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Posolsk is one of the first tragic places for Russians at the Baikal. The monastery built here is associated with the name of the Russian ambassador Yerofei Zabolotsky, who was sent to the Mongol khans and was killed by the Buryat together with his companions on the shore of the lake in 1650. The dismal events of those years left their archaeological sites. In 1997 in Kabansk museum I happened to see the remains of gravestones metal cross with an inscription:”Here lies the dust of the ambassador Yerofei Zabolotsky insidiously murdered by Buryats in 1650.” The Hodigitria Cathedral in Ulan-Ude has recently given two commemorative iron boards to the restored Posolsk Monastery; on one of them there is an inscription: “Here lies the body of the God's servant, Russian ambassador Yerofei Zabolotsky, who accompanied with the Mongol ambassadors went to Khan Setsen with peace proposals and was insidiously killed by Mongols”.

Posolsk surroundings, despite the tragic events, soon served to establish ties with the Mongols. Two years after the death of Y. Zabolotsky the sotnik-diplomat P. Beketov sent three service people that were good at the Mongolian, Buryat, Evenki languages to the Mongolian Khan (“bogda king”). They went along River Manturikha over Stone (The Khamar-Daban Range) and a few days later they came to the Mongols (most likely, they came to the steppe located in the contemporary Dzhidinsky and (or) Selenginsky regions of Buryatia). P. Beketov ordered his envoys to explain the local people that the Russian did not want war, and a large number of detachment was necessary because the "brotherly and Evenki people” could fight with the state serving people. In spite of the fact that they did not have high-level credentials with them, the service people sent by P. Beketov were received well by the Mongol people. It can be explained by the fact that the Mongolian higher-ups knew the opportunities and Siberian “appetites” of the "White Tsar” of Moscow. However, when the envoys asked the Mongolian Prince for permission to lay the Buryat and Evenki people, the nomads in his estate, under contribution “yasak”, the latter opposed to it saying that the Mongol had already let Russians have a considerable tribute from representatives of those tribes, who “live near Lake Baikal, in Barguzinsky stockade town, along the Upper and Lower Angara”.

The Russians’ crossing the Khamar-Daban gives a reason to reveal the essence of its geographical name. In Buryat and Mongolian the word Khamar means “a cape, cliff, watershed”. Daban means “a pass”. In general, this crossing was used by the Buryat and Mongol to get to the Baikal and back, and it was not accidental that the sotnik Beketov’s envoys went the same way, for it was the shortest one. As for the Posolsk area here the name of the monastery passed over to the village, then to the railway station built nearby, and to the bay called Posolsky Sor. Sors at Lake Baikal are shallow bays, where fine-mesh fish live: the pike, crucian, roach, perch, burbot, etc. The “noble” fish such as the Baikal omul, whitefish, and grayling avoid sors. There are different sors at the Baikal such as the bays adjacent to the villages Istomino and Istock, one of them is called Istocksky Sor or Cherkalov Sor; Proval Bay is also called sor by locals.

The Posolsk monastery has an interesting history. It was endowed as the Trinity-Selenginsky monastery in the 80s of the XVIIth century by the investor Gregory Oskolkov. Initially its constructions were made of wood, but the fire in 1769 destroyed the wooden churches – Znamenskaya and Transfiguration Churches, so in 1778 the cathedral called the Transfiguration Church of our Savior was built there. There was the Temple of the Virgin Sign on the ground floor; the first floor was the Transfiguration of the Lord Temple. The monastery played a historic role; it was a convenient place to send caravans and embassies to China. The famous Count Raguzinsky Sawa, who in 1727 in Kyakhta signed the Boundary Treaty with China, when visited the monastery, certified its privileges and rights, among which there was the spiritual guardianship of the churches of Troitskosavsk and Kyakhta. The monastery also took part in the economical activity of the Baikal region; it had extensive grain and fishing areas, and peasants working there. Its spiritual life was to carry out a missionary role; in the XIXth century it christened the Buryat and Evenki people, taught priests from local people in a missionary school, after that they became disseminators of Orthodoxy among their fellow tribesmen Among them were N. Garmayev, A. Norboev, R. Tsyrempilov, etc.

The Posolsk Sor was the first place at the Baikal where the only luminescent lighthouse was built at that time. It appeared in 1763 by Order № 11840 of the Siberian Governor after the wreck of many boats belonging to private owners that happened in 1759. The order included other purposes as well: “…about the building of a lighthouse at Lake Baikal at the narrow strait called Prorva; … about the construction of vessels for transportation of government and civil load and … about fund raising for the maintenance of the lighthouse and vessels from merchants going to Kyakhta” (350, p. 175). The lighthouse represented the construction made of logs in the form of a cone, 6 – 7 meter high with the ground covered up with earth where firewood was burnt. In the early twentieth century at Lake Baikal there were about 10 modernized lighthouses that were located in well-known and frequently visited places; they were called correspondingly: Big Belfry, Mare Head, Goryachinsky, Ushkany, etc. In 1900 an eponymous ice-breaker began to ply across the lake, and for its orientation two similar lighthouses were set up at the ports Baikal and Mysovaya. They were metallic structures with a diameter of about 10 meters and a height of 17 meters. The spiral staircase 15 meter high led out to the observation deck of each lighthouse. The lighthouse at Port Baikal is preserved, and it is considered to be the oldest building of its type. It is interesting to mention that these two twin lighthouses were connected with the third, a wooden one. It was built 30 km off the station of Mysovaya in the branch of the Khamar-Daban Range. Its light could be seen from the other shore of the lake. Sailing to Mysovaya vessels first oriented to its light and only then – to the coastal lighthouse. The wooden lighthouse ceased to operate during the Civil War and later on it was destroyed.

The fish hatchery located in the settlement Big River if one of the most important environmentally oriented objects of these places. This hatchery was the first one of such kind at Lake Baikal where since 1933 artificial breeding of the Baikal omul began. There are four populations of this fish in the Baikal that spawn in definite tributaries of the lake. Severobaikalsk omul population spawns in Rivers Upper Angara and Kichera; Selenginsk one spawns in River Selenga. In the rivers of Bay Chivyrkuy and in the small tributaries of the western and eastern coasts of Lake Baikal Chivyrkuy population spawns. The Posolsk omul population spawns in the tributaries of Posolsk Sor – Rivers Abramikha, Kultuchnaya, and the Big River. For the latter population is notable for its taste quality and size, a special fish hatchery was set up to increase its quantity. For many years the hatchery put from tens to hundreds of millions of omul eggs into the hatching shops. In particular, from 1933 till 1988 the smallest number of eggs was in 1934 (37. 3 million), while the largest – in 1984: 1296 million. In recent years the efficiency of Bolsherechensk hatchery, as well as of other similar enterprises at the Baikal has declined; we shall discuss the reasons of it a bit later.

At present on the banks of Posolsk Sor and farther on to the southwest along the Baikal coast there is a large number of camping sites, boarding houses, rest houses, etc. The warm water of the sor, the omul of sufficient size and special taste that is called posolsky, proximity of the taiga and berry picking – all this attracts a large number of tourists. The most remarkable place here is Kultushnaya, where you can find one of the most well-equipped tourist facilities.

Concluding the story of the localities situated in the delta of the Selenga, it should be emphasized that they are quite extensive: from Cape Oblom and Proval Bay in the north-east to Posolsky Sor in the south; it is more than 80 km. The forest-steppe tracts located in the delta and nearby stretch to the village of Selenginsk, and it is about 50 km from the Baikal shore the longest. Totally these lands occupy more than three thousand square kilometers. Geologically, under the majority of them there are friable deposits brought in the historical development of the lake by sediments of rivers and sediments of the lake. Research with the deepest boreholes in the 50 – 60s of the XXth century failed to establish the thickness of friable sediments. The deepest borehole next to the village of Istok that is 2857 meters long did not reach the bedrock. Geophysicists suppose that the thickness of the sediments in the Selenga delta reaches 5000 – 5500 meters. Local residents fear that this tract, located on friable sediments, can cause troubles like Bay Proval during earthquakes and the geography of the delta can change. It can be supposed that in those enormous strata of friable sediments there are huge gas bubbles that are compressed by the rocks of billions of tons weight. It is known that there is gas and gas-hydrates near the delta of the Selenga. The spades of human machinery being totally short-sighted will pierce those bubbles, and the consequences of such actions can be very tragic for the shores of Lake Baikal. 

See also

Literature

  1. A.D. Karnyshev "The Many Faces of Multilingual and Mysterious Baikal"© BSU Publishing House, 2011

Выходные данные материала:

Жанр материала: English | Автор(ы): Karnyshev A.D. | Источник(и): The Many Faces of Multilingual and Mysterious Baikal. Ulan-Ude. 2012 | Дата публикации оригинала (хрестоматии): 2011 | Дата последней редакции в Иркипедии: 30 марта 2015

Примечание: "Авторский коллектив" означает совокупность всех сотрудников и нештатных авторов Иркипедии, которые создавали статью и вносили в неё правки и дополнения по мере необходимости.

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Тематический указатель: Irkipedia English
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