Origin of "Alaska"

Alaska State Name Origin


Alaska quarter

The U.S. Mint's commemorative quarter for Alaska features a grizzly bear with the state fish (salmon), the north star (see Alaska state flag and motto) and caption; "The Great Land" Alaska became the 49th state in 1959. Public domain image on Wikipedia.

Alaska quarter;    Photo by [file:field-file-photographer]/[file:field-file-source] ([file:field-file-license]).

What does "Alaska" mean?

The name Alaska originates from an Aleut word "Alyeska," meaning "great land." The Aleuts are people inhabiting the Aleutian Islands and western Alaska. Many state names trace their origin to native American languages. All State Name Origins




Unrestored native Alaskan art; Totem Heritage Center in Ketchikan, Alaska.  Photo by Jasperdo/Flickr (noncommercial use permitted with attribution/no derivative works).

Native Alaskan art
The King Cove Dancers - from one of the five last remaining Eastern Aleut villages still in existence; photo © Alaska Department of Commerce, Community, & Economic Development (used by permission).
Alaskan Aleut Dancers