Owning Alaska

by Kaitlyn McNeil

Owning Alaska

The United States effect of imperialism in adopting Alaska, was the delay it took. We were offered Alaska in 1857, by the powerful Russia, but the offer got turned away because of the soon to be Civil War. Russia re-offered the land of Alaska in 1867. After the war, Secretary of State, William Seward, snatched up the deal without thinking twice. Not a lot of people liked his quick thinking.

Seward's Influence

Everybody thought Seward's decision, also called Seward's Icebox, was a horrible deal. The popular idea was people thought Alaska was a pointless territory, that was a waste of the money spent on it. This kept going on until about 1872, until gold was discovered in wonderful Alaska. It basically paid for itself.

Gold Miners in Alaska

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How the Sphere of Influence affected the purchase of Alaska

Alaska was ours for $7.2 Million dollars. With all of that land, it's only about 2 cents an acre. That's a deal. Alaska became the 49th state of the U.S. But why would Russia offer up such a good deal? Because of the sphere of influence. Russia was DONE with trade settlements in the northern Pacific ocean, but they also wanted to make Great Britain Jealous. Russia and Great Britain weren't on good terms at the time, and Russian couldn't keep Alaska. They wanted nothing to do with the Northern Pacific any more, so they sold the land to the U.S., not wanting Britain to have anymore power.