There are at least two historical roots of the mail-order bride industry that emerged in the 1800s in the American frontier: Asian workers in the frontier regions (although Asian workers were scattered throughout the world), and American men who had headed west across the United States to work out on the frontier.European American men found financial success in the migration West, but the one thing that was missing was the company of a wife.
52 percent of Russia’s workforce is made up of women, yet they often hold low positions of prominence in their home country and work jobs with less respect and lower wage (such as teaching or physician positions); Finding a foreign husband gives a woman a chance to leave her country and find better economic opportunities.
In the twentieth century, the trend was towards women living in developing countries seeking men in more developed nations.
In the twenty-first century, the trend is now based primarily on internet-based meeting places which do not per se qualify as mail-order bride services.
However, many consider the term "mail-order bride" derogatory and feel it demeans foreign women by comparing them to commodities for sale and by falsely implying that (unlike local women), they exercise no judgment over the men they meet and would marry anyone from a relatively wealthy country.
Few agencies still offer introductions and excursions, but pioneering marriage agency A Foreign Affair still conducts these services.