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Facts about Juneau, Alaska for Kids


The City and Borough of Juneau is the capital city of Alaska. It is a unified municipality located on the Gastineau Channel in the Alaskan panhandle, and it is the second largest city in the United States by area. Juneau has been the capital of Alaska since 1906, when the government of what was then the District of Alaska was moved from Sitka as dictated by the U.S. Congress in 1900.

  • The municipality unified on July 1, 1970, when the city of Juneau merged with the city of Douglas and the surrounding Greater Juneau Borough to form the current municipality, which is larger by area than both Rhode Island and Delaware.
  • Downtown Juneau is nestled at the base of Mount Juneau and across the channel from Douglas Island.
  • In 2014, the population estimate from the United States Census Bureau was 32,406, making it the second most populous city in Alaska after Anchorage.
  • Juneau’s daily population can increase by roughly 6,000 people from visiting cruise ships between the months of May and September.
  • The Taku River, just south of Juneau, was named after the cold t’aakh wind, which occasionally blows down from the mountains.
  • Juneau is rather unusual among U.S. capitals in that there are no roads connecting the city to the rest of Alaska or to the rest of North America.
  • Today, Juneau remains the home of the state legislature and the offices of the governor and lieutenant governor.
  • Recent discussion has been focused between relocating the seat of state government outside of Juneau and building a new capitol building in Juneau; neither position has advanced very far.
  • The City and Borough of Juneau includes Douglas Island, a tidal island located to the west of mainland Juneau.
  • The University of Alaska Southeast Campus also offers lectures, concerts, and theater performances.
  • Since Juneau was split into two districts by the state during redistricting in the early 1990s, the districts comprising downtown Juneau, Douglas Island and surrounding areas have exclusively elected Democrats to the Alaska House of Representatives, while the districts comprising Mendenhall Valley and surrounding areas have mostly elected Republicans.
  • The University of Alaska Southeast is known for its research in regards to the Tongass National Forest and the Juneau Icefield.
  • Cars and trucks are transported to and from Juneau by barge or the Alaska Marine Highway ferry system.