1957 Alaska
Alaska's US Highway(s)

Welcome to a web site about the brief occurance of US numbered highways in the Last Frontier
The only number ever possibly used in Alaska was 97, the number used on much of the Alcan Highway.
This route appeared on the 1957 AAA Alaska map (Courtesy Oscar Voss).
No plans or proposed route was shown to connect the proposed segments of US 97.

Mr. Voss made a visit to AASHTO in Washington DC, and found out more about US 97 in Alaska:
"AASHTO's log of route number approvals indicate that no proposals for U.S. routes were ever approved, or even reached the route numbering committee, for Alaska Territory. However, the files show that U.S. 97 was conditionally approved for Alaska state in 1964, from the international border to Fairbanks. However, the condition was that the portion of the Alaska Highway in Canada not already bearing route number 97 (most of it in Yukon Territory - British Columbia already had a route 97 connecting to U.S. 97 in Washington) be renumbered 97, so that U.S. 97 in Alaska would be part of a continuous route 97 across Canada into the lower 48. Wouldn't you know it, those darned Canadians refused to change their route numbering, to the consternation of Alaska highway officials (as reflected in their letter to AASHTO in 1968), so the renumbering to U.S. 97 never happened.
The files indicate that Alaska's proposal was preceded by a vigorous tourism promotion campaign to extend route 97 into Yukon and Alaska, which AASHTO counted as a minus factor against Alaska's application. Also a minus factor was an earlier application for US 97 in Alaska, of which I could find no other record. Either or both may have led AAA to jump the gun in 1957-58, though that's just a guess."

But wait, there's more! James D. Teresco took a trip to Alaska in 2001 and on June 17, found a US 97 shield in Fairbanks. Okay so it was in the University of Alaska-Fairbanks Museum, but it was there. Click here to go to his photo page which shows that sign. Or this page, which also shows it.

US 97 [I] US 97 [II]

US 97 [I]
From: Yukon (Canada) border at Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge
To: Livengood
Length in AK: 289 mi
Dates in AK: 1957 - 1958; 1964 - 1968
Bannered Routes: none known
History in AK: 1957: route proposed; 1958: replaced by AK-2; 1964: conditionally approved by AASHTO; 1968: Withdrawn as conditons not met

US 97 [II]
From: Council
To: Nome
Length in AK: 73 mi
Dates in AK: 1957 - 1958
Bannered Routes: none known
History in AK: 1957: route proposed; 1958: replaced by Nome-Council Hwy

Click here for more Oscar Voss's Alaska Roads

Click here to go to US Highways

This page last updated Wednesday, January 30, 2002

Page originally created by Robert V. Droz on March 7, 2001