Story last updated at 8/8/2012 - 1:07 pm
JUNEAU - In 1967 many communities in the state celebrated the centennial of Alaska's purchase by constructing new community facilities. Libraries, museums, civic centers and parks were built with a mixture of state, local and federal funding. Those projects have served Alaska's people well over the years and many are still in use.
The Alaska State Museum in Juneau is a centennial celebration building and one that is slated for replacement in the near future. A new building to house the combined State Library, Archives and Museum (SLAM) has been designed and is in the process of being scheduled for construction. The new facility is to be built upon the same site as the original building.
In cooperation with the City and Borough of Juneau and the State Office of History and Archaeology, a plan has been developed to memorialize this and other such centennial projects around Alaska. The plan calls for a publication to be produced to celebrate the centennial process as a whole and recognize the architectural, historical and community milestones the projects represent.
The View From the Future - 2017: 50 Years After the Alaska Purchase Centennial, will look back at each of the centennial projects to evaluate its economic, cultural and social contribution; celebrate and record the spirit of the communities that participated by developing a project or building; and explore the similarities and differences of the public dynamic that is present today within the various locations.
For the purposes of the publication, the state will be divided into regions with each region assigned a writer/historian and photographer. The publication will tell the compelling stories of each region through interviews and images of how each community has interacted with and benefited from the gift of a centennial building or project.
Writer and photographer teams selected for the project to date are: Nick Jans/Clark James Mishler; Dermot Cole/Patrick Endres; Kathleen McCoy/Jeff Schultz; Nancy Lord/Jim Lavakras; Ken Marsh/Matt Hage; and George Bryson/Mark Kelley. Tricia Brown, a former editor-in-chief of Alaska Magazine, will serve as the publication's editor.