What could be Decembrist uprising? From history of “terrible prison
on the river Berezina“ the Belarusian city of Babruysk - recognized “capital“ of the Jewish diaspora. The first mention of the Jewish population of “town“ in historical documents belongs to 1583, and according to 1932 with the population 62 thousand people of Jews lived in the city 40 thousand.
The city on Berezina was a part of Russia only in 1793 as a result of the partition of Poland. Location of Babruysk was recognized as imperial generals strategic therefore when in Europe once again “began to smell fried“ Alexander I approved the plan of strengthening of the city which main point was a construction of fortress.
Future hero of Patriotic war of 1812 Barclay de Tolly reported about monarchical will the general - to the major Ignatyev, the commander of the division of store rooms billeted in Babruysk, exactly 200 years ago, on May 9, 1810. Of this date fortress on Berezina also conducts the history.
Fortress on an eminence in the place of a confluence with Berezina of Bobruyki was charged to be built to the publicist and the historian, the military engineer Theodor Narbut. Surprisingly, but the powerful defensive works were almost ready to the beginning of Patriotic war though completely construction works ended only in 1823.
Building for which materials were delivered from all Russia went in accelerated tempo. Both military engineers, and contractors - Jews slaved away. The main labor - serfs - was driven from villages of the Minsk, Mogilev and even Chernihiv provinces. Much of peasants were not fated to come back home. Fortifications rose, without exaggeration, - on bones. That was the price of accelerated tempo of that time.
War for which prepared in good time by the Russian tradition began suddenly. The general Ignatyev, without receiving instructions from above, declared himself the commandant of fortress and the Babruysk military governor. To approach of French in July, 1812 behind fortifications it was succeeded to concentrate ammunition for year of a siege, the food - for half a year.
There were not enough people. The fortress calculated on 25 - thousand garrison, was defended by only 8 thousand store rooms, but the active sorties they managed to hold 20 thousand French under walls. In the book “Heroes of Patriotic War“ published 80 years later after heroic defense, the author - the general A. I. Mikhaylovsky wrote: “Any fortress in Russia never was as useful as Babruysk, in 1812.
After war in walls of fortress lodged 9 - I am the infantry division well-known for that many future Decembrists served in it. Among others - S. I. Muravyev - the Apostle and A. P. Bestuzhev - Ryumin.
As there was a speech of Decembrists on Senate Square in 1825 - is described in all school textbooks, but it appears, events could develop also according to other scenario. The group of officers among whom there is Kuzmin, Troitsk Tizengauzen, Cowards and the Habit worked on “The Babruysk plan“.
As it was already mentioned - completely construction works in fortress were complete in 1823. Alexander I was going to arrive to review of troops about it to Babruysk. Members of secret society planned to lift revolt this day, to arrest the emperor, to hold it in fortress and to nominate the risen troops to the capital. Who knows what from this could turn out. The tsar in hostages behind unapproachable walls - strong argument. But plans so plans also remained.
And the fortress constructed as a stronghold in fight against enemies external, after December events was used by the authorities for fight against enemies internal. There supported the condemned Decembrists. In torture chambers and casemates slowly died, among others, and authors of “The Babruysk plan“ Tizengauzen, Pants, Troitsk … Most longer the lieutenant colonel A. Gvozdev who died in 1842 after 14 years of serf penal servitude held on.
In the environment of the Russian intellectuals the Babruysk fortress won ill fame. Being indignant with conditions of keeping in it, A. I. Herzen wrote: “Let Siberia, let anything, but only not this terrible prison on the river Berezina“.
By the end of the 19th century of the place of Decembrists the soldiers and sailors punished by “educational“ service in a disciplinary battalion borrowed. “Tradition“ was picked up German - the fascist aggressors who turned fortress into the extermination camp. As documents, by August, 1942, in hundred years after death of the lieutenant colonel Gvozdev testify, about 40 thousand people were destroyed here.
In the fifties the 20th century the Babruysk fortress was under authority of the Soviet military. As defensive works it was not of any value any more, and the commander 5 - y tank army the general Tretiak ordered to blow up fortress.
But the thick walls which are put up by hands of serfs on the earth which is plentifully irrigated by the own sweat and blood stood. Perhaps, the reason as project and construction works, but it is not excluded that among sappers to whom charged performance of “a fighting task“ there were people capable to glance slightly further a peak-cap peak.
Thank them for it.