Alexander Archipelago is a three-hundred-mile-long
archipelago, or group of islands, off
the southeastern coast of Alaska.
contains about 1,100 islands, which are the tops of the submerged
coastal mountains that rise steeply from the Pacific Ocean.
Deep channels and fjords separate the
islands and cut them off from the mainland. The northern part of
the Inside Passage
is sheltered by
the islands as it winds its way among them.
The islands have irregular, steep coasts and dense evergreen
and temperate rain forests
largest islands are Chichagof Island, Admiralty
Island, Revillagigedo Island, Kupreanof
Island and Prince of Wales Island.
All the islands are rugged, densely
forested, and have an abundance of wildlife.
and Kaigani Haida
people are native to the area.
Tsimshian people found on Annette Island are not originally from the
area, having immigrated to the region from British
Columbia in the late
Ketchikan on Revillagigedo Island and Sitka
on Baranof Island are the largest towns on
the islands. The largest town of the region, Juneau, is actually on the mainland and hence not part of
Tourism, fishing, and logging are the main industries of the
The archipelago was visited by the Russians in 1741 and was later
explored by Britain, Spain, and the United States. Control of the
islands passed from Russia to the United States with the Alaska Purchase
According to Donald Orth's Dictionary of Alaska Place Names (p.64),
the Alexander Archipelago received its name from the U.S. Coast and
Geodetic Survey in 1867. The island chain is named for Tsar Alexander
On an 1860 map of Russian America (Alaska), the island group is
called the King George III Archipelago.