History of Khmelnitskiy

It is the largest city (254.4 thousands inhabitants), the regional centre, which is located on the river coast Yuzhny Bug. Possibly, the first settlers in these places appeared after 1434 when these lands were grasped by Poland. They chose the place on the right coast of the river, surrounded with other parties of the river Ploskaya and bogs. The ditch was dug round the settlement, which together with the small river name formed an initial name of sentry alarm point - Ploskurov. Its first mention in documents dated back to 1493, which in XVIII century changed to Proskurov. Originally it was a small settlement with wooden fortress and sentry garrison, where lived about hundred people. In 1550 the Polish king Sigizmund II August presented Proskurov to prefect M.Vlodka, and in 1578 it acquired the right to carry out of two fairs and the weekly auctions. The settlement located nearby to Tatar "Black path" was repeatedly exposed to their attack, the most fatal occurred in 1512 and 1593. Destructive Emancipating war of the Ukrainian people, periodically flashing revolts and wearisome 27-year-old (1б72-1б99) Turkish occupation of these lands, after which in the future regional centre only some people was left, all this negatively affected Proskurov's development.

In the beginning of ХVIII century Proskurov became a private possession of Zamojsky princes whose efforts gradually turned to the important trading-craft centre of region which was famous for carpet manufacture. After the third division of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1795 these lands were the parts of Russian empire. The next repartition of the Ukrainian lands gave Proskurov the city status, the district centre of again created Podolsk province and good prospects of its development. 

An important role in its realization played the end of railway construction (1870) Zhmerinka - Proskurov - Volochisk, which considerably recovered an economic life of the city. By the end of XIX century the quantity of industrial enterprises in Proskurov had increased in ten times. In the beginning of First World War Podolia became a front zone and Proskurov suffererd not only severities, but also the deprivations of civil war, which followed them, as a result of fierce fights these lands were kept as a part of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic. Relatively later than city formation, a terrible fire of 1822 and presence in the thick of world and civil war events promoted formation of outstanding architectural face of Proskurov.

Among construction of city centre the private residences and office buildings of the end of XIX - beginning of XX centuries draw the attention, there the City Council, museum, theatre and other establishments take place now. More than ten private residences in memory of rough events of the Soviet power formation on Podolia, when the staffs of many military divisions lodged in Proskurov, now decorate the memorial boards, founded in 1967 in honour of the 50 anniversary of October revolution. The highest construction of that time is the building of a fire brigade which by analogy to other cities of the Western Ukraine could be a town hall.

Most widely in architectural shape of Khmelnitskiy, so the city began to be called in 1954, the Soviet stage of its development was presented. At that time majestic constructions of regional administration, music and drama theatre, philharmonic society, set of other buildings and monuments (to B.Khmelnitskiy, 1958; A.Makarenko, 1962; T.Shevchenko, 1964; N.Ostrovsky, 1964 and a number of military memorials), defined architectural aura of the city. For years of independence of Ukraine there were the new architectural impregnations capable in the course of time to shake the Soviet town-planning hegemony. The monument to T.Shevchenko's (1992, sculptors I. and V.Znoba, the architect V.Gromihin) is surprising-bulky, unique in Ukraine horse monument to B.Khmelnitskiy (1993, the sculptor V.Borisenko, architect N.Kopyl), unusually effective under the composite decision the monument to the soldiers who were lost in Afghanistan and other local wars. New buildings of banks bring the big variety in architectural silhouette of the city, underlining change of the social order in the country.
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