Remembering the Statehood Celebration

by Dick Hoffmann

I have copies of both the Anchorage Daily Times (headline was WE'RE IN) and the News (headline was STATEHOOD)from the date congress voted for statehood.

My family attended the bonfire mentioned here on Anchorage Memories; that was a big fire!

Somewhere in the detritus of my life I have some black and white pictures I took with a Brownie camera of the bonfire. I also have a certificate showing that one of my parents voted in the referendum that ratified Alaskan's acceptance of statehood.

I was in the sixth grade at the time.

By the time the 49 star flag was actually raised on January 3, 1959, our family had moved to Juneau, where I witnessed the flag raising ceremony. I still have my own 49 star flag, although it might be a challenge to find it now.

A Note from Anchorage Memories


Could you imagine how those hearty souls who built and lived in Anchorage when it was just a "tent city" would have reacted when Alaska achieved statehood?

Mary of Anchorage Memories was in Anchorage and attended the bonfire with her family. That's a very special and fond memory for her, that she has shared with me many times.

My family and I had left Alaska for a short time, and we were not in Anchorage to enjoy the many celebrations.

Alaskans, and some years later, those living in our 50th state, Hawaii, were both able to go through the emotions and the celebrations of becoming a state in the United States of America. Not something most Americans get to experience.

Just one more thing that Alaskans can be proud of, and an incredible memory for everyone living in Anchorage at the time.

Thank you for recalling your memories of the Statehood celebration in Anchorage.

Anchorage Memories Newsletter, your fun, nostalgic, monthly magazine brings you memories of Anchorage back in the day. Plus you get a free Alaska book when you join! Check out Anchorage Memories Newsletter right now.

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The Statehood Debates in Fairbanks
by: Randall M Montriand

You can go on-line and listen to the taped recordings of the discussions at the UOFA Fairbanks that were so vital to the creation of our state and constitution.

Lots of hours, but so valid to those of us who listened and re-listened. Will NOT be a waste of your time.

So close in time to our lives and becoming a State. Great history on all sides presented.

So many ins and outs of what was to make us.

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