Listvenichnoe is a village, a most known and visited place of the Irkutsk side of the Baikal. It appeared in the 17th century not far from the cape, where in abundance larches grew. A.P. Chekhov, having visited these places in June of 1890, in a letter to his relatives noted: "The coasts are high, steep, rocky, wooded; to the right and to the left capes are seen, they jut out into the sea like the Ayu-Dag or Feodosiyskiy Tokhtebel. Looks like the Crimea. The station Listvinichnaya is located close to water and looks like Yalta; if the buildings were white, it would have been a real Yalta. Only there are no buildings on the mountains, since the mountains are too vertical and it is impossible to build on them…". Today Listvyanka up-tempo loses it’s olden "landscape design", becoming the village of chaotic and often tasteless building up. Soon it is expected to become one of the Baikal centers of business, athletic and other types of tourism; and a lot of hotels, amusement and recreation facilities will be built here. Nobody knows how this will influence the village life, but it is clear that Listvyanka will remain for long years "the capital" for the Irkutsk part of the Baikal region on the part of transit and business tourists, arriving to all cities and villages of the Irkutsk Oblast.
In 1930 the Baikalsk Limnological Station, formed in 1928, was transferred from the village of Marituy and placed in Listvyanka; in 1961 the station got the name of the Baikalsk Limnological Institute, and names of many famous researchers of the Baikal are connected with this place. Now in the village the Russian Nikoliskaya Church is located, it was built, as a legend says, at the expense of the merchant K. Serebryakov, who once managed to survive in an inevitable ship wreck during a strong storm on the Baikal. He survived due to his frantic praying to Saint Nikolay. The church had been situated in another place before – in the village of Nikola. The village Nikola, built at a distance of three kilometers from the Angara headwaters, in which in it’s time the church was situated, came up in XVII century. It was from here that the sail along Baikal began since that was convenient for the Irkutsk merchants and manufacturers.
Mountain Cherskyi is situated nearby the village Listvennichnoe; and it was named so in honor of the most famous researcher of the Baikal – a Pole researcher I.D. Chersky. His name is immortalized in different places of the Baikal region: there is the mountain Cherskogo in the central part of the Baikalsky Range that is situated to the north of the Sacred Sea; there is also the peak Cherskogo, located in the southern part of the Baikal region close to Slyudyanka town.
Unique landscapes of the South-Western Pribaikalie are located in the area of Cape Kadilniy, here one can observe miscellaneous communities of steppes and woods and many attractive caves in lime mountains. Some of them are quite long and bulky, and in due course, probably, ancient people lived in them. P.A. Kropotkin describes his visit of one of such caves at this cape in 1865, where by all accounts at that time 7 gigantic skeletons were found.
The name of the Baikal village Bolshye Koti attracts attention if consider it from the point of view of two languages. In the Evenki interpretation the word koto means "knife". The possible Russian interpretation is connected with the notion koti – a sort of warm footwear applicable in cold damp weather in swamplands, usually worn by gold diggers, and not only by them. As J. Kennan pointed out in his book "Siberia and Exile", "the government, for reasons of economy in summer and autumn instead of boots give the prisoners low shoes – koti that are ordered contractor wholesale and made of the cheapest material". The village hence is popular with its old and modern realities.
First of all it is connected with the fact that in the valley of Rivers Bolshye and Small Koti, Big and Small Sennaya, on the territories nearby Listvyanka and the village of Nikoli, as well as on small depth of Baikal somewhere from the middle 19th century up to 60s of the 20th century official and nonofficial mining gild was conducted. For this dredges one used excavation of gold soil from the water by great buckets, aggregation of gold by trays, etc. In all the mentioned above places even now it is possible to see the dumps of stones, overgrown channels, cuts and great pits; not far away from the village at a small lake a wooden dredge "lives out" its days. As the conditions of gold mining were very hard, before the revolution this hard labor was basically done by convicts. Lots of them together with other people perished in these places.
There was an unwritten law amongst gold diggers: crumbled mines and underground moves that buried people under their vaults, were never to develop for the second time. When run against dead bodies, bound by land, they stopped their work and left the place of the mine working forever. It was considered a great sin to disturb the dead. In addition to the information about gold places of the region I can add the opinion of the Academician V.A. Obruchev, who as long ago as the end of the 19th century found gold sands in the pools of the Pribaikalsk Rivers Sarma, Ilikta, Kugan. But exploring of the deposits at that time turned out to be unbeneficial, and the question about their working out remained undetermined.
Secondly, it was Bolshye Koti in 1925 where one of two first research stations on the problems of Baikal was opened under Irkutsk University supervision (the second one was established in Marituya). There is another viewpoint according to which the station was opened by V.I. Dorogostayskiy in 1917. In this scientific monastery the famous Baikal scientist, professor M.M. Kozhov lived, worked and was buried, he founded the museum of the Baikal studies in the village (in 2010 it had its 125th anniversary). There is the Aquarium of the Institute of Biology of the ISU in the village as well.
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