Albazinsky ostrog

The settlement of Albazino is situated on the bank of the Amur river. Here, there are ruins of the first Russian fortress in the Far East and the first fortified settlement on the Amur river—Albazinsky Ostrog.

One of the major archaeological landmarks of Amur Region is situated in the settlement of Albazino, on the left bank of the Amur river on the Russian–Chinese border.

Remnants of Albazinsky Ostrog are preserved to this day. The preserved parts are located on the cape surrounded by a small earthen wall on three sides

Archaeological excavations are underway in the territory of one of the first Russian settlements in the Far East. Discovered artefacts can be seen in the Albazino Museum of Local Lore. The Museum features a collection of baptismal crosses of the Albazinsky Ostrog defenders, household items, weapon systems. Visitors can also learn the exploration history of Amur Region and Albazinsky Ostrog in particular.

The 16th century was marked by an active reclamation of Eastern Siberia and the Far East. In 1650, after a battle, pioneer Cossacks led by Yerofey Khabarov conquered a small town of the Daurian Prince Albazy. As soon as the wintering was over, new masters went to explore new lands along the Amur river. But first, they burned down the town so that enemies couldn't get it.

Fifteen years later, in 1665, Cossacks led by Nikifor Chernigovskiy restored Albazinsky Ostrog. In a couple of years, Albazin Voivodeship was established here with a coat of arms of its own featuring an eagle holding a bow and an arrow in each of its claws.

Albazin grew rapidly: Cossacks, craftsmen and runaway peasants flocked to the free and prolific land. But life wasn't easy here: Ostrog was attacked by the Manchus.

In 1685, Ostrog was surrounded by the Chinese army counting several thousand soldiers. They were confronted by less than 500 Cossacks armoured with three cannons. But the Chinese cannon balls easily broke through the log walls. Russians retreated to Nerchinsk. But as soon as the enemies left, Russians returned to the destroyed site and built a new Ostrog.

Nevertheless, in 1686 Albazinsky Ostrog was sieged again. Ostrog got under control of the Qing dynasty and was burned down. After the Treaty of Nerchinsk was signed in 1689, Russians had to leave the place. The Chinese wouldn't settle here either. Desolation began.

The settlement was revived only 150 years later. During the new Russian reclamation of Amur Region in the 19th century, Cossack village of Albazin was founded here. Nowadays, it is the settlement of Albazino.

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