Ermak Travel Guide

 

Orenburg

Orenburg

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Description of Orenburg

Orenburg (from 1938 to 1957 - Chkalov) is a city in Russia. Orenburg is the administrative center of the Orenburg region, located near the border with Kazakhstan, on the Ural River. The latter is the natural border separating Europe from Asia, which, incidentally, is not true from a scientific point of view. It forms the municipality of the city of Orenburg with the status of the urban district. According to the data of 2012, about 579.3 thousand people live in Orenburg (28th place by population in Russia).

 

 

 

History of Orenburg

In 1734, the Russian Empire began expanding its control and influence in Asia starting from the construction of the fortress city called "Orenburg" on its eastern border (in Southern Ural). For this purpose, a settlement was founded here in 1735 - at the place where the Or and the Ural rivers cross.

The initial site was chosen for settlement during the expedition of I.K. Kirilov, who initiated developmental activities in the region. He argued that the city was necessary "...for opening up transit routes to Bukhara, Badakhshan, Bulk, and to India", making it possible to receive "wealth from there — gold, lapis lazuli, and garnet." After his death, a new administrator of the Orenburg expedition, Vasily Tatishchev, was appointed. He did not consider this place to be convenient for construction of the city, because it was constantly flooded by the spring high waters. This encouraged to launch in 1739 preparations for building a new town with the old name downstream the river Ural (Yaik) on the mountain Krasnaya (Red). The old settlement was named the Orsk fortress (now the city of Orsk).

On 6 August 1741, the new town was founded. However, its construction did not start. The location on the mountain Krasnaya — treeless, rocky and remote from the river — was also inappropriate for building the town. A new administrator of the Orenburg expedition, Ivan Neplyuyev, was appointed.

On 19 (30) April 1743, Orenburg was founded for a third time, on the compound that was once the Berd fortress (town of Berd), 70 versts (75 km; 46 mi) from the Krasnogorsk mountain area. In the summer of 1742, Neplyuev personally chose a new place surrounded by forests and crop fields, where the Yaik and the Sakmara rivers cross. Now it is the historical center of the city. The city built upon the mountain Krasnaya was named Krasnogorsk.

Orenburg, therefore, was successfully established by Ivan Neplyuyev in its present location approximately 250 kilometers (160 mi) west down the Ural from Orsk in 1743. This third Orenburg has functioned as an important military outpost on the border with the nomadic Kazakhs. It became the center of the Orenburg Cossacks.

Orenburg played a major role in Pugachev's Rebellion (1773–1774). At the time, it was the capital of a vast district and the seat of the governor. Yemelyan Pugachev besieged the city and its fortress from nearby Berda from October 1773 - March 26, 1774. The defense was organized by lieutenant-general Reinsdorp. General Golytsin defeated Pugachev at Berda, and later again at Kargala (north of Orenburg). Most of the city was left in ruins, and thousands of inhabitants had died in the siege.

Alexander Pushkin visited Orenburg in 1833 during a research trip for his books The History of Pugachev and his famous novel The Captain's Daughter. He met his friend Vladimir Dal here, who would later write the first serious dictionary of the Russian language.

Orenburg was the base for General Perovsky's expeditions against the Khanate of Khiva in the 1830s through 1850s. After the incorporation of Central Asia into the Russian Empire, Orenburg became a trading station and, since the completion of the Trans-Aral Railway, a prominent railway junction en route to the new Central Asian possessions and to Siberia.

Orenburg functioned as the capital of the Kirghiz Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic (in present-day Kazakhstan) within Russia from 1920–1925. When that republic was renamed Kazak Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in 1925, Orenburg joined Russia and Kyzylorda became the new capital. Almaty became the capital in 1929 after the construction of the Turkestan–Siberia Railway. Kazak Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was promoted to the union republic status as the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic Kazakh SSR in 1936. Orenburg remained in Russia.

From 1938 to 1957, the city bore the name Chkalov (Чка́лов) (after the prominent test pilot Valery Chkalov). The city's distance from the German invasion during World War II led many Soviet enterprises to flee there, helping to spur the city's economic growth.

 

 

 

 


 

Transportation

 

 

Hotels, motels and where to sleep

 

 

Restaurant, taverns and where to eat

 

 

Cultural (and not so cultural) events

 

 

Interesting information and useful tips