History of the United States
History of Russia
History of Canada
Did Canada own Alaska before Russia?
Asked in Alaska, History of Canada
Why didn't Canada own Alaska?
Asked in Arctic Circle
Which country does not own land in the Arctic Circle?
Asked in History of the United States, Alaska, Russia
How did Russia come to own Alaska?
Russia has had a policy of expansion for hundreds of years. This expansion was markedly increased under Peter I (The Great), and Catherine II (The Great) especially. Vitus Bering undertook an expedition on behalf of the Russian Navy in 1741 and made the first European contact with Alaska. He brought high quality sea otter pelts back to Russia with him. This started a rush from Siberia towards Alaska resulting in a permanent European (Russian) settlement in 1784. Due to the fur trade not being as profitable as anticipated, Russia did not fully colonise Alaska, resulting in the Alaskan purchase by the USA in 1867.