200th Anniversary of U.S.-Russia Diplomatic Relations (1807-2007) US Department of State
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Commemorating 200 Years of US-Russia Diplomatic Relations

This year, private and government organizations in the United States and Russia will mark two centuries of diplomatic relations with events that illustrate the depth and complexity of the relationship. Although the U.S. and Russian Governments may disagree on some policy issues, they cooperate on others; and Russians and Americans work together on a daily basis in a wide range of areas.

Throughout the year, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, the U.S. Consulates in Russia, and the State Department in Washington D.C. will be coordinating many events in the United States and Russia to highlight this important milestone. In 2008, the U.S. Embassy also will note the 75th anniversary of Spaso House as the residence of U.S. Ambassadors in Russia.

Highlights

Bicentennial Calendar provides an updated list of the many events underway in the Russian Federation and U.S. to commemorate 200 years of diplomatic relations.

"Closer Than We Think: A Traveling Exhibit in Russia" To illustrate the trajectory of history, "Closer Than We Think: 200 Years of Russia - U.S. Diplomatic Relations" will travel to U.S. Consulates and American Corners across Russia during 2007. This 12-panel exhibit will show what average people -- some famous, some not -- did to help shape relations between the American and Russian people, from our shared roots during the age of enlightenment to cooperation and competition in the arts, science, commerce, education, space and at times of war.

America and Russia Essay Contest On 200 Years of Relations: For high school students in Russia and the USA, this essay contest will challenge young people in foreign affairs. The essay contest will be conducted by the Embassy, in cooperation with the Massachusetts Historical Society and the Fulbright Office in Russia. Junior Achievement of Russia is also conducting its annual "Words" contest on "200 Years of Acquaintance."

Fulbright John Quincy Adams Fellowships. In 2007, the U.S. Embassy in Russia honored America's first Minister to Russia through the creation of five new John Quincy Adams Fulbright Fellowships for Russian graduate students and scholars in political science, history, international relations and related fields.

Establishing Formal Diplomatic Relations

The United States and Russia began efforts to establish formal diplomatic relations in 1807. The process continued over several years, hampered by slow communication lines and the domestic politics of the day. By 1809 official representatives were finally in place in both Moscow and Washington D.C. Since then, the United States has sent a long line of distinguished envoys to represent its interests in Russia, first in St. Petersburg (the first capital of Russia) and then in Moscow. These representatives -- including two future U.S. presidents, several future cabinet secretaries, members of Congress, and leaders in business -- played pivotal roles in the often tumultuous events that forged America's relationship with Russia.

The U.S. Embassy in Moscow invites you to be involved in commemorating this important milestone. If you have a personal story recalling an aspect of US-Russia relations over time, please email your essay (500 words maximum) to 200thanniversary@gmail.com. The U.S. Embassy in Moscow will publish it on this websites and reserves the right to edit for brevity, as needed.

The 200th Anniversary Commemoration in Russia

The U.S. Mission in Russia is celebrating 200 years of dynamic interaction between the United States and Russia by examining cooperation in eight key Bicentennial Partnership areas, including:

  • Education
  • Health
  • Business
  • Philanthropy
  • Space
  • Nuclear Cooperation
  • Rule of Law, and
  • Sports.

    Exchange in the arts and culture fields will be spotlighted in the Bicentennial Art and Culture series, while the Bicentennial Discussion Forums at Spaso House will provide a platform for innovative thought in global affairs, science, industry and other fields. The new exhibit Closer Than We Think" commemorates 200 Years of U.S. - Russia relations and will travel across Russia beginning March 2007. Look for this dynamic show at American Centers and Corners and at U.S. Consulates in St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, and Vladivostok.