Feeding the Russian fur trade;: Provisionment of the Okhotsk by James R Gibson

By James R Gibson

James R. Gibson deals an in depth examine that's either an account of this bankruptcy of Russian historical past and a whole exam of the altering geography of the Okhotsk Seaboard and the Kamchatka Peninsula over the process centuries.

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Extra resources for Feeding the Russian fur trade;: Provisionment of the Okhotsk seaboard and the Kamchatka Peninsula, 1639-1856

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There were smaller saltworks in Kamchatka: in 1794 salt boilers at Tigilsk, Nizhne-Kamchatsk, and Petropavlovsk were each operated by twenty men. 45 There was another Russian settlement in Primorye-Anadyrsk -but it was not within the confines of the seaboard or the peninsula, MAP 3. 100 200 MI. 300 Km i i i 200 100 The Main Russian Settlements on the Okhotsk Seaboard and the Kamchatka Peninsula. o I i i o 16 PERSPECTIVE AND CONTEXT having been founded in 1649 on an island in the middle Anadyr River by Deshnev following his navigation of Bering Strait.

The next summer the ships continued eastward to the Aleutians. Here the Russians sought the few short stretches of sandy beach, where they built earthen huts for shelter and took hostages from the natives, forcing them to net or harpoon sea otters and to trap foxes in small parties, each party under a Russian leader. Half of the ship's crew hunted, while the other half guarded the vessel and the camp and sought and prepared food. 93 Sometimes the Russians hunted in baidaras (umi- HISTORICAL BACKGROUND 31 aks), made from the hide of sea cows and holding six to eight men each;94 but the use of Aleuts, with their exceptional skill in hunting sea otters by baidarka (kayak) and harpoon, was essential to the success of the hunt.

77 darker furs (such as most sable pelts) being marketed in Russia and Europe. Besides, China had its own source of sables in the Amur Valley, which Russia had lost in 1689 by the Treaty of Nerchinsk. Thus, sea otters, being lighter and scarcer than sables, dominated the Chinese market. In 1772 Pallas reported that furs, especially sea otter pelts, were by far the chief item of trade at Kyakhta. 78 A sea otter pelt there brought three to four times its Kamchatka price in the early 1740's, seven to eight times its Kamchatka price in the early 1750's, and two to four times its Kamchatka price in the late 1750's.

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