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Prince William Sound

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Title: Prince William Sound  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: History of Alaska, Exxon Valdez oil spill, Chugach National Forest, Sea otter conservation, Alaska
Collection: Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, Landforms of Valdez–cordova Census Area, Alaska, Sounds of Alaska
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Prince William Sound

Prince William Sound, on the south coast of Alaska

Prince William Sound is a sound of the Gulf of Alaska on the south coast of the U.S. state of Alaska. It is located on the east side of the Kenai Peninsula. Its largest port is Valdez, at the southern terminus of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System. Other settlements on the sound, which contains numerous small islands, include Cordova and Whittier plus the Alaska native villages of Chenega and Tatitlek.

Prince William Henry, then aged thirteen and serving as a midshipman in the Royal Navy.[2]

In 1793, Alexander Andreyevich Baranov founded port Voskresensk in the sound, which he called Chugach Bay. The first three-masted ship, Phoenix, was the first ship built by the Russians in America.[3]:11-13

Most of the land surrounding Prince William Sound is part of the Chugach National Forest, the second largest national forest in the U.S. Prince William Sound is ringed by the steep and glaciated Chugach Mountains. The coastline is convoluted, with many islands and fjords, several of which contain tidewater glaciers. The principal barrier islands forming the sound are Montague Island, Hinchinbrook Island, and Hawkins Island.

A 1964 tsunami, a result of the Good Friday earthquake, killed a number of Chugach villagers in the coastal village of Chenega and destroyed the town of Valdez.

In 1989, the oil tanker Exxon Valdez ran aground on Bligh Reef after leaving Valdez, causing a large oil spill, which resulted in massive damage to the environment, including the killing of around 250,000 seabirds, nearly 3,000 sea otters, 300 harbour seals, 250 bald eagles and up to 22 killer whales.[4]

References

  1. ^ Explorations: Bering and Cook, Alaska.net
  2. ^ Philip Ziegler, King William IV (London: Collins, 1971, ISBN 978-0-00-211934-4), pp. 23-27
  3. ^ Khlebnikov, K.T., 1973, Baranov, Chief Manager of the Russian Colonies in America, Kingston: The Limestone Press, ISBN 0919642500
  4. ^ "1989: Exxon Valdez creates oil slick disaster". BBC. 1989-03-24. Retrieved 2007-12-03. 

External links

  • Activities in Prince William Sound
  • Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

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