Stories

ARCC: The American Russian Commercial Company

Before ARCCoM there was ARCC- The American Russian Commercial Company. Founded in 1853 by Peter Kostromitanov, an agent of the Russian American Company (who later became Russian Consul in San Francisco) and a handful of San Francisco business owners, ARCC was initially chartered with one unique purpose: the import of Alaskan ice for distribution in […]

Stories

The Russian American Company

While firms such as Ropes and Co. were establishing themselves as players in the trans-Atlantic trade, the Russian American Company had been established as both a commercial and colonial force in the Pacific. After several Russian explorations of the Alaskan coast b, private merchants in Russia pushed the government to grant an official charter for establishing regular […]

Stories

Ropes and Co: The First American Firm in Russia

By 1825, the nature of Russian-American trade had begun to change. America was expanding and with expansion came economic diversification – not only in the variety of cash crops available for export, but with the number of countries that were willing to trade. While still an important source for iron and other building materials (especially in […]

Stories

American-Russian Trade, Pt. 2

Despite the importance of the trade relationship, bilateral, relations were slow to get started. The burgeoning American nation made its first attempt at approaching Russia on a high level during the revolutionary war, when the US Continental Congress appointed Francis Dana as ambassador to Russia. Dana, the personal secretary of John Adams, was given two […]

Stories

American-Russian Trade, Pt. 1

American merchants were handicapped when special problems arose, such as delays in loading that forced them to spend the winter in Russia. They also faced the vagaries of the Russian climate, arbitrary Customs rulings on import duties, and unexpected competition. -Norman Saul, Distant Friends: The United States and Russia, 1763-1867 For businesses involved in American-Russian […]