1865 Illarion Mikhailovich Pryanishnikov (1840-1894)
You may want a fur coat but fear an attack by a single-cell person with dye or paint. You may not feel comfortable with the idea of wearing fur unless of course the hide has been turned into gorgeous shoes, a fantasy item, or your favorite belt. You may have given the idea no thought at all.
Whether you are the fearful, the crazed, or the thoughtless, you live your good life because of the fur trade. From before the beginning of European settlement of North America it has been the great mover of men and shaper of American policy and national boundaries. Every American family has benefited from the fur trade, and worn furs frequently. To get over your shock and apoplexy, you should read Eric Jay Dolin, Fur, Fortune, And Empire: The Epic History Of The Fur Trade In America.
The dollars that opened North America to settlement and the displacement of Indians were all fur dollars. It was first beaver, then sea otter, and finally buffalo. To lesser extent you can add any fur-bearing animal native to North America. Deer fell into the hide rather than fur category so the author does not stoop to cover hides.
If the United States could reclaim its heritage and invade countries solely to make money at the lowest cost possible, we would again be the Great States of America. Manifest Destiny wore a fur coat and beaver hat. Our current foreign involvement in the Near East needs a fur coat, armour be damned. Fur coats as a symbol of American finesse, not a bad image. And when the cost/risk exceeds a generous return, sell and move on.
John Jacob Astor would have made a great president, except for the bit about being foreign-born. Charles Marlin