Alaska is an unusual place. It is by far the largest state in the U.S. but it has one of the smallest populations. I suppose it has to do with the fact that most of Alaska is uninhabitable wilderness with arctic conditions.
Alaska is 663,267 sq. miles, which is almost 2.5 times the size of Texas. (Take that Texas!)
On the other hand, Alaska has a population of just over 730,000 people, which is the second smallest of any state. On top of that, over 40% of Alaska’s population lives in Anchorage. Another 90,000 live in the Fairbanks area, and another significant chunk of the population lives in Juneau and the surrounding cruise ports.
The rest of Alaska is speckled with small villages without roadway access. This includes my little village of Galena, located in the interior of Alaska on the Yukon River. You can read more about my village here and my first impressions of Alaska here.
Alaska was purchased for $7.2 million by Secretary of State William Seward in 1867. Despite only costing 2 cents per square mile, the purchase was ridiculed as “Seward’s Folly.” Seward got the last laugh when gold and oil were later discovered in Alaska.