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Vasyuvka

The town of  Vasyuvka over the Karachekrak River was named after General Guarantor Vasiliy Stepanovich Popov who founded there an estate in 1790. Owing to his persistence Popov obtained quick promotion at Caherine II’s court. During the rule of her successors – czars Paul I and Alexander I – he remained at court. His son, Pavel Popov, went down in history as a talented military commander. In spite of the fact that Nicholas I offered him the rank of field marshal, he left the capital to settle at an estate with his young wife – Georgian Princess Helen, granddaughter of Irakliy II. Pavel developed a stormy economic activity at the es­tate, which was cut short by his sudden death. The widow built a church over the grave of her husband.

The estate passed on to the grandson Vasiliy Popov named in honor of his grandfather. He decided to renew the estate, convert­ing it into “a paradise on Earth.” In 1889-1894, after the project of Alexander Ageenko, Vasiliy built a majestic palace surrounded with a defensive rampart similar to the walls of Moscow Kremlin. Gradually the estate turned into a pearl of architecture and art. According to contemporaries paintings by Titian, Goya, and Rem­brandt were on display in 15 specially equipped ethnographic rooms. The palace was surrounded with a large park with alleys, fountains, and copies of Greek sculptures. The estate, which cost 1.5 million rubles in silver, was obviously a competitor of the palace of Count Vorontsov in the Crimea. Due to successful man­agement there operated a distillery, cloth manufactory, electric power and weather stations. After 1917 the premises of the ran­sacked estate were occupied by an agricultural commune. In the 1930 5 attempts were made to take the palace apart for hutting. In 1989 there was started planned restoration work. The remains of t he hunting lodge and the corner tower have been preserved to our time. Historical and architectural memorial reserve “Popov’s Estate”.

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