Alexander Andreyevitch Baranoff, governor of the Russian possessions in North America, born in 1746, died at sea, near the island of Java, April 28, 1819. Early in life he was engaged in commerce in western Siberia, but in 1790 established himself at Kadiak, and opened a trade with the natives. In 1796 he founded a commercial colony on Behring strait, and in 1799 took possession of the largest of the Sitka group of islands, now known by his name. He built a large factory at Sitka, and opened commercial relations with Canton, Manila, Boston, New York, California, and the Sandwich Islands, founded a colony near San Francisco, and was ennobled by the czar Alexander and made first governor of Russian America. He died while returning to Russia.
Alexander Andreyevitch Ivanoff, a Russian painter, born in St. Petersburg in 1801, died there, July 15, 1858. He studied in that city, and became known in 1832 by his " Christ and Magdalen," and subsequently by a colossal painting representing "Christ appearing before the People," executed in Rome, where he lived for about 20 years.
Alexander Bilfour, a Scottish author, born in the parish of Monikee, Forfarshire, March 1, 1767, died Sept. 18, 1829. He was apprenticed to a weaver, failed in business in London (1815), and eventually became a clerk of the Messrs. Blackwood in Edinburgh. Mr. Canning obtained for him a grant of £100 from the national treasury. He wrote "Campbell, or the Scottish Probationer" (1819); "The Foundling of Glenthorn, or the Smuggler's Cave" (1823); and "Highland Mary." He edited the poems of his friend Richard Gall, and contributed to the "Edinburgh Review." D. M. Moir published a posthumous selection from his writings under the title of "Weeds and Wild Flowers," with a biographical notice.
Alexander Blackwell, a Scottish physician, born in Aberdeen about the beginning of the 18th century, executed in Sweden, Aug. 9, 1748. He practised medicine in London, set up a printing establishment, and becoming bankrupt in 1734 was supported by the proceeds of the "Curious Herbal," which he published in 1737-9, illustrated by his wife. He subsequently published a work upon the improvement of barren and sterile lands and the drainage of marshes, which attracted the attention of the Swedish government. Having been summoned to Sweden, he was engaged for some time in putting his theories into practice, but was convicted of conspiring against the royal family, and beheaded.
Alexander Boreyko Chodzko, a Polish traveller, linguist, and poet, born at Krzywice, in Lithuania, July 11, 1804. He studied oriental languages at Wilna, went in 1829 to Persia, where he served as dragoman and consul, returned in 1841 to Europe, and has since resided mainly in France. As an author he is known by works in Polish, English, and French. His Polish poems, including translations from the Persian, appeared in Posen in 1833. His " Specimens of the Popular Poetry of Persia, as found in the Adventures and Improvisations of Kurroglou, the Bandit Minstrel of Northern Persia" (London, 1842), are valuable as spirited translations, and for an appendix containing fragments of the original songs in the Turkoman, Perso-Turkish, and Zendo-Persian languages. Among his other works are: Grammaire persane (Paris, 1852); Le dragoman turc (1855); Repertoiredu theatre persan (1856); and Chantspopulaires slaves (1865).