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Residence of the Chief of the Mining Works

Residence of the Chief of the Mining Works

Residence of the Chief of the Mining Works

This is the oldest wooden building in Petrozavodsk, a monument of history. Up to 1917 it used to be the residence of directors of Alexandrovsky Plant and managers of the Olonets mining district. It was built in the 1770s as a factory office. In 1786 it was reconstructed to become a residence for Charles Gascoigne.

The house represents a unique for Petrozavodsk mansion ensemble made in the style of Classicism. Around the 2-storeyed wooden house on a high stone socle there are 2-storeyed stone extensions holding services and small wings built to face the street with their shorter sides. Pediment of the main facade is decorated with a large semicircular window. White angular pilasters, horizontal string cornices and figured window cases supplement the decorations. Facade turned into the garden has a more soft architectural treatment (interesting there is a double-height bay window of the main hall) that makes the building look like a country house from the 'inner' side.

Traditional mansion park in the Dutch Garden style gradually passed into a landscape park arranged in the natural pine forest. On holidays the garden opened for outdoor celebrations of workers of Alexandrovsky Plant. Garden of the Chief of the Mining Works, having merged with the Governor's Garden, has become a basis for the future Pioneers' Park.

In October, 1917 the house was requisitioned by workers of the plant. The first in Karelia Workers' Club opened there. Due to functional changes, the building was re-planned repeatedly (the enfilade of rooms was substituted with the corridor system, additional partitions and doors were installed there).

At various times there were located the regional committee of RCP(b), a communist club with the auditorium that seated 120 and a library, and a children's musical school. By the XXI century the building was preserved almost in its original form: only the left wing was lost and a staircase was attached to the main facade having disturbed its symmetry.

In the house there lived outstanding mining engineers and metallurgists K. Gascoigne, Roman Armstrong, Alexander Fullon, Nikolai Butenev, Nikolai Felkner.

E. Itsikson
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Created: May 22, 2009. Last updated: September 14, 2009.
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