An Account of Two Voyages to America by the Naval Officers Khvostov and Davydov

Description

This two-part work is an account of the travels across Siberia and Russian America (present-day Alaska) in the early 19th century by Gavrill Davydov and Nikolai Khvostov, two officers of the Imperial Russian Navy who were working for the Russian-American Company. The two men were friends who made two voyages to Russian America just after finishing the naval cadet corps. They took the first trip in 1802–03 and the second in 1805–6. Dvukratnoe puteshestvie v Ameriku morskikh ofitserov Khvostova i Davydova (An account of two voyages to America by the naval officers Khvostov and Davydov) is an account of both voyages, written by Davydov. Part One covers the first voyage, which took the men across Siberia, from Tomsk to Tyumen’, Irkutsk, Yakutsk, Kamchatka, the Kurile Islands and Kodiak Island, which is today part of Alaska. They then sailed back to Okhotsk, and again traveled overland across Siberia to Saint Petersburg, where they arrived in February 1804. Part Two of the work documents the second voyage. After again traveling by land across Siberia, the men reached Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy on the Kamchatka Peninsula, where Davydov met the famous tsarist official Nikolai Rezanov. Davydov then traveled by ship with Rezanov to Alaska and California. It was on this famous diplomatic mission to California that Rezanov sought to extend the Russian colonial presence south. He ultimately agreed with the Spanish commandant at the Presidio in San Francisco on the establishment of a Russian outpost at Fort Ross. In addition to an account of the trip to California, Part Two includes descriptions of the Aleutian Islands, the Pribilof Islands, Kodiak, the Kenai Peninsula, and New Archangel (Sitka). Davydov was a careful observer of both natural and cultural life who took ethnographic notations about the native peoples, made records of flora, fauna, and climatic conditions and commented on the activities of the Russian-American Company. He also compiled a Russian-Tlingit dictionary from Sitka, as well as a Russian-Kenaitsy dictionary (from natives in the Kenai region of Alaska), both of which are included at the end of Part Two of this account.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Marine Printing House, St. Petersburg

Language

Title in Original Language

Двукратное путешествiе въ Америку морскихъ офицеровъ Хвостова и Давыдова. Писанное симъ послѣднимъ

Type of Item

Physical Description

2 volumes ; 22 centimeters

Last updated: June 9, 2017