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Memorial-Museum "Salute, Victory!" in Orenburg
October 2, 2012 17:22

(Photo credit: Anna Dorozhkina 2012)

 If you ask the residents of Orenburg or tourists who have visited this city about the most emotionally memorable and impressive place there, they will probably answer that this is a large green park with the area of 200 hectares, dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic war. 

If St. Petersburg is «a window to Europe», then Orenburg may be called «a window to Asia». It was founded in 1743, and its name is a derivation of the German “Ohren” - “ears” and “Burg” - “fortress”. The idea was that the fortress should have “listened” to everything happening in Asia, and at the same time Orenburg should have served as an economic centre of trading with the Eastern nations. That’s why the city was built for military and business purposes: there were barracks, artillery depots, powder-magazines, military institutions, hotels, exchange and customs.

Many famous Russian people liked Orenburg and visited it. The first cosmonaut Yury Gagarin studied there and met his wife. And as Orenburg played a major role in the Pugachev rebellion (1773–1774), Russian writer Alexander Pushkin visited Orenburg in 1833 to make a research for his books “The History of Pugachev” and his famous novel “The Captain's Daughter”. He met his friend Vladimir Dal here who would later write the first serious dictionary of the Russian language. Today, there are still a lot of buildings in the streets of Orenburg where these famous people lived or worked. Some of the houses became museums, but nothing was destroyed. City's distance from the German invasion during World War II made it one of the biggest centres of the weapons production and an important supplier of agricultural products to the battlefront.

In order to commemorate the heroism of Orenburg citizens, many employees of various enterprises and organizations, as well as the ordinary people took active part in fundraising for the construction of the memorial “Salute, Victory!”. It is an open air exhibition complex in Kirov Street that was constructed in the honour of the 60th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic war.
Entering the park we face the jet on which the first cosmonaut Yury Gagarin flew, when he was the cadet of Orenburg flight school. By the way, a small building where Gagarin lived with his wife in a shared apartment is situated in the opposite street.

The central path then leads the visitors to the “Monument to the Fallen for the Soviet Native land” during the days of Civil and the Great Patriotic wars. Here is a high Stella with the eternal flame.

Some exhibits are dedicated to children and women who worked hard cultivating grains and providing bread to the front.

Orenburg region is rich in oil and metal resources, so medical and sanitarian trains, and oil proceeding machineries had also been constructed here during the war. 


Undoubtedly, the most impressive are the weapons that were produced in the period of World War II and in the post-war period. These are Degtyarev’s antitank rifle, MiG-23UB, Simonov’s antitank rifle, Su-17, Tanks T-34 and T-54, 3M8 missile system, BM-13 Katyusha, ballistic missiles, different artillery, cannons, mortars, etc.

Intercontinental ballistic missile

Degtyarev’s antitank rifle



This park has a homely and beautiful public garden where children enjoy playing and the elderly people are taking a walk. For a museum-reserve, the park has a unique design. But the samples of military weapons never stop reminding of the heroism of people who died during World War II and sacrificed their lives.

More than 25 thousand people attend this memorial-museum annually. Every year on the 9th of May flowers are brought to the eternal flame in honour of the memory to all soldiers who protected and fought for Russia.




the Eternal Fire

  All photos are taken by the author

Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Orenburg Russian weapon Memorial-museum   

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