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Anchorage, Alaska

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Municipality of Anchorage
Flag of Anchorage
Official seal of Anchorage
Location of Anchorage within Alaska
Location of Anchorage within Alaska
Country United States
State Alaska
Borough Anchorage
Settled 1914
Incorporated November 23, 1920 (City of Anchorage);
January 1, 1964 (Greater Anchorage Area Borough);
September 15, 1975 (current Municipality of Anchorage, which combined the two)
Named for the anchorage at the mouth of Ship Creek
 • Mayor Dan Sullivan
 • City 1,961.1 sq mi (5,079 km2)
 • Land 1,697.2 sq mi (4,396 km2)
 • Water 263.9 sq mi (683 km2)
 • Urban
78.8 sq mi (204 km2)
 • Metro
26,312.5 sq mi (68,149 km2)
102 ft (31 m)
291,826 (64th in U.S.)
 • Density 171.9/sq mi (66.4/km2)
 • Urban
 • Metro

Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska, United States. With a population of 275,043 residents, it makes up more than two-fifths of the states population.


Anchorage was originally a construction camp during the building of the Alaska Railroad. By 1920 it had grown to the point where it was decided to officially make it a city. Being at the head of Cook Inlet it became an important place for shipping in Alaska because ships could load and unload cargo to and from the new railroad. In the 1940 an both the army and the air force built bases near Anchorage, and it got even bigger. In 1964 Anchorage was hit by the Good Friday Earthquake, the second strongest earthquake ever recorded. Over a hundred people died and a lot of buildings in and around Anchorage were destroyed. Over the next few years a lot of work went into rebuilding the city and making the buildings better in case there was another earthquake. In 1968 oil was discovered up in the Arctic region of Alaska, and Anchorage again got bigger quickly and merged with other towns in the area. Today it is a modern city with a very large international airport, a large sea port that is very busy, and all the other things you would expect to find in a big city.