I found the following page to be of interest because it shows the timeline for developing the USDA strain of Russian bees.
It shows the year, color code, and strain numbers for various stages of research. This is espacially useful if you plan to instrumentally inseminate (in-breed rather than open-mate) your queens.
Be sure to note the references on the page bottom, colors are not consistant throughout the timeline.
There is always more than one way to skin a cat, that's of course if you're into eating cats.