At sources

To the 50 anniversary of the museum of A. V. Suvorov

This year the Kobrin military and historical museum of Suvorov celebrates significant date - the semicentennial anniversary. As on a destiny whim I happened to be engaged not only the organization from a zero mark of the first at that time on the Brest region of the museum, but also to connect with it further life for long three decades, - it the event, naturally, stirred up a chain of memoirs which, it appears, can be of interest to readers in my consciousness.

Everything began in the first post-war year, extremely heavy for the country. I was on receipt handed a state piece of paper of the following contents: "Decision of executive committee of Kobrin regional council of deputies of workers, on July 30, 1946 N 520 Mr. Kobrin. About the organization of the Kobrin local history museum of Suvorov. The executive committee of regional council solved: 1. To approve as the director of the local history museum of Suvorov of t. Martynov Alexey Mikhaylovich since August 4, 1946 and to oblige him: a) to come into contact with the chief architect of area of t. Leonov regarding drawing up the project and the estimate on a construction of a pedestal and a bust to Suvorov, and also external design of the house of Suvorov. b) to recruit staff of the museum. c) to establish connection with the relevant organizations of Minsk, Leningrad and Moscow for the purpose of receiving exhibits for the museum. Chairman of executive committee of regional council Taklenok. Secretary of executive committee of regional council Pastushenko." (It is in passing pertinent to remind that during that time Kobrin consisted in the rank of the cities of regional submission).

Kobrin military and historical museum of A. V. Suvorov

Having studied rather fondly made decision, I literally was dumbfounded. Without exaggeration, the first feeling was it as if at all not able to float suddenly threw to the river abounding in water. None of the mighty of this world considered it necessary to hint me at the planned decision previously at least.

However, a similar arbitrariness concerning me was shown in fussing September, 1939. Then it is unknown from whose hint the commissioner Lobachyov adjusting with companions rudiments of civil management in Kobrin inconsiderately appointed me the chief of mail. And after release from this function the chairman of Temporary board T.F. Subbotin in the same way imposed me the organization of city library. To some extent such arbitrariness could find a justification at the reference to a partdistsiplina. However I never before in any party did not consist. Apparently, as the main reason the acute shortage Russian-speaking gramoteev among local population served.

Having comprehended contents of the decision, I assumed that there was a certain misunderstanding which it is necessary to find out and correct somewhat quicker. For this purpose at me the meeting with Taklenk took place. However all my attempts to convince him of my total incompetence in museum business did not lead to anything. According to Taklenk, all this is not so important, there would be a desire to work. In conclusion, however, encouraged: "You will not justify trust - we will remove when we consider it necessary".

A series of subsequent "appeals" at raykomovsky secretaries - Tsarenkova, Makushenko, Tsygankov ended with failure. As if sgovoryas, all of them did not begin even to press in talk, having waved away the fact that "not we appointed". So, there was no other exit left how to reconcile and obediently to hold up a neck under the hung collar.

Such turn of events forced me to look in a new way at the "real estate" which got to me in inheritance by which it passed before is indifferent. Direct acquaintance with the place of my further work made the depressing impression. In effect, from the house one framework escaped: the warped walls under a gontovy roof full of holes, inside - the brick longitudinal wall with an internal flue serving in old times as a prototype of a modern central heating. From a total disappearance the historical house was rescued by only one - direct proximity of the district executive committee house protected at night. The gaping door and window openings were carefully braided by a barbed wire in order to avoid transformation of a tumble-down house into the public bathroom.

As the unsightly oblong house which grew from an old age into the earth about which among kobrinets the opinion long since took roots that it "Suvorov's house", it is necessary to get acquainted with his extraordinary past fluently served as the prime cause of the lit-up syrbor.

To begin with the fact that this house appears on Kobrin's plan of 1797. In 1795 the empress Catherine II awarded the field marshal Suvorov with the huge estate "Key the Kobrin" in which there were over 8000 male serfs. Owing to the ambiguous formulation of the fundamental document its interpretation was allowed in such a way that the city also is a part of "Key". And in connection with a similar turn for city petty bourgeoises there was a real danger to become serfs. The long lawsuit which in final capital instance ended with a victory of citizens was tied. 340 state peasants were in addition transferred to Suvorov to Kustovichi, ruins of the ancient castle located on the island in the downtown, a certain economic barn over Mukhavts and a house in the city. To Povidimy, this house, neivestno when whom and for whom constructed in style of the shlyakhetsky farmstead house, characteristic of that era, meant.

After Suvorov's death in 1800 his son Arkady soon sold out villages of "Key". The city real estate shared their lot, constantly changing owners. According to the Polish sources, in the sixties the XIX Art. the house Romuald Traugutt, the retired lieutenant colonel of engineering troops of the Russian army, the participant of defense of Sevastopol, recently before that retired owned. Subsequently he became the leader of the Polish revolt of 1863-1864. In this regard in the twenties Suvorov St. was renamed into Traugutt St. Bore his name standing in Kobrin 83 payment orders of the Polish army.

The next stages of history of a century lodge are that. In the twenties in it took place povyatovy seymik (analog of the Russian district zemstvo). And after pereselennya a seymika to more respectable room the house was divided into two apartments intended to employees of a seymik. During the subsequent German occupation in its close rooms the Ukrainian elementary school dragged miserable existence. By the way to notice, the only school in extensive Kobrin "gebit", In July, 1944 in it horses of the German obozny part took place.

Further events were developed thus. When the guerrillas who came out of the woods knew that Suvorov's house is befouled by fascists (I will in passing note that the blasting group of guerrilla group of Suvorov operated on Kobrin district), for soul guerrillas organized a community work day for its cleaning. Exactly from now on in the people the rumor about fault of Germans that the historical lodge was brought to the state threatening to its existence widely went for a walk. However, it is necessary to recognize that over destruction of the house in the first postoccupational days both locals, and working remstroykontor, and the next military medical unit "worked" much.

Someone paid attention of the first to further sad prospects of the Suvorov house post-war Brest zavoblono Ivanova at her visit of Kobrin. Before Ivanova who was a partisan in Kobrin district was directly involved in a community work day on elimination of horse "heritage". Povidimoma, it did not leave her indifferent to future of a lodge. The correspondence sent by it to "Truth" conceived desirable consequences. Soon the multistage administrative car which finally made Martynov the organizer of the museum started moving.

After the initial terrible confusion which captured me it was necessary to take directly occasion by the forelock. Began with the fact that in the simple school notebook brought to the level of "The book of orders" of the museum the order N 1 on my taking office of the director appeared. The second notebook began to be called as "The book of the accounting of museum funds" of the newly appeared cultural institution existing meanwhile on paper.

By the way, several Russian coins of former reigns inherited from the father yes something from the "plane materials" found among a house dobrishk and suitable for future exposition became the first material exhibits. The very best first steps of the newborn museum were that.

Then establishing strong communication with the chief architect of area Pyotr Vasilyevich Leonov followed. If not his interest in development of the project of restoration of the house and further assistance in its implementation, hardly restoration works which performance was assigned to a local low-power remstroykontora would proceed without big failures. In the recovery period I had to carry out to some extent a role of the supplier extracting missing scarce materials. It is hardly worth saying that during that time everything was deficiency therefore, as they say, the mouth was full of efforts. I spent on building regularly 8 hours, regularly keeping Leonov informed of events.

Meanwhile the amusing chain of museum paradoxes continued to be developed regularly. Though it is difficult to imagine the most worthless director without own office and furthermore without elementary chair and a table, at me these attributes were absent within the next one and a half years. Besides, throughout a long row of months for the ridiculous reasons (you see the issue of states "was agreed" by Minsk with Moscow) the staff list providing besides the director, one research associate, the inspector of halls (it is a cleaner) yes the night watchman was not approved. However, the last position was abolished by bossy justification later: "From now on to rely on locks and locks". And without the approved staff list it was impossible to use the budget, and to the director - to get paid. It now similar mockery became an everyday occurrence, then was the most rare state of emergency appealing to heaven. At the same time, as if in a jeer, department of the museums of the ministry teased me, inviting to collective visits by art dealers of the republic of Moscow, strongly recommending to stock up with cash for possible acquisition of literature and exhibits...

Already 1947 began. The put management salary still soared in air, and live life demanded real bank notes for the support. Having reached despair and having remembered a golden rule "Who does not protect the rights, that is unworthy them", I directed "personally" addressed to the Minister of Culture M. A. Minkovich the detailed letter which is not differing in refinement of expressions. There was a strong confidence that this time my long-awaited exile from a management post is guaranteed. But also this time there was a misfire. Probably, the minister realized that only the person brought to a limit could make up the mind to a similar step. To Kobrin urgently there arrived the manager. finance department of the ministry Leontyev. Having understood on the ground, it charged to the manager of regional department of culture until final permission of a controversial issue to conclude with me the interim labor agreement. And it gave the chance to normally master budgetary appropriations, and a salary to me began to pay only since January.
The course of recovery work of special concern did not cause, and therefore it was necessary to think of future "stuffing" of museum "halls", i.e. its exposition in what I felt like the absolute layman. Before I happened to visit the few solid museums therefore there was an impression that the museum is in general something majestic, extraordinary, the original "temple of muses". What did not match our rather poor house in any way.

In the far childhood, I remember, mother brought together me in the Moscow Rumyantsevsky museum, it happened to get acquainted fluently in the subsequent with the museums of Warsaw and Gdansk. But it did not favor to comprehension of "museum kitchen" at all. Therefore it was necessary to look back at more relatives on scales of neighbors. Those were available in Pinsk and Slonim. Both museums were created in the twenties on the basis of privately owned collections by local enthusiasts.

Unfortunately, as the director of the pinsky museum Baran-forty, the former guerrilla, and slonimsky - Matveeva, the former principal, were so helpless beginners in museum business, as well as I. But both had reliable assistants, research associates Lozitsky and Stombrovsky who were engaged in all organizational and recovery work. From them I managed to gather the mass of practical data, so necessary for me, since notorious "elements of museology".

Soon I significantly was lucky in one question. Historical information which he suggested to make to me were necessary for Leonov for drawing up general plans of Brest and Kobrin. And in the central libraries of Moscow and Leningrad provided for collecting necessary materials to me monthly business trip to these cities. This opportunity allowed to start direct acquaintances to a number of the central museums. Personal communication with many research associates of the Leningrad art museum which for a long time became the main supplier of original exhibits, so necessary for our museum was an invaluable find. The matter is that after revolution the richest collections of the abolished museums of Guards regiments came to funds of the Art museum. After war the instruction to transfer part of exhibits to the provincial museums which were especially injured in the years of fascist occupation to what it was succeeded to fasten and newly appeared kobrinskiya followed.

For the purpose of replenishment of museum funds local materials I showed direct flows an imprudent initiative, having completely forgotten the precious rule: to write - write, and do not dare to understand - the administration knows better. Began with drawing up the detailed list of the various objects necessary for the museum which could be generous transferred to it by the population of the Brest region. About purchase there could not be also a speech. Then the large-format leaflet with the such address was gratuitously printed by thousand circulation in printing house of a local rayonka. Soon, being in Brest, I by naivety carried a solid pile of fresh leaflets in obkomovsky department of promotion and propaganda with a request to promote their distribution on area, than caused unfeigned horror of staff of department. As it appeared, of this sort direct "address to the people" was a sacred prerogative of only one Central Committee. Bedding set. Its violation was esteemed nearly by sacrilege, equivalent to original anti-Sovietism. And there was it during blossoming of Stalin orders. I had to spend the night in Brest, and only upon return I completely realized what heat the night alarm caused this incident in the editor of a rayonka of that time Nikolay Grigoryevich Nikiforov who precipitately dared to print a harmful leaflet which all circulation was subject to immediate burning in the presence of members of the special commission. Fortunately for Nikiforov and me, my text was previously vised by the second secretary of a district committee of party Makushenko. Higher thunders and lightnings for the allowed rashness finally fell upon it.

At the beginning of 1948 the acceptance report on the end of restoration works was officially issued thanks to what I from estate of bums felt the full-fledged director with the steady working chair. Meanwhile the order by the ministry finally determined a new profile of the museum: Kobrin military and historical museum of name A.V. Suvorova. The burdensome period of the compelled loneliness ended for me and became possible for the first time to recruit tiny staff of the museum.

The first research associate Nikolay Martynovich Vasilevsky, the person far from historical science was taken on as, but to what invaluable during this period in all other relations. It is unlikely at those most difficult opportunities without his practical sharpness in combination with clever fingers it would be succeeded to make out tolerably repeatedly changing expositions in the slightest degree. During that time the museums could only dream of involvement of expensive professional painters. And in our long-term "duet" my head was very successfully supplemented with his hands.

In post-war years reached a zenith a cult of Stalin who on historical parade told on November 7, 1941 worthy imitations the names of "our great ancestors". Among them Alexander Suvorov appeared. Therefore the instruction to begin an exposition with gallery of portraits of these commanders which for us was executed by the Brest artists arrived. The second department was devoted to life and A. V. Suvorov's activity, the third, final - to the events of Patriotic war of 1812 which are directly connected with Belarus. Our plans temporarily are farther did not stretch. And it is a pity. An opportunity without delay to get many valuable exhibits on the Great Patriotic War was missed.

Meanwhile it was succeeded to deliver from the Art museum the first party of original valuable exhibits which could not be used, alas, first owing to lack of cases and show-windows. The administration of all levels demanded one: it is obligatory to open the museum on the firstly of May. We had no other exit how to stake on any amateur work, i.e. use of disposed casual "plane material", that is illustrations with photos. By the way, as it is impossible more in due time the large-format album which just went on sale "A. V. Suvorov" turned up. Illustrations from it were pasted on a cardboard and not pomuzeyny were suspended on carnations. I remember: we had no piece of glass.

While registration hastily came to an end with a second or heel of rooms, with the first the unforeseen embarrassment turned out: at Suvorov's portrait the stretcher which was urgently remade in Brest burst. Vasilevsky brought the restored portrait with the pleasant message to the eve of the May Day: the regional management expressed desire to take part in opening of the museum and at the same time it had to is obligatory to be present at May Day celebrations at Brest. And therefore instructed to postpone our opening to May 9. Having received a week delay, I breathed sigh of relief. As it appeared, vainly. The next morning the police officer called me on a tribune to the first secretary of a district committee of party Tsarenkov to listen to categorical: "So, today we open the museum". All references to regional committee did not lead to anything. What was to do? Having taken in assistants to several acquaintances, I hurried in the museum. The fact that literally the day before from the Moscow Historical museum the mobile exhibition devoted to the 30 anniversary of October revolution appeared in time saved situation. Here its 1 4 stands we also placed in the empty first hall.

And there was the next problem: what, in effect, we will open? There was no ribbon beseeming for this purpose... Decided that as a substitute of a tape the available marble slab with an inscription will serve: "There lived A. V. Suvorov in 1797 and 1800". It was possible to open a board. But there was no scrap necessary for this red bunting. It was necessary to take a risky step, having directed one of volunteers assistants to the neighboring house with an assignment - come what may - to break a flag under my responsibility. Its panel served for a drapery of a board which was beaten hastily at an entrance.

Meanwhile along the street at the museum ranks of pilots were built and the thousand mass of the people gathered. The local management which was soon with haughty condescension approved the examined exposition. So opening of the museum which this day was visited by several thousands of people, and by the end of the year - over two tens of thousands took place. The administration could report safely on higher instances about the event which took place at it.

After the opening ceremony I had to become some kind of one-sided "shuttle" which for many years became constant visitor in the museums of Moscow and Leningrad. Especially significant assistance was the Art museum. Unfortunately, exhibits were released every time in strictly limited quantity, not over 30-40. Therefore immediately after delivery to the place of the next party it was necessary to address the following petition immediately. My task was significantly facilitated by the weighty trump which is available at my order - a name of Suvorov. Without it capital museum grandees would hardly begin to talk to the representative of provincial museum of local lore. The republican museum management soon decided to use this circumstance, addressing my next voyage by a reminder that I go behind the following pay as the representative not of only one Kobrin museum. As a result of two tens republican fellows could receive through us full-fledged exhibits. A little business trips by the fact that any trip out of borders of the republic demanded permission of the deputy minister of culture Uralova were complicated. However, the chief of regional management of culture Nicanor Pavlovich Strelchenok soon zasamovolnichat and began to write out "zamezhny" business trips independently, without thinking about the ministry.
And what difficulties had to be overcome in the Art museum when receiving exhibits! Chubby lists of the transferred things in which the name, a century and number of a box was laconically reported were provided to the applicant. The funds returned from evacuation were in the huge boxes located in casemates of Petrokrepost and established by ranks in tiers on 5 pieces. If the required subject was in the lower box, it was necessary to remove top, to open lower, to find the necessary accession number from tens and hundreds, then to lay everything on the right place, to drive in a box and to set up where it is necessary. And access to storage was strictly according to admissions, and it was forbidden to attract a third-party rabsila. It was necessary to sweat fairly to "fans" of exhibits, mutually helping out each other. Then the list of selected went to presidium of Academy of artillery sciences behind permission to transfer. Often it was late for long months. Receiving was followed by the next business trip accompanied with inevitable hassles. Pretty often paperwork and shipment dragged on for weeks, and even for a month. From time to time it was necessary to dodge and deceive, specifying mythical sculptures whereas actually there was a weapon in the consignment note.

The matter is that by the existing rules transportation on. of any kinds of arms surely had to be followed by the special escort. And that meant in the first years to resolve a lodging for the night question! It was almost impossible to get a job in hotel, it was necessary to rely on casual housing. Exhibits were so got for the museum!
And here, anniversary after opening as scandalous state of emergency burst was hardly executed. During my next long absence the suspicious white fungus, and prushchiya from sexual cracks was found. All efforts of Vasilevsky to struggle with him make-shifts did not yield results. When upon return I addressed expert people, something tremendous became clear: the fungus was especially harmful for wood "meruliusy lakrimansy", the watering fungus capable to destroy any wooden structure. The special commission made the decision: to urgently break and burn all floorboards (and them no more, no less - 200 sq.m), having in passing removed from under a floor the earth on depth to a half a meter. Thus, at the very beginning of a tourist season the very unpleasant embarrassment happened. After recent capital repairs it was necessary to close for indefinite time the museum on additional emergency repair that, naturally, aroused general bewilderment and indignation. The piquancy of situation was aggravated with the fact that in the following, 150-year anniversary from the date of Suvorov's death was coming 1950... There were also such supervigilant companions who were inclined to see in an event a certain evil intention, and even open diversion. And with it it was not necessary to joke. Actually everything was incomparable more simply. For repair the wood a lot of rolling in the wood after the German preparations was used. In due time not okorovanny, it already in the wood was infected with a fungus. Business with the fact that on old custom damp boards were laid on the damp earth, without produshin in the base was aggravated. Did not remember antiseptics - time was not it. The trouble did not keep itself waiting long.

Soon the first stage of emergency works managed to be finished safely, besides gratuitously. With assistance of amateur enthusiasts burned floor boards, dangerous to an environment, and following then one hundred cubic meters of the earth were thrown out from an underground by pupils of the next school. Incomparably more difficult the situation with allocation by the provided construction estimate hundreds of thousands of rubles was. Budgetary appropriations and construction funds were distributed long ago. It is always difficult to find additional reserves. Besides just during this time the local management was occupied with harvest works. Naturally, my nastyrlivy requests for the help were perceived without due attention.

However, a certain ray of hope when at us the editor of the regional newspaper who learned about strange closing of the museum visited flashed. Having attentively penetrated into a situation, it recommended to me to describe everything for the newspaper more in details that I also made, hoping for the help of the press. Really helped! Yes so that as a result of benevolent intervention of "Dawn" the local Thunderers grew furious on me for the addressing the printing word before ("You are glad that you are able to write. You remember, I never it will forgive you. You here the director, so far I resolve it", - the original words of the enraged Tsarenkov told confidentially) that in the next two years repeatedly tried to deal shortly with me. If it did not work well, then only thanks to protection of relevant authorities of Minsk and Brest.

Only late fall 1949 secondary repair painfully came to the end. Until now without shudder I cannot remember those, without exaggeration, dreadful and heroic weeks. Outside in the heat rainy November. Near Suvorov's lodge in huge coppers the antiseptic soup with which builders carefully cover crude floorboards, only slightly, before final drying and a coupler, beaten by nails incessantly bubbles. After that the wall plaster which is brought down higher than a meter is restored. For every possible acceleration of drying process the improvised iron barrels temporary barracks made red-hot were put to use. It is easy to imagine what dense-pregustoy charcoal fog at the same time arose. Often the interior of the house was not looked through from the end in the end! And that the most remarkable, everything saved up so museum dobrishko for a minute was not evacuated, and repeatedly moved by us from the room to the room. Besides, for fear of possible loss of valuable exhibits I with the only reliable assistant had to be on duty round the clock in turn for weeks.

And still to long-awaited Suvorov anniversary all difficulties remained behind. Besides was not only the improved exposition of five halls is completely restored, but it is even cast in Leningrad and the bronze copy of a bust of the commander of work sculptor Kyuferle is in due time brought to Kobrin. Its original is exhibited at the Leningrad museum of Suvorov. This bust regularly is on guard hitherto at an entrance to Suvorov's house.

The official opening ceremony, this time with the participation of the regional management repeated. Unfortunately, and again did not do without the next dirty trick to my address. The vindictive director of human destinies of regional scale Tsarenkov strictly forbade me to conduct the first tour. For this purpose the impromptu enlisted the principal who is previously not acquainted with the exhibited materials and therefore godlessly confusing events and dates.

Here end was so put to two first, fundamental to some extent, heads of history of our anniversary museum. And how many it similar was for the next decades...

 A. Martynov

Martynov, A. U of sources: to the 50 anniversary of the museum of A. V. Suvorov / A. Martynov//Kobrynsk_ vesn_k. – 1996. – 9, 12, 23, 30 kastrychn_k, 1, 6, 9 l_stapad.


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