Samoyeds are way bigger, their coats are often thicker, in my experience they are friendlier, Eskies are often yappy. They are descended from working dogs in the Arctic, though most haven’t worked in a lot of title . The American Eskimo was originally called the German Spitz (the name was changed in WW1 due to anti-German sentiments), and it achieved great popularity as a circus dog. They could be taught to ride horses, walk on thin beams like tightropes and just mp through hoops, often the circus would sell puppies to children who had attended the show. They were originally very smart dogs, though that was bred out of many lines in favour of a superior coat, facial structure or size.
I grew up with an Eskie, he was a year older than I was and died a week after he turned 16. He was fiercely territorial and incredibly defensive of my family, and especially of my younger brother and I, despite weighing just over thirty pounds at his prime. The American Eskimo Dog has nothing to do with the Alaskan Natives, previously called Eskimos. These playful, smart and perky dogs actually have their roots in the German Spitz breeds. But around the time this breed was being developed in the US by German Immigrants, Germans were unpopular due to WWI, but due to US expansion into the North, so called Eskimos, (Alaskan Native People), were popular, so the German breeders named this dog breed the “American Eskimo Dog”, solely to drive sales.