Rasmuson Library Historical Translation Series, vol. XIV
Authors Moller and Lind examine the family life of explorer Vitus Bering through his personal letters and those of his wife, Anna Christina. Bering led two historic expeditions to the Russian Far East and Alaska under the patronage of Tsar Peter the Great. His wife Anna Christina, youngest son Anton and little Anoushka accompanied him to Okhotsk. In a matter of a few days in February 1740, husband and wife and young Anton wrote sixteen letters to friends and family in Vyborg and Reval (present-day Tallin, capital of Estonia) and even to high-ranking members of the Imperial Court in St. Petersburg. These letters, written shortly before Bering left on his last voyage, which took him to Alaska, offer intimate glimpses of family relationships and the concerns of daily life, as well as insight into eighteenth-century mores.
Each letter is translated with the originals reproduced on the facing page. Also included are several lists of items brought by Anna Christina back to Moscow in 1742, after the death of her husband. These inventories tell us about what items were considered valuable, as well as about the sort of trade goods were available to early settlers in the Russian Far East.
Vitus Bering's native Denmark has honoured the book in the following way:
The translation and publication was sponsored by The Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik Foundation; King Christian X Foundation, Royal Danish Geographical Society (first time ever they have sponsored something they have not published themselves); Danish Arts Foundation; Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Denmark and the Carlsberg Foundation.