Last modified: 2012-08-20 by rick wyatt
Keywords: seward | alaska | kenai peninsula borough |
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image by Eugene Ipavec, 12 February 2009
The city flag is city seal on a white background. It can be seen on a photo here: www.cityofseward.net/parksRec/parks.htm.
Valentin Poposki, 18 December 2008
Seward is a city in Kenai Peninsula Borough in the U.S. state of Alaska. According to 2005 Census Bureau estimates, the population of the city is 3,016. It was named after William H. Seward, early member of the United States Republican Party, United States Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln. As Secretary of State, he fought for the U.S. purchase of Alaska which he finally negotiated to acquire from Russia.
Seward, Alaska, is named after William H. Seward, a prominent New York Republican politician of the immediate pre-US Civil War period. He was a strong Abolitionist, i e, a proponent of the abolition of slavery throughout the US, and was considered the leading candidate for the Republican nomination for President of the United States in 1860 when an unknown railroad lawyer from Downstate Illinois named Abraham Lincoln came from nowhere to take the nomination. Lincoln appointed Seward as his Secretary of State, and he proved to be an adroit diplomat, preventing the Confederacy from gaining any European support despite the sympathy which many of the upper classes in the UK, France, etc., had toward the Confederacy.
After Lincoln's assassination, his successor, Andrew Johnson, asked Seward to stay in post as he knew little and cared less about foreign policy. The crowning achievement of Seward's second term as Secretary of State was his purchase of Russian America, as it was then known, from Russian America Company, which was largely owned directly by the Tsar. The cost was $7 million, an enormous sum in those days, but Seward felt it was necessary to provide an American foothold on the extreme northwest coast of North America as a potential check on possible British threats against the western United States. Also, Russian America was a financial liability to the Russians, and they needed the money, while the US felt under an obligation to the Russians as Seward had negotiated to keep Russia neutral during the Civil War and had even arranged for Russian naval squadrons to be based in New York and San Francisco.
Ron Lahav, 19 December 2008