Wandering Lizard

An online magazine with information related to attractions, lodging, dining,
and travel resources in selected areas of Alaska

Sitka City and Borough

Sitka City, once known as New Archangel, is located on Baranof Island, a part of the Alexander Archipelago off of the Southeastern coast of Alaska. These names speak to their Russian origins, but before the Russians arrived in the eighteenth century, the native Tlingit people knew it as Shee Atika. Alexandr Baranov, the head of the Russian-American Company and de-facto governor of Russian Alaska, established his headquarters in Sitka at the very beginning of the nineteenth century. At that time Sitka was also the center of the Russian Orthodox Diocese for Alaska and the Aleutian Islands. After the United States purchased Alaska from Russia in 1867, Sitka was the capital of the Department of Alaska and was administered by the Secretary of War with the senior U.S. official in the area being an Army Colonel. In 1877, Alaska was transfered from War to Treasury and the senior U.S. Official was the Collector of Customs. In 1879, it was handed to the Secretary of the Navy with the senior U.S. official being a Navy Captain. In 1884, Alaska was designated a District instead of a Department. In 1906, the capital was moved to Juneau. Today Sitka City is the largest city in area in the entire United States and one of the smallest in population.

Sitka Borough Sitka Borough
Sitka Borough Sitka Borough