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As a result of this imbalance, a new system of "picture brides" developed in predominantly male settlements.
Asian men also worked through mail-order agencies to find wives as they worked overseas in the 1800s.
An international marriage agency (also called an international introduction agency or international marriage broker) is a business that endeavors to introduce men and women of different countries for the purpose of marriage, dating, or correspondence.
Many of these marriage agencies are based near women in developing countries (such as Ukraine, Russia, Colombia, Brazil, China, Thailand, and the Philippines).
Few agencies still offer introductions and excursions, but pioneering marriage agency A Foreign Affair still conducts these services.
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.
Women in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and other Eastern European countries are common mail-order bride candidates.