highway; the Yukon government declined to renumber its portion of the highway and approval was withdrawn in 1968.
The pioneer road completed in 1942 was about 1,680 miles (2,700 km) from Dawson Creek to Delta Junction. The Army then turned the road over to the Public Roads Administration, which then began putting out section contracts to private road contractors to upgrade selected sections of the road. These sections were upgraded, with removal of excess bends and steep grades; often, a traveler could identify upgraded sections by seeing the telephone line along the PRA-approved route alignment. When the Japanese invasion threat eased, the PRA stopped putting out new contracts. Upon hand-off to Canada in 1946, the route was 1,422 miles (2,288 km) from Dawson Creek to Delta Junction.
The route follows a northwest then northward course from Dawson Creek to Fort Nelson. On October 16, 1957, a suspension bridge crossing the Peace River just south of Fort St. John collapsed. A new bridge was built a few years later. At Fort Nelson, the road turns west and crosses the Rocky Mountains, before resuming a westward course at Coal River. The highway crossed the Yukon-BC border nine times from Mile 590 to Mile 773, six of those crossings were from Mile 590 to Mile 596. After passing the south end of Kluane Lake, the highway follows a north-northwest course to the Alaska border, then northwest to the terminus at Delta Junction.
Postwar rebuilding has not shifted the highway more than 10 miles (16 km) from the original alignment, and in most cases, by less than 3 miles (4.8 km). It is not clear if it still crosses the Yukon-BC border six times from Mile 590 to Mile 596.[why?]
Interstate Highway System
|Location||Canada to Tok (A1)|
Tok to Delta Junction (A2)
|Length||325.38 mi (523.65 km)|
The Alaska portion of the Alaska Highway is an unsigned part of the Interstate Highway System east of Fairbanks. The entire length of Interstate A-2 follows Route 2 from the George Parks Highway (Interstate A-4) junction in Fairbanks to Tok, east of which Route 2 carries Interstate A-1 off the Tok Cut-Off Highway to the international border. Only a short piece of the Richardson Highway in Fairbanks is built to freeway standards.
United States Numbered Highway System
At one point, the Alaskan portion of the Alaska Highway was proposed to be designated part of U.S. Highway 97 (US 97), but this was never carried out. Certain prior editions of United States Geological Survey topographic maps, mostly published during the 1950s, do bear the US 97 highway shield along or near portions of the current AK-2. The Alaska International Rail and Highway Commission lobbied for the designation of US 97 from Fairbanks to Mexico City in the late 1950s.
|Province / Territory / State||Location||km||mi||Destinations||Notes|
|British Columbia||Dawson Creek||0.0||0.0|| Hwy 2 east to Hwy 49 – Spirit River, Grande Prairie, Edmonton|
Hwy 97 south (John Hart Highway) – Chetwynd, Tumbler Ridge, Prince George
|Alaska Highway southern terminus|
|Taylor||53.5||33.2||Crosses the Peace River|
|Fort St. John||71.7||44.6||100th Street – Cecil Lake, Fairview|
|Charlie Lake||84.2||52.3||Hwy 29 south – Hudson's Hope, Chetwynd|
|Fort Nelson||452.8||281.4||50 Street, Liard Street|
|||481.2||299.0||Hwy 77 north (Liard Highway) – Fort Liard, Fort Simpson|
|594.2||369.2||Summit Pass – 1,267 m (4,157 ft)|
|760.1||472.3||Crosses the Liard River|
|Yukon||||902.7||560.9||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|British Columbia||||903.9||561.7||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|Yukon||||906.6||563.3||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|British Columbia||||915.0||568.6||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|Yukon||||916.8||569.7||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|British Columbia||||919.2||571.2||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|Yukon||near Lower Post||964.1||599.1||British Columbia – Yukon border|
Hwy 97 northern terminus • Hwy 1 southern terminus
|Watson Lake||976.4||606.7||Hwy 4 north (Robert Campbell Highway) – Ross River, Faro|
|Upper Liard||987.6||613.7||Crosses the Liard River|
|||997.6||619.9||Hwy 37 south (Stewart–Cassiar Highway) – Dease Lake, BC, Stewart, BC|
|British Columbia||||1,097.6||682.0||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|Yukon||||1,161.9||722.0||British Columbia – Yukon border|
|Teslin||1,201.9||746.8||Crosses Nisutlin Bay (Teslin Lake)|
|Johnsons Crossing||1,253.2||778.7||Hwy 6 north (Canol Road) – Ross River|
|Jake's Corner||1,253.2||778.7||Hwy 8 west (Tagish Road) – Tagish, Carcross, Atlin, BC|
|||1,350.2||839.0||Crosses the Yukon River|
|Carcross Cutoff||1,361.4||845.9||Hwy 2 south (Klondike Highway) – Carcross, Tagish, Skagway, AK||South end of Hwy 2 concurrency|
|Whitehorse||1,376.2||855.1||South Access Road|
|1,382.0||858.7||Hamilton Boulevard, Two Mile Hill Road|
|1,393.7||866.0||Hwy 2 north (Klondike Highway) – Carmacks, Dawson City||North end of Hwy 2 concurrency|
|Haines Junction||1,533.9||953.1||Hwy 3 south (Haines Highway) – Haines, AK|
|Canada–United States border||1,856.6||1,153.6||Alcan - Beaver Creek Border Crossing|
Hwy 1 northern terminus • AK-2 southern terminus
|Alaska||Tetlin Junction||1,981.4||1,231.2||AK-5 north (Taylor Highway) – Eagle, Dawson City, YK|
|Tok||2,001.5||1,243.7||AK-1 west (Tok Cut-Off Highway) – Valdez, Anchorage|
|Delta Junction||2,174.7||1,351.3|| AK-4 south (Richardson Highway) – Glennallen|
AK-2 north (Richardson Highway) – Fairbanks
|Alaska Highway northern terminus|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi|
Bypassed road segments still in use
- Mile 301 to 308, now local residential feeder roads Wildflower Drive, Highland Road, Valleyview Drive
- Mile 898, now local residential road just west of Yukon River Bridge
- Mile 920.3 to 922.5, now the southern and northern portions of Centennial Street; middle portion is Birch Street
- Mile 922.5 to 922.7, now a portion of Azure Road
- Mile 924, now a portion of Cousins Airfield Road
- Mile 925.5 to 926.9, now Parent Road (east end overlooks Alaska Highway/Klondike Highway junction)
- Mile 927.2 to 927.7, now Echo Valley Road
- Mile 928 to 928.3, now Jackson Road
- Mile 929 to 934, now Old Alaska Highway
- Mile 968, now entrance road to Mendenhall River Subdivision
Champagne-Aishihik traditional territory
- Mile 969 to 981, Champagne loop (bypassed in fall 2002 by 8.6-mile (13.8 km) revision)
- Mile 1016, Hume Street in Haines Junction including access to First Nation subdivision
Alaska-Canada Military Highway (Segment)
Bypassed segment still in use, southeast of Delta Junction
|Location||About 37 miles (60 km) southeast of Delta Junction|
|Nearest city||Delta Junction|
|NRHP reference No.||13000543|
|Added to NRHP||July 31, 2013|
- Mile 1348, one 2.5-mile (4.0 km) bypassed section of the original route, about 37 miles (60 km) southeast of Delta Junction, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as "one of the few sections of the road in Alaska virtually unchanged". The unpaved road is used by local residents to access Craig Lake, and is signed as Craig Lake Trail.
Other former segments have deteriorated and are no longer usable. More recent construction projects have deliberately plowed up roadway to close it.
- Inter-American Highway
- R504 Kolyma Highway
- List of Yukon territorial highways
- Pan-American Highway
- Sign Post Forest
- Alcan–Beaver Creek Border Crossing
- "Timeline: Alaska from Russian Colony to U.S. State". American Experience. WGBH/PBS. 2010. Retrieved January 8, 2012.
- "Alaska Highway". The Milepost. Morris Visitor Publications. Archived from the original on January 19, 2012. Retrieved January 8, 2012.
- "The Pan American Highway". How Stuff Works. Retrieved April 27, 2012.
- "How Road Will Benefit Prince George". Prince George Citizen. February 24, 1938. p. 5. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
- Prince George Citizen, October 3, 1998[full citation needed]
- Perras, Galen Roger (1998). Franklin Roosevelt and the Origins of the Canadian-American Security Alliance, 1933–1945: Necessary, but Not Necessary Enough. Praeger. pp. 19–22, 34–36. ISBN 0-275-95500-1.
- Prince George Citizen, September 5, 1992[full citation needed]
- Prince George Citizen: February 8, 1940, May 6, 1943, August 5, 1943, & September 5, 1992[full citation needed]
- "The Alcan Highway". Modern Marvels. Season 6. 2003.
- "Contact Creek". BC Geographical Names.
- "In Road-Building, Black Soldiers Defied Prejudice". The New York Times. July 23, 2012. Archived from the original on March 13, 2014. Retrieved September 10, 2015.
- "Collection: 'Pincers on Japan'". NFB.ca. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- "Film: 'Look to the North'". NFB.ca. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Conn, Stetson; Fairchild, Byron. "Chapter XV, The United States and Canada: Elements of Wartime Collaboration". The Framework of Hemisphere Defense. United States Army in World War II: The Western Hemisphere. Washington, DC: Office of the Chief of Military History, Department of the Army. OCLC 1036066.
- Prince George Citizen, July 21, 1959[full citation needed]
- Coates, Kenneth (1985). The Alaska Highway: Papers of the 40th Anniversary Symposium. University of British Columbia Press. p. 146. ISBN 9780774844116 – via Google Books.
- Coates, K.; Morrison, W. R. (1991). "The American Rampant: Reflections on the Impact of United States Troops in Allied Countries during World War II". Journal of World History. 2 (2): 201–221. JSTOR 20078500.
- "Yukon Highways Given Numbers". The Whitehorse Star. April 25, 1968. p. 21. Retrieved December 24, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
- "History". Highway 97 in British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, & California. Summit Solutions. 2011. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
- Federal Highway Administration. "Viewer" (Map). National Highway System. Archived from the original on August 27, 2007. Retrieved August 1, 2007.
- Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (April 2006). "Dwight D. Eisenhower Interstate Routes" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on July 27, 2009.
- "History". Highway 97 in British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, & California. Summit Solutions. 2011. Retrieved September 17, 2018.
- "Alaskan At Highway 97 Meeting". The Seattle Times. November 15, 1959. p. 73.
- Cypher Consulting (July 2015). Landmark Kilometre Inventory (PDF) (Report). British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. pp. 452–461.
- Google (October 20, 2017). "Alaska Hwy (Hwy 1) in Yukon" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved October 20, 2017.
- Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (April 25, 2006). Northern Region General Log (PDF). Routes 153000 (Elliott Highway), 152000 (Steese Highway), 190000 (Richardson Highway), and 180000 (Alaska Highway).[permanent dead link]
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
- The Milepost. Milepost : All-The-North Travel Guide (64th ed.). Morris Communications. 2012. p. 219. ISBN 978-189215429-3. ISSN 0361-1361.
- "NRHP listing for Alaska-Canada Military Highway". National Park Service. July 31, 2013. Archived from the original on July 7, 2014. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
- "NRHP nomination for Alaska-Canada Military Highway (Segment)" (PDF). National Park Service. July 31, 2013. Archived (PDF) from the original on July 7, 2014. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
- The short film Alaska Highway is available for free download at the Internet Archive
- Alaska Highway — A Yukon perspective — From the Yukon Archives
- Alaska Highway Driving Facts — From the authors of the Milepost
- Bell's Alaska — mile by mile description of the Alaska Highway
- Alaska Highway travel guide from Wikivoyage
- Building the Alaska Highway — Companion Website for the PBS program.
- Alcan-Highway.com — U.S. Army 95th Engineer Regiment (Colored) building the Alcan Highway
- Forgotten Facts About the African American Engineers Who Worked on the Alaska-Canada Highway - An article describing contributions made by the four African American regiments of the US Army Corps of Engineers that worked on the ALCAN Project
- Shortcut To Tokyo, September 1942 one of the earliest articles on the Alaskan Highway
- Many Wonders (but Few Amenities) on a Legendary Highway July 23, 2012 The New York Times
Learn MoreBelow is an embedded Wikipedia page related to Alaska-Canada Military Highway.
List of National Historic Landmarks in Alaska
The National Historic Landmarks in Alaska represent Alaska's history from its Russian heritage to its statehood. There are 50 National Historic Landmarks (NHLs) in the state. The United States National Historic Landmark program is operated under the auspices of the National Park Service, and recognizes structures, districts, objects, and similar resources according to a list of criteria of national significance. Major themes include Alaska's ancient cultures, Russian heritage, and role in World War II, but other stories are represented as well. In addition, two sites in Alaska were designated National Historic Landmarks, but the designation was later withdrawn. These sites appear in a separate table further below.
The National Historic Landmark Program is administered by the National Park Service, a branch of the Department of the Interior. The National Park Service determines which properties meet NHL criteria and makes nomination recommendations after an owner notification process. The Secretary of the Interior reviews nominations and, based on a set of predetermined criteria, makes a decision on NHL designation or a determination of eligibility for designation. Both public and privately owned properties can be designated as NHLs. This designation provides indirect, partial protection of the historic integrity of the properties via tax incentives, grants, monitoring of threats, and other means. Owners may object to the nomination of the property as a NHL. When this is the case the Secretary of the Interior can only designate a site as eligible for designation.
NHLs in Alaska
The table below lists all of the National Historic Landmark sites, along with added detail and description.
|||Landmark name||Image||Date designated||Location||County||Description|
|1||Adak Army Base and Adak Naval Operating Base||February 27, 1987
|Adak Station||Aleutians West||Established in 1942 as part of World War II, this military base was the launching pad for the American attack on the Japanese-held Aleutian Islands of Kiska and Attu.|
|2||Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall||June 2, 1978
|235 Katlian Street, Sitka||Sitka||This 1914 meeting hall and headquarters building served the original chapter of Alaska Native Brotherhood, founded by Tlingits in the early 1900s to fight discrimination and represent interests of natives.|
|3||Amalik Bay Archeological District||April 5, 2005
|Address restricted, Katmai National Park and Preserve||Kodiak Island||An archeological site located in Kodiak Island Borough|
|4||American Flag Raising Site||June 13, 1962
|On Castle Hill, Sitka||Sitka||In 1867, site of Russian flag lowering and American flag raising marking the transfer of Alaska to the U.S.; in 1959, after Alaska admitted as 49th state, site of first official raising of 49-star U.S. flag; also known as Castle Hill and Baranof Castle.|
|5||Anangula Site||June 2, 1978
|Nikolski||Aleutians West||Site of earliest signs of human occupation in the Aleutian Islands.|
|6||Attu Battlefield and U.S. Army and Navy Airfields on Attu||February 4, 1985
|Attu Island||Aleutians West||Site of bloody battle in which only 29 of 2,500 Japanese survived, only land battle on U.S. soil during World War II.|
|7||Bering Expedition Landing Site||June 2, 1978
|On Kayak Island||Valdez-Cordova||Site of first recorded contacts between natives and Europeans|
|8||Birnirk Site||December 29, 1962
|Address restricted, Barrow||North Slope||Sixteen prehistoric mounds of the Birnirk and Thule cultures.|
|9||Brooks River Archeological District||April 19, 1993
|Address restricted, Katmai National Park and Preserve||Lake and Peninsula||An archaeological site located along an ancient beach and modern river. There are twenty separate well preserved sites which have provided a large number of Arctic Small Tool Tradition artifacts.|
|10||Cape Krusenstern Archeological District||November 7, 1973
|Address restricted, Kotzebue||Northwest Arctic||The archeological district comprises 114 ancient beach ridges which formed nearly 60 years apart. They provide a rare sequential look at over 5000 years of inhabitation.|
|11||Cape Nome Mining District Discovery Sites||June 2, 1978
|Nome||Nome||Significant for role in the history of gold mining in Alaska|
|12||Chaluka Site||December 29, 1962
|Address restricted, Nikolski||Aleutians West||Includes a large mound; yields information about origins of Aleuts|
|13||Chilkoot Trail and Dyea Site||June 16, 1978
|Skagway||Skagway||Major access route from the coast to Yukon goldfields in the late 1890s.|
|14||Church of the Holy Ascension||April 15, 1970
|Unalaska||Aleutians West||Built in 1826 by the Russian American Fur Company to help acclimate indigenous population in Russian Alaska.|
|15||Dry Creek Archeological Site||June 2, 1978
|Address restricted, near Healy, Alaska||Denali||This archeological site has provided evidence which supports the Bering land bridge theory|
|16||Dutch Harbor Naval Operating Base and Fort Mears, U.S. Army||February 4, 1985
|Unalaska||Aleutians West||Only U.S. fortifications in the Aleutian Islands prior to bombing of Pearl Harbor, attacked by the Japanese Navy during the Battle of Dutch Harbor in June 1942.|
|17||Eagle Historic District||June 2, 1978
|Eagle||Southeast Fairbanks||Historic district with over 100 well-preserved buildings from the Gold Rush years on the Yukon River. Roald Amundsen announced his successful traverse of the Northwest Passage from here in 1905|
|18||Fort Durham Site||June 2, 1978
|Address restricted, near Taku Harbor in Juneau City and Borough, Alaska||Juneau||One of three Hudson's Bay Company posts set up in Alaska|
|19||Fort Glenn||May 28, 1987
|Fort Glenn||Aleutians West||Well preserved World War II defense base.|
|20||Fort William H. Seward||June 2, 1978
|Haines||Haines||Last of a series of 11 military posts established in Alaska during the gold rush era|
|21||Gallagher Flint Station Archeological Site||June 2, 1978
|Address restricted, Sagwon||North Slope||Discovered in 1970 during the construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, it was at the time the earliest dated archaeological site in northern Alaska.|
|22||Holy Assumption Orthodox Church||April 15, 1970
|Kenai||Kenai Peninsula||Russian Orthodox church in Kenai, Alaska.|
|23||Ipiutak Site||January 20, 1961
|Address restricted, Point Hope Peninsula||North Slope||The type site for the Ipiutak culture|
|24||Iyatayet Site||January 20, 1961
|Address restricted, Cape Denbigh Peninsula||Nome||Shows evidence of several separate cultures, dating back as far as 6000 BC.|
|25||Kake Cannery||December 9, 1997
|About 1 mile (1.6 km) southwest of Kake||Prince of Wales-Hyder||Built 1912-1940; significant for role in history of salmon canning in Alaska|
|26||Kennecott Mines||June 23, 1986
|East of Kennicott Glacier, about 6.5 miles (10.5 km) north of McCarthy||Valdez-Cordova||Site of discovery of copper in 1900 and subsequent mining activities|
|27||Kijik Archeological District||October 12, 1994
|Address restricted, Lake Clark National Park and Preserve||Lake and Peninsula||Related to the history of the Dena'ina Athabaskan Indians|
|28||Japanese Occupation Site, Kiska Island||February 4, 1985
|Kiska Island||Aleutians West||Site of the Japanese occupation of Kiska which along with nearby Attu were the only US land occupied by the Japanese during World War II|
|29||Kodiak Naval Operating Base and Forts Greely and Abercrombie||February 4, 1985
|Kodiak||Kodiak Island||World War II-related facilities|
|30||Ladd Field||February 4, 1985
|Fairbanks||Fairbanks North Star||Primary role during WWII was major stopping point for the Lend-Lease program.|
|31||Leffingwell Camp Site||June 2, 1978
|On Flaxman Island, about 58 miles (93 km) west of Kaktovik||North Slope||Campsite of geologist and polar explorer Ernest de Koven Leffingwell on Arctic coast of Alaska.|
|32||Nenana (river steamboat)||May 5, 1989
|Pioneer Park, Fairbanks||Fairbanks North Star||River steamboat; only surviving wooden one of this type.|
|33||New Russia Site||June 2, 1978
|South of Kardy Lake, about 3.5 miles (5.6 km) southwest of Yakutat||Yakutat||Site of Russian trading post attacked and destroyed by Tlingit natives.|
|34||Old Sitka||June 13, 1962
|Mile 6.9 of Halibut Point Road, about 6 miles (9.7 km) north of Sitka||Sitka||Also known as the Redoubt St. Archangel Michael Site, this was the site of a Russian-American Company settlement, established in 1799 and destroyed by Tlingit attack in 1802.|
|35||Onion Portage Archeological District||June 2, 1978
|Address restricted, Kiana||Northwest Arctic||Perhaps most important archaeological site in Alaska; caribou river crossing; human presence for millennia.|
|36||Palugvik Site||December 29, 1962
|Address restricted, Hawkins Island||Valdez-Cordova||Includes a large midden yielding information about Eskimo culture in the area.|
|37||Russian-American Building No. 29||May 28, 1987
|202-206 Lincoln Street, Sitka||Sitka||Siding covered log building; dates back to the years after the 1867 purchase of Alaska.|
|38||Russian-American Magazin||June 13, 1962
|101 East Marine Way, Kodiak||Kodiak Island||Storehouse building associated with the Russian and then the American trading companies active in Alaska.|
|39||Russian Bishop's House||June 13, 1962
|501 Lincoln Street, Sitka||Sitka||One of four surviving examples of Russian Colonial Style architecture in the Western Hemisphere.|
|40||St. Michael's Cathedral||June 13, 1962
|240 Lincoln Street, Sitka||Sitka||Primary evidence of Russian influence in North America.|
|41||Seal Island Historic District||June 13, 1962
|Pribilof Islands||Aleutians West||Historic buildings related to northern fur seal hunting in the Pribilof Islands and its restriction in 1911 and 1966.|
|42||Sheldon Jackson School||August 7, 2001
|801 Lincoln Street, Sitka||Sitka||Oldest institution of higher learning in Alaska|
|43||Sitka Naval Operating Base and U.S. Army Coastal Defenses||August 11, 1986
|Japonski Island, Makhnati Island and the causeway connecting them, near Sitka||Sitka||Commissioned as Sitka Naval Air Station in October 1939, it was redesignated the Naval Operating Base, July 1942. Protected the North Pacific during World War II.|
|44||Sitka Spruce Plantation||June 2, 1978
|Unalaska||Aleutians West||First recorded afforestation project in North America; Russian settlers began in 1805; attempt to make Unalaska self-sufficient in timber.|
|45||Skagway Historic District and White Pass||June 13, 1962
|Skagway and White Pass||Skagway||Historic frontier Gold Rush town and trail leading to White Pass on the border of Canada. Over 100 buildings from the era survive, though they are threatened by continued development. Mentioned in The Call of the Wild by Jack London.|
|46||George C. Thomas Memorial Library||June 2, 1978
|Fairbanks||Fairbanks North Star||The public library for Fairbanks from its construction in 1909 until the opening of the Noel Wien Public Library in 1977. Site of 1915 meeting between U.S. officials and native Alaskans to settle land claims.|
|47||Three Saints Bay Site||June 2, 1978
|Address restricted, Old Harbor||Kodiak Island||Site of the first Russian settlement in Alaska in 1784.|
|48||Wales Site||December 29, 1962
|Address restricted, Wales||Nome||Site of first discovery of how the Thule culture followed the Birnirk culture in precontact whaling populations of the Alaskan shoreline.|
|49||Walrus Islands Archeological District||December 23, 2016
|mouth of Bristol Bay||Dillingham Census Area, Alaska||Island group with deeply stratified sites covering 6,000 years of human occupation.|
|50||Yukon Island Main Site||December 29, 1962
|Address restricted, Yukon Island||Kenai Peninsula||Related to the Kachemak Bay Culture.|
Historic areas of the NPS in Alaska
National Historic Sites, National Historical Parks, some National Monuments, and certain other areas listed in the National Park System are historic landmarks of national importance that are highly protected already, often before the inauguration of the NHL program in 1960, and are then often not also named NHLs per se. There are three of these in Alaska. The National Park Service lists these three together with the NHLs in the state,
Cape Krusenstern National Monument is also an NHL and is listed above. The other two are:
|1||Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park||Skagway||Skagway||Park of Klondike Gold Rush, an NHL shared with Seattle, Washington.|
|2||Sitka National Historical Park||Sitka||Sitka|
Former NHLs in Alaska
|Date withdrawn||Locality||Borough or
|1||Gambell Sites||1962||1989||Gambell 
||Nome ||These five archeological sites established a chronology of human habitation on St. Lawrence Island, with evidence of four cultural phases of the Thule tradition, beginning about 2000 years before the present. Over the 20th century, the archeological value of the sites was largely destroyed due to ivory mining, and landmark designation was withdrawn.|
|2||Sourdough Lodge||1978||1994||Gakona 
||Valdez-Cordova ||Built of logs in 1903-05, this was one of a number of roadhouses built along the Valdez Trail. It was destroyed by fire in 1992, leading to withdrawal of its landmark status. By the time of its destruction, it was one of the oldest continuously-operating roadhouses in Alaska.|
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Alaska
- History of Alaska
- Historic preservation
- National Register of Historic Places
- List of U.S. National Historic Landmarks by state
- While the form 72000193 contains 2001 NHLD designation for the entire Sheldon Jackson School, the asset detail page references the original Sheldon Jackson Museum 1972 single-property enlistment.
- NPS Alaska NHL List
- "National Historic Landmarks Program: Questions & Answers". National Park Service. Retrieved 2007-09-21.
- "Title 36 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 65". US Government Printing Office. Archived from the original on 2012-02-17. Retrieved 2008-04-05.
- Numbers represent an alphabetical ordering by significant words. Various colorings, defined here, differentiate National Historic Landmarks and historic districts from other NRHP buildings, structures, sites or objects.
- The eight-digit number below each date is the number assigned to each location in the National Register Information System database, which can be viewed by clicking the number.
- Federal and state laws and practices restrict general public access to information regarding the specific location of this resource. In some cases, this is to protect archeological sites from vandalism, while in other cases it is restricted at the request of the owner. See: Knoerl, John; Miller, Diane; Shrimpton, Rebecca H. (1990), Guidelines for Restricting Information about Historic and Prehistoric Resources, National Register Bulletin, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, OCLC 20706997.
- "Sitka Naval Operating Base and U.S. Army Coastal Defenses". National Historic Landmarks Quioklinks. National Park Service. Archived from the original on 14 December 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- These are listed on p.110 of "National Historic Landmarks Survey: List of National Historic Landmarks by State", November 2007 version.
- Date of listing as National Historic Site or similar designation, from various sources in articles indexed.
- National Park Service (June 2011). "National Historic Landmarks Survey: List of NHLs by State" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-11-05. Retrieved 2011-07-04.
- National Park Service. "National Historic Landmark Program: NHL Database". Archived from the original on 2004-06-06. Retrieved 2007-10-04.
- National Park Service. "National Historic Landmark Program: Withdrawal of NHL Designation". Retrieved 2007-10-04.