On this date in 1867, the United States ratified a treaty with Russia, which led to the acquisition of Alaska! Also referred to as “The Alaska Purchase,” the treaty sent $7.2 million dollars to Russia in exchange for the land of Alaska. Geographically, the state of Alaska is twice the size of Texas, which meant the price per acre in the sale was less than three cents!
The treaty was orchestrated by President Lincoln’s Secretary of State William H. Seward. At the time, Seward received criticism for the deal. Many referred to the event as “Seward’s Folly” or “Seward’s Icebox.” These criticisms quickly disappeared with the Klondike Gold Rush in 1896. Roughly 100,000 people journeyed through Alaska in hopes of finding a fortune in gold. These events were recently dramatized in the Discovery Channel mini-series, Klondike.
Relive the Klondike Gold Rush with The Lasting Impact of Searching for Gold in the Klondike [02:19], Klondike Fever [26:00], and Klondike Gold Rush [02:22]!