Cossacks – Friends of Indians
According to one version, in this photo, the participants of the Buffalo Bill’s "Indians and Cossacks show", popular in the United States at the end of the XIX – early XX century depicted. On the other, it is Hollywood for the 20s of the twentieth century, where the Cossacks together with the Indians were filmed in the first westerns and perfectly laid each other, which is not surprising if you remember the history of the Cossacks on the American continent.
Unlike English-speaking colonists, the Cossacks never considered the Indians of the second grade people, were friends with them, married Indian women.
It all started with Alaska, where the Cossacks-pioneers under the leadership of Seeds Dezhnev penetrated back in 1648. They committed a raid for the fur and returned home.
In 1741, the Russian administration was established on Alaska, and these land were announced by Russian possessions. So there was Russian America, and by the beginning of the XIX century, a significant part of the local population spoke in Russian and adopted Orthodoxy.
The inhabitants of the first stationary settlements founded in 1794 by the Siberian merchant Gregory Shelikov were Cossacks, but they did not bring their families there, but married Aleutans.
In 1812, in order to expand trade and supply Alaska, Fort Ross was founded in California. The initiator of this venture was Nikolai Rezanov – the very, from the musical "Juno and Avos".
Most of the Russian population of Fort Ross also made up the Cossacks, but there were few them. The number of all Russian inhabitants of this colony ranged from 50 to 100 people, they worked under the contract, which was seven years. Some of them married women from neighboring Indian tribes.
In 1841, the Russian colony in Fort Ross stopped existence: it was recognized as unprofitable and sold by the American John Satter. Cossacks went home, few remaining mixed with the local population.
From the first wave of Cossack migration on the West Coast of North America (1648-1841), there were no Cossack villages, nor traditions, but the Orthodox churches were preserved and converted to Orthodoxy and speaking in Russian Aborigines.
In the XIX century, the Cossack Emigration was spontaneous. Some number of Cossacks turned out to be among those who went to "conquer America" after the defeat of Napoleon’s army. We are talking about the lower ranks of the Russian army, which, as follows from the notes of the artillery officer A.M. Baranovich, disappeared without a trace in France after the completion of hostilities. Total "lost" 40,000 people, how many of them crossed the ocean, is unknown.
Drove and directly from Russia. By the middle of the XIX century, the idea of "run to America" became popular in certain circles, but they were solved for this units: according to official data, for 50 years, from 1821 to 1870, only 8083 people moved from Russia to the United States.
Apparently, the Cossacks from this small group of emigrants or their descendants and steel at the end of the XIX century participants of the show Buffalo Bill’s "Indians and Cossacks".
There is a legend that the Cossacks fought against slavery during the US Civil War. It looks quite believable simply because the Cossacks-emigrants settled in the northern states, but no intelligible data on the Cossack units or specific people, with the exception of the history of the Don Cossack, the retired Russian officer Ivan Turchaninov, cannot be detected.
But about Turchaninova knows quite a lot. After the Crimean War, he resigned and went through France and London went to the US. During the Civil War, Turchaninov fought in the army of Northerners, reached the title of Brigadier General. Among Yuzhan went the legends about the cruel Cossack, General Nugow.
Today, according to the Supreme Ataman of the Cossacks of South and North America, Sergey Razenko, in the USA and Canada there are 48 Cossack villages, in which about 8,000 Cossacks live. Almost all of them are the descendants of those who emigrated from Russia after the defeat of the White Movement or fought on the side of the fascist Germany during the Great Patriotic War.
It is these emigration waves formed a diaspora in America. In both cases, it was a massive outcome of refugees who were driving with families, the Cossack regalia and household items were carried, and on arrival in the US, the villages and Cossack organizations were founded, they were trying to preserve Cossack customs and life, create museums.