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Early Alaska City Celebrates Vibrant Past and Promising Future

Published On: Sep 04 2013 10:30:00 PM AKDT

It's a community with some of the richest history in Alaska and you can still find remnants of its turbulent and also culturally proud past.

As we continue to share Alaska's story we realize we need to understand more of Sitka's story. This is where the Alaska Purchase took place at a site above Sitka called Castle Hill. It's there, where on October 18 1867, the Russians transferred possession of Alaska to Secretary of the Interior, William Seward.

But centuries before it was a land run by Russian traders who were drawn to this area in pursuit of the sea otter and their valuable pelts. The area’s first people, the Tlingit, were displaced after the Battle of Sitka in 1804. But this rich culture lives on in modern day Sitka with traditional totem poles at Sitka National Historical Park along with the Russian influence in the center of town, St. Michael's Church.