A History Lesson on Juneau and Douglas' Independence Day Celebrations

    Early horse drawn float (1907). Photographer: Unknown (All images courtesy of Juneau Douglas City Museum)

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Ever wonder what Independence Day looked like before the fireworks, bike parades, and contests of today? Niko Sanguinetti, curator of collections at the Juneau Douglas City Museum, gave News of the North a little history lesson.

    Sanguinetti said Independence Day has been celebrated since the state was claimed by the United States in the 1800s. In Juneau, there has always been more than one set of festivities--on Douglas and in Juneau.

    "There have always been celebrations separate, on each side of the channel, and in the early mining days, when Douglas had both Douglas city and Treadwell city, and the multiple mines in the Treadwell complex, there were separate celebrations that sometimes merged together," she said.

    These festivities often included grand balls, races, games, sports, a reading of the Declaration of Independence, speeches, and, of course, parades. Sanguinetti said she strived to show parades from across the past several decades in the collection of photos shared with News of the North.

    All photos courtesy of the Juneau Douglas City Museum

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