Krasnodar, 14 January. Over five kilometres of peculiar atmosphere and priceless history – Armenian landlords that contributed to the architectural construction of Krasnodar’s thoroughfare.
Pushkin Library is one of about a hundred buildings that used to be owned by the Armenian diaspora back in the 19th and 20th centuries. T
he Library has a romantic history that resembles a quotation from a didactic folk fairy-tale. Newspapers of the time wrote that when going to Paris, Merchant Cherachev promised to bring jewellery to his wife, but she said that he would rather build a college for that money. If that was true, the wife’s desire came true in 1916.
The college served the ground for popular readings, the stage of amateur theatrical performances, and even the venue of sessions of the Yekaterinodar City Duma. Later it lodged the local Armenian school that worked until the beginning of the Great Patriotic War.
Another stately edifice, modestly hidden behind the crowns of tall trees near the building of the Philharmonic Society, was built in 1911 as the House of the Armenian Charity Association. It was erected for active work aimed at welfare support and defence, and to strengthen peace, friendship and accord between peoples living in the Caucasus. The spirit of competition and rivalry has been characteristic of entrepreneurs of all times. Thus, when Merchant Polikarp Gubkin open his Grand Hotel at the intersection of Gimnazicheskaya and Krasnoarmeiskaya Streets, his direct rivals, the Bogarsukov Brothers, decided to ‘play a trump card.’ Within a year, Karp and Khristofor Bogarsukovs erected so beautiful and peculiar two-storey mansion-house in the same street that it immediately overshadowed the neighbouring Grand Hotel and became a favourite spot for the very best-off people of the time. The Bogarsukovs’ Mansion played host to charity concerts and Christmas parties; it had a household theatre and held sessions of the Kuban Board of Prison Trustees chaired by Khristofor Bogarsukov. From August 1918, it accommodated the Headquarters’ Office of General Denikin’s Voluntary Army. Ultimately, in the early 1960s the building was handed over to the Krasnodar State Historical and Archaeological Reserve Museum.
The adjoining building of the Central Hotel was also owned by the Bogarsukovs. It was the edifice where the banner of the Red Army was hoisted in 1943 to signify the liberation of the city from the Nazi occupation.
Before the revolutions, Major General Ivan (Ovanes) Nazarov lived in the house No. 19 at Krasnaya Street. His father had joined the Black Sea Cossack Host but then he decided not to continue his military career, whilst his son Ovanes proved to be a brave warrior. Now the Nazarovs’ House lodges the Southern Interregional Administration of the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources.
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