CANCELED - F303 Summer 2020 For God and Tsar: The Russian Colonization of North America, 1741-1867
Thursdays, 11:50–1:15, July 23–July 30
Instructor: Peter Ansoff
The land wenow know as Alaska was the last corner of North America to be explored. Driven primarily by the fur trade, the Russian Empire extended its influence in this area as a natural extension of its colonization of Siberia in the late 18th century. In some respects, the Russian colonial experience paralleled that of the western European nations, but there were major differences due to culture, geography, economics, and politics. The Russian presence in northwestern North America also brought it into contact (both cooperative and hostile) with other powers, including Great Britain, Spain, the United States, and France. This course will discuss the origins and chronology of Russia’s American colony, including relations with the native peoples, the role of the Orthodox church, Russian colonizing efforts in California and Hawaii, and the eventual sale of Russian America to the United States.
Peter Ansoff retired in 2018 from a career as a support contractor for US Navy ship acquisition programs. He holds a BA in history from Vanderbilt University. His particular interests include maritime history and lighter-than-air aviation history. His father was born in Siberia.