The Last Frontier
The tallest peak in North America is getting a name change: Alaska's Mount McKinley will now be called Denali, the White House announced Sunday.
"With our own sense of reverence for this place, we are officially renaming the mountain Denali in recognition of the traditions of Alaska Natives and the strong support of the people of Alaska," Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said. In 1898, a prospector named the mountain after William McKinley, who had just become the Republican nominee for president. The mountain — which stands at 20,320 feet and grows one millimeter every year — has long been called Denali (the Athabascan word for "the high one") by Alaskans. Since 1975, there has been a standing request by the state to change the name back to Denali, but politicians from McKinley's home state of Ohio always fought to keep it.
Obama will arrive in Alaska on Monday for a climate change summit in Anchorage. He will also meet with fisherman in Dillingham, hike a glacier in Seward, and cross the Arctic Circle to visit the rural town of Kotzebue, The Associated Press reports. In addition to bringing attention to melting glaciers and other issues, Obama is expected to detail steps that will be made to assist Alaskan Native communities.