Alaska Purchase

Partitioning the North Pacific

the Arctic 1867.033

Alaska Purchase

Alaska Purchase, Rupert's Land Act, Amur, Opening of Japan (30 March 1867)

Historical Map of the Arctic & the Far North

While the British worried about the Americans in British Columbia, the Russians had come to accept that they could not defend isolated and sparsely populated Russian America against either nation. Although the Russians had started negotiations to sell the colony to the United States in 1859, talks were disrupted by the American Civil War, before finally being concluded in 1867 when US Secretary of State William Seward agreed to the purchase of what would soon be known as the territory of Alaska for $7.2 million.

Main Events

Dissolution of Queen Charlotte Is.

The British Colony of Queen Charlotte Islands was dissolved and amalgamated with British Columbia. In reality the colony only ever existed on paper and the Haida people dominated the islands (although their numbers would soon drop by 90% due to smallpox and other imported diseases).

Johnson's May 9 Declaration

The United States President Andrew Johnson declared that armed resistance in the American Civil War was "virtually" at an end and that nations or ships still harboring fugitives would be denied entry into US ports. Confederate President Jefferson Davis was captured the following day, although it would not be until 20 August 1866 that Johnson would formally proclaim the end of the war.

Austro-Prussian War

The northern German alliance led by the Kingdom of Prussia defeated the armed forces of the German Confederation led by the Austrian Empire. As a result of the victory, Prussia gained dominance over the German states.

United British Columbia colonies

The British colonies of Vancouver Island and British Columbia were united to form the United Colonies of Vancouver Island and British Columbia, generally still called the Colony of British Columbia. Both colonies had been laboring under huge debts, largely accumulated by the completion of extensive infrastructure to service the huge population influx and exacerbated by the decline in gold revenues.

Alaska Purchase

United States Secretary of State William H. Seward signed the Treaty concerning the Cession of the Russian Possessions in North America by his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russias to the United States of America (now commonly referred to as the 'Alaska Purchase'), agreeing to the US purchase of Russian America from the Russian government for $7.2 million, or about 2 cents per acre. The Senate ratified the treaty on 9 April 1867, with the House approving the appropriation of the money needed on 14 July 1868.

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