Meeting of Frontiers: Digital Collections
The end of the Cold War in 1989 fueled a resurgence of ethnic, religious, and economic ties between Russia and Alaska—separated by the mere 58 miles of the Bering Strait—that date to the late 18th century. This English-Russian digital library of hundreds of photographs and prints, maps, manuscripts, sound recordings, books, and pieces of sheet music tells the story of the settlement of Alaska and Siberia and the connections forged across the border between Russia and the United States.
Several photograph collections document Alaskan lives and landscapes in the early 20th century, capturing the activities of native peoples, miners, and fisherman, as well as stunning panoramas of Alaskan wildlife and wilderness. Other photograph collections highlight the lives of natives and American expatriates in Siberia through town panoramas, churches, factories, picnics, and other festivities. Twenty-five full scores of popular songs sung by Siberian native peoples and Russian settlers in the late tsarist and early Soviet periods shed light on criminal activity, weddings and other aspects of day-to-day Russian life, and are provided in high-quality resolutions, allowing viewers to read the notes and play the music. A virtual exhibit provides historical context surrounding exploration, colonization, development, national identity, and perceptions across the border.
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