Records of Former Russian Agencies
(Record Group 261)
1802-1929 (Bulk 1817-1922)
552 cu. ft.
Table of Contents
- 261.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY
- 261.2 RECORDS OF THE RUSSIAN-AMERICAN COMPANY
1802, 1817-67 23 lin. ft.
- 261.3 RECORDS OF IMPERIAL RUSSIAN CONSULATES IN
THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA 1844-1929 (bulk 1862-1922)
263 rolls of microfilm
- 261.4 RECORDS OF THE RUSSIAN SUPPLY COMMITTEE
1914-22 603 lin. ft.
Related Records: General Records of the Department of State, RG 59.
Language Note: Most of the records in this record group are in Russian.
History: The Russian-American Company was established by Czar Paul I, July 8, 1799, with de facto political authority and a monopoly of trade in Russia's North American possessions, principally Alaska. It was administered by a board of directors in St. Petersburg, with control of affairs in Alaska by appointed governors general. Alaska headquarters of the company was established at Sitka in 1799. Except for the period 1802-4, when an Indian revolt drove out the Russians, Sitka remained company headquarters until Alaska was sold to the United States in 1867. Under terms of a treaty concluded March 30, 1867 (15 Stat. 541), "any Government archives, papers, and documents relative to the territory and dominion aforesaid, which may now be existing there," were transferred to the United States.
Textual Records (92 vols.): Letters sent to the board of directors in St. Petersburg and to subordinate local settlements, relating to native tribes, the Hudson's Bay Company, fur prices, transportation, food and supplies, farming and animal husbandry, and vital statistics, 1818-67. Letters received from the board of directors, relating to fur, trade, fisheries, native tribes, boundaries, and the Russian Orthodox Church, April 18, 1802 (only), 1817-66. Logs of company ships on the voyages to California, Siberia, China, the Hawaiian Islands, and Russia, 1850-67. Journals of explorations of Lt. Lavrentii A. Zagoskin into the lower Yukon basin and the southwestern mainland of Alaska, 1842-44; and of Capt. N. Arkhimandritov on Kodiak Island, Norton Sound, and the Pribilof Islands, June-August 1860, July- August 1864.
Microfilm Publications: M11.
Finding Aids: Daniel T. Goggin, comp., "Preliminary Inventory of the Records of Former Russian Agencies: Records of the Russian- American Company," NC 40 (1963).
History: Although the revolution of 1917 marked the end of the imperial Russian regime, consulates loyal to that regime continued to function in certain U.S. and Canadian cities until the late 1920's with the financial support of the U.S. and Canadian Governments. The records of those consulates were taken into State Department custody in 1933, and were transferred to the National Archives in 1949. In January 1990, the National Archives returned the records to the Soviet Union, while retaining a microfilm copy.
Textual Records: Microfilm copy of records of Russian consulates in New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Chicago, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, and Honolulu, 1844-1929 (1862-1922) (180 rolls). Microfilm copy of records of Russian consulates in Montreal and Vancouver, Canada, 1898-1922 (83 rolls).
Microfilm Publications: M1486, M1742.
History: Established, 1915, with central offices in New York, NY. The committee and its successor, the Division of Supplies of the Russian Embassy, coordinated and supervised the purchase of military supplies during World War I.
Textual Records: Correspondence with commercial firms and U.S. Government agencies, reports, and accounting and other records, including those of the Russian Mission of Ways of Communication in the United States, and of the Russian organization known as Pekosnarm (Commission in the United States of War Supply Committee of Petrograd District), 1914-22.
Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.
This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.