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The Petrozavodsk cathedrals

To the 300th anniversary since Petrozavodsk foundation

The authors: Т.Sorokina, D. Gendelev
E. Matveeva took part in the preparation for publication

The book was published by joint efforts of National archive RK and the publishing house of the republic.
Petrozavodsk, 1999

Cathedral Square

The plan of the square
The plan of the modern Kirov's square. The places of the former cathedrals are marked: 1 -St. Peter and Paul's, 2 - of Resurrection, 3 - of the Holy Spitrit, 4 - "the tomb of the old man Faddey" (made by the architector N.Kuspak).

The city square, where now the Musical and Drama theaters and the monument to Kirov (a bolshevic, Lenin's comrade-in-arms) are located used to be called Cathedral Square. There were three cathedrals: St. Peter and Paul's, of Resurrection and of the Holy Spirit. In the middle of the square sat the monument to tsar Alexander II. The square is the historical center of Petrozavodsk.

In 1703 the construction of Petrovsky works was started. At the same time alongside the foundry a settlement appeared bearing the name of Petrovskaya Sloboda.

During the first two years two wooden churches had been built there: the summer church (the cold one or without heating) and the warm one (with heating) and a bell tower. The administrative buildings, the houses for nobility and local officials, dwelling houses for workers, a prison and Peter's palace ("two storied wooden house"), where Peter I stayed while visiting Petrovsky foundry, were built.

If we have a look at "Drawing of Petrovsky works buildings" (and the Drawing dates back to 1717-1720),we'll see that all the churches adjacent area was built up closely and still was being built over.

In 1777 Petrozavodsk was granted the privileges and rights of a city, and in 1784 - a principal town of the province. On July 1785 Katherine the Great approved of "The Plan of the city of Petrozavodsk", with all the edifices to be constructed on Cathedral Square.

According to the plan a new cathedral opposite the church of the Holy Spirit, the house for the bishop and a school were to be built.

The public school was the first building erected. It had been built for two years (1788-1790), and on April 21 classes began. It was a two storeyd building made of stone 64 m in length and 10,5 m in height.

To fulfil the plan a lot had to be done. The case is that the square had already been closely built and many buildings had to be torn down and a lot of residents had to be resettled.

It took time. Besides, in 1796 Petrozavodsk became an ordinary uyezd town again. That's why the construction of a new cathedral was postponed.

Nevertheless the square was slowly cleaned of shabby old buildings. And new buildings were built in accordance with the plan. Two schools - for boys and girls and an orphanage were constructed next to the former Public school. In the following years the buildings of Petrozavodsk women's school, technical vocational school and the nobility club were built.

In 1885 the monument to tsar Alexander II was unveiled on the square, and Cathedral Square was accomplished.

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Created: 31 July 2000. Last updated: 31 July 2000.
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