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Besides thorough coverage of current events in the United States, Harperís Weekly reported news and explored the cultures of nations and regions from around the globe.  Linking the journalís domestic and foreign coverage was its focus on diplomatic relations and cultural interaction between the United States and other countries.  To highlight that important focus of Harperís Weekly, this website contains news, feature stories, editorials, illustrations, and cartoons showcasing Russian-American relations over the 43-year period from 1863 through 1905.
  • The Russian Fleet visited the United States during the height of the American Civil War in 1863, discouraging French and English recognition of the Confederacy.
  • Secretary of State William Seward negotiated the $7 million purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867, to the dismay of Harperís Weekly.
  • Grand Duke Alexis toured the United States in 1871-1872, becoming the highest-ranking Russian official ever to do so.
  • The United States provided munitions to both sides during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878.
  • Russian pogroms against Jews contributed to an immigration boom to the United States in the 1880s and 1890s.
  • Americans sent relief supplies to battle the Russian famine of 1892.
  • In 1905, President Theodore Roosevelt successfully mediated peace to end the Russo-Japanese War, becoming the first American president to win the Nobel Peace Prize.

Note on Spelling

Harperís Weekly used three different spellings of the Russian emperorís title:  czar, tzar, and tsar.  The variants occur because the consensus on how best to transliterate the word from the Cyrillic alphabet changed over the years.  As always, the retyped HarpWeek version will reflect the exact spelling of the original Harperís Weekly text, and therefore will include all three variants.  For the HarpWeek commentary, we have chosen to use czar because it is the most common spelling in the items appearing on this website.

Selected items on Russian-American relations from the pages of Harperís Weekly, 1863 - 1905:

Support for the Union:  Russian Fleet Visits U. S., 1863
      Editorial and News

Seward's Folly:  Purchase of Alaska, 1867
      Editorial and News

A Diplomatic First:  Visit of Grand Duke Alexis, 1871 - 1872

The Balkans and Afghanistan:  American Arms for Russia, 1877 - 1878
      Russo-Turkish War
      Anglo-Russian Crisis

Russian Life and American Immigration, 1881 - 1892
      Famine Relief for Russia

Successful Mediation:  Theodore Roosevelt and the Russo-Japanese War, 1905
      Peace Talks

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