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Reference on historical and cultural features of Kondopoga region

Kondopoga region occupies the central part of south Karelia, bordering on the north-westernmost tip of Onego lake. Its coast line there is quite indented, and the lake forms here three large picturesque gulfs: Kondopozhskaya, Lizhemskaya and Unitskaya. These are perfect places for employment by yachting, rowing tours, summer and winter fishing. There are also many various lakes and small rivers and in the "continental" part of the region. From the northwest to the southeast territory the regon is crossed by the large river of Suna, which used to be called "a mother of Karelian falls", which were three: Por Porog with 16.8 meters of water drop, Girvas (14.8) and Kivach (10.7). The two first falls now exist only in "dry models", and Kivach has only one half of its former power. Nevertheless, even now it attracts thousands of tourists who get acquainted and with nature of the reserve located around the falls. The reserve is engaged in ecological education, it offers ecological tourist trips. The manor of the reserve has an exhibition of "elite" samples of Karelian birch, and a museum of nature.

As for the other natural objects it is possible to mention the Karelian birch preserve at the southern end of Munozero lake, Girvas cut of the canyon of Suna river with traces of volcanic activity, Sundozersky paleontologic cut. These objects are already involved in the tourist turn. The area is easily accessible. It is crossed by Kola federal highway, railway and many republican and local roads.

Historical and Cultural Potential

The town of Kondopoga transformed from the settlement by the Decision of the All-Russia Central Executive Committee dated June 5, 1938 is an administrative centre of the region. The first record of Kondopoga as of the settlement appeared in 1495 in the cadasters of Obonezhsky administrative teritorial unit of the Novgorod state. Archeological findings and researches show, that Kondopoga is located on the place of ancient portage of the legendary way " from the Varangians to the Greeks ". Most actively the territory was populated in V-VII centuries. From Ladoda lakeside there moved Karelians, pressed by constant Swedish attacks, and there was an inflow of Slavic population from Novgorod. Before the XVIII century the Kondopoga area was in included in Kizhi pogost. As a result of administrative-territorial reforms of the VIII-I centuries at the turn of the XX century the Kondopoga volost was a part of Petrozavodsk district of Olonets province. Life activity of population of the area all these years mostly concerned agriculture, hunting and fishery. Serious transformations to economy of the region have started during the reforms carried out by Peter I. At the turn of the XVIII century have been constructed Konchezero ironworks and copper smeltery, iron-smelting furnace, the mine was developed to extract raw material. There have been constructed Kivoreka, Toporeka, Tivdia, and Lizhma ironworks. Great stocks of marcial waters possessing medical properties were discovered. To use it Peter I has issued the order to found a resort there. Peter I himself has been ther four times and received treatment at this resort. Later tsarina Katherine I received treatment there. In the second half of the XVIII century there started to develop the new branch of the mining industry - ornamental stone extraction. Near the villages of Tivdia there appear marble quarries, whence marble as finishing agent is delivered basically to furnish of buildings in Petersburg. In 1785 academician N.Ozeretskovsky studied Kondopoga region to make its geographical and economic description. In 1785 the Olonets governor Gavrila Derzhavin, having travelled from Petrozavodsk to Kem, has visited Kondopoga. In 1828 the Kondopoga volost was visited by the participant of the war of 1812, Alexander Pushkin's friend, poet Feodor Glinka.

In the prerevolutionary years the railway from St.-Petersburg to Murmansk laid through Kondopoga. On April 26, 1921 Vladimir Lenin has signed the Decision of the Soviet of Labour and Defense which has served the beginning of construction of paper-mill, cellulose factory, wood-working factory and hydroelectric power station which have become operational in 1929 in Kondopoga. A.V.Shotman, E.A.Giulling, M.I.Kalinin, V.Kuibyshev, S.M.Kirov have taken active part in construction of these objects.

During the Great Patriotic War the entire Kondopoga region was occupied by Finnish troops. Liberated in 1944 from the Finnish invader Kondopoga was a total ruin. Only a few brick buildings remained. Restoration of pulp-and-paper plant in 1947, announcing Kondopoga the All-Union high-powered Komsomol building site in 1959 has given a new impulse to development of economy, social sphere, and culture of the region. Timber industry facilities, agriculture, industry of building materials started to develop. By the end of XX century the town of Kondopoga became one of the largest industrial centers in the Republic of Karelia. In Kondopoga region there are 19 schools, 25 preschool establishments, 21 leisure establishment (Culture Palaces and clubs), 22 libraries, 2 musical, 1 art and 2 sports schools for children, local history museum. There are two swimming pools. Financed by Kondopoga, Inc., in the town of Kondopoga there opened the Arts Palace with an organ, and the Ice Palace with a skating rink. In 2006 after a long break the movie show in Oktyabr movie theatre has renewed.

In the town there traditionally passes the Song of Karelian Pines festival devoted to I.Levkin, organizer and the first conductor of Peter's national chorus which in 2006 celebrated its 70th anniversary.

In the region there are 93 monuments of history and culture, including 30 monuments of architecture, 24 monuments of history, and 39 monuments of archeology. Three monuments: the Assumption Church (1774) in Kondopoga, the Ascension Chapel in the village of Kolgostrov(the XVII century), St.Peter's and St.Paul's Church in the village of Lychnyi Ostrov (the XVIII century) possess the all-Russian status. All of them are masterpieces of northern wooden architecture.

Such monuments of industrial culture as Konchezero copper smeltery of Peter's time and the White mountain marble quarry, which used to deliver marble blocks of various colours for construction of St.Petersburg also represented considerable. The Marcial Waters spa resort, Konchezero copper smeltery, Kivatch waterfalls and the Assumption Church in the town of Kondopoga are included in a very popular bus route On the Vicinities of Petrozavodsk which attracts guests of the capital of the republic.

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Created: October 28, 2002. Last updated: January 14, 2009.
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