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The Kherson fortress was founded on the basis of the decree of Catherine the Great II, issued on June 18, 1778 on the territory of the former Aleksandrovsky Shantz, an outpost of the Cossacks, which existed from the 15th century as a line from the Ottoman Empire and defended Ukraine from Turkish raids.
Kherson fortress was built 7 years. Its goal was to defend the southern borders of the Russian Empire during the First Russian-Turkish War. The builders were the Cossacks and slaves, who were sent to build in the dry stony steppe using only their own strength, because there was not even cattle here. The first head of the construction of the fortress was Ibrahim Hannibal, later - Korsakov.
The fortress did not participate in military operations. Today, a part of the arsenal building, powder magazine, Ochakov Gate, which are directed to the south-west, remained from the former structures of the fortress and held the military direction from the west from the town of Ochakov. In the northeast were Moscow or St. Petersburg gates. Near these two gates and behind the powder cellar remained parts of the shafts.
The fortress well was preserved in its original form, its initial depth reached 80 meters! Through a dry climate and deep ground water. The church and the basement of the bell tower also remained, along with the pantheon also located on the territory of the fortress. The church was dedicated to Catherine II. Military men, sailors came to pray in it. All the decoration of the church is already present. The only thing left there is a gravestone of the grave of Potemkin inside the temple. This was a man with an interesting life, so was his death. He died on the way to Bessarabia and was buried in Kherson, but the count’s heart was taken to Bessarabia, and another part of the body was taken to St. Petersburg. Therefore, it turns out that he was buried in several places.
There are also remains of a moat, which the Lake Swan was deepened and made. There and fish caught, and swans swam. In Soviet times, the entire territory was turned into a park. But now only a pit has remained from the lake and the youth organizes various cultural events at this place: cinema, concerts.
Author: Irina Makukha
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