The Russian economy developed rapidly in the 17th century. Then foreign trade was steadily going on at the port of Arkhangelsk . More than half of the foreign trade transactions took place in it. The city represented the "face" of the country before the Western European states. Arkhangelsk needed magnificent buildings with magnificent facades.
The guest yards of the northern city became not only a pleasant and convenient place for foreign and Russian merchants, but also served as a protective function. Nowadays they are recognized as unique monuments of Russian stone architecture dating back to the 17th century.
History of creation
In 1667, Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich issued a decree ordering the construction of an enormous stone building in Arkhangelsk on an area of almost 9 hectares. Drawings of the architectural complex were urban planners PG Marcelis and W. Scharf.
At that time, the city, built up of wood, was constantly blazing in fires. The fire destroyed a huge number of buildings and fortress walls, so they made a decision - to build from the stone Gostiny Dvory. Arkhangelsk, whose history is rich, was not easy to build a trade building, it erected a real fortress with two guest complexes: Russian and German.
A square with a huge square in the center formed the Russian and German Courtyard. The complex was equipped with elements of military-defensive importance. As a result, courtyards, connected by walls, towers and other structures, surrounded by ditches, have turned into a powerful stone city-fortress.
The erection of the grandiose fortress lasted 16 years (1668-1684). In 1693, Peter I arrived in Arkhangelsk. The city's courtyards, which he had seen for the first time, delighted him. Their decline will begin in the XVIII century, when foreign economic activity will be transferred to St. Petersburg. The Northern Trade Center, being unclaimed, will begin to crumble.
Restoration of the Gostiny Dvor
In 1770, after the recognition of the structure as an emergency, its immediate reconstruction began. Deteriorated areas of the Russian farmstead were dismantled, brick and lime slabs were sent for restoration. The German court and the stone city-fortress were almost completely removed. The ruins of the German farmstead lasted until the 20th century. At the beginning of the century they were completely dismantled.
In the seventies of the XVIII century the facade of the building was given a classical outline, typical for the architecture of that era. In 1788 a single-storeyed Exchange with a turret and a front facade rose above the new foundation. In the exchange hall, they arranged furniture, made to order, equipped with fireplaces. During the navigation season above the turret, the flag fluttered and the lantern burned.
Instead of the Stone City, warehouses with a height of 2 floors for wine and salt were built. A storage tower was added to the storage rooms. The project for their construction was designed by the architect M. Berezin. He planned to build a similar building to the North Tower. But meager funding and a shortage of building materials forced the architect to suspend construction. Only in 1809, with great difficulty, it was possible to erect the first floor of salt depots without a tower.
Having lost the original complex with powerful fortress walls, Arkhangelsk Gostiny Dvory received, but not in the original version. After the middle of the twentieth century, the city lost most of the Russian court. From it remained only the buildings on the west side, overlooking the embankment of the Northern Dvina.
Despite this, the architectural complex with the surviving structures: the Russian Gostiny Dvor, the tower on the north side, the stock exchange, the chauffeur and the salt depots, located in the city center next to the embankment, looked majestic.
Living rooms during the Great Patriotic War
Having lost military significance, the complex was reorganized by citizens for peaceful purposes. He was transferred to the city government, court, customs. Opened in its premises shops. In the Great Patriotic War, the cellars of salt depots were used as bomb shelters. Local residents sheltered them from air raids.
In addition, during the war in the buildings of the complex were allocated premises for the White Sea flotilla and communication center. The task of the military unit was to ensure communication with the Arctic and the Kara Sea.
Museum in the Gostiny Dvor
Since 1981, the historical monument is given possession by the city museum of local lore. The guest yards (Arkhangelsk), more precisely, their preserved parts, began to be restored on the sly. The restoration plan included the restoration of the Russian court, towers and buildings on the north side, salt depots. After the end of the restoration work in 2010, a simplified version of the majestic architectural ensemble was found in Arkhangelsk. Gostiny Dvor is now a cultural, scientific and educational center of the city.
In its halls there are interesting expositions, telling about the monuments of material and spiritual culture of the northern region. Several exhibitions are regularly exhibited in the museum: the cultural and historical heritage of Pomorie and the Russian northern monasteries. Two chambers are given under the exposition dedicated to M.V. Lomonosov. In one the exhibits about the small homeland of the brilliant scientist of Russia are collected, in the second the laboratory is created.
Activity of the museum of local lore
For many visitors open the doors of the Gostiny Dvor (Arkhangelsk). Exhibitions on different topics replace one another. On the outskirts of the architectural ensemble and its halls conduct excursions that attract the attention of adults and children. They provide information on the cultural and historical heritage of the region, conduct scientific and practical conferences.
Guests are invited to concerts of jazz and classical music. Organize fascinating quests, organize folklore festivals, theme nights, cadet balls, master classes and other events. The museum holds competitions. A special place is given to the contest-contest "Young talents". Its participants are talented masters, engaged in folk art crafts.