Rezanov, Nikolai Petrovich (nyĭkəlĪˈ pētrôˈvîch ryĕzäˈnəf) [key], 1764–1807, Russian trader, an official of the Russian American Company. In 1803 he headed an expedition that aimed to go around the world, opening trade with foreign countries and expanding Russia's Pacific empire. Failing in most of his attempts, he finally sailed to Russian America, where he found (1805) the settlement at Sitka, Alaska, in desperate need of food. He sailed to California to obtain supplies, and reached (1806) what is today San Francisco. He succeeded in his mission partly because of a romantic attachment to Doña Concepción, daughter of the Spanish commandant, José Darío Argüello. He brought the supplies to Sitka but died while traveling across Russia during his return trip.
See O. Matthews, Glorious Misadventures (2013).