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It was October 31 1737, when Vasiliy Tatischev chose a place on the bank of the Volga River for a future fortress. Construction works began in 1738, and the same year authorities planned to move over 2200 Kalmyks there.

On 21st February 1739 the fortress was named Stavropol (future Togliatti), which in Greek meant Town of the Sacred Cross. Three years after there were more Russians than Kalmyks in the town, which was due to nomadic nature of the Kalmyks, who preferred outskirts of Stavropol.

In March 1744 Orenburg province was established, and Stavropol entered it. In December 1754 first population census revealed 5695 citizens. In 1768 members of first scientific expedition of Russian Academy of Sciences visited the town.

By the end of 18th century Stavropol became the largest town of Volgas left bank, thus beating its main competitor Samara, which was absorbed by Stavropol. In 1780 Stavropol was registered within Simbirsk province as a district town and acquired district court, district treasury and city administration.

The Emperor Alexander I visited the city twice: in September 1824 and in 1825, on his way back to Moscow from Orenburg. In 1833 Alexander Pushkin traveled near Stavropol, while collecting materials for his work on Pugachev. In 1842 Nikolay I ordered to move Kalmyks to Orenburg steppes, and vacant territories were inhabited by poor noblemen and former peasants from Ryazan, Smolensk and Tula provinces.

In 1846 new administration regulations resulted in two administration bodies, which reported directly to the governor. In 1859 only 2269 citizens remained in the town, which was due to migration outflow. In July 1870 eminent Russian artists Ilya Repin, Fedor Vasiliev and Evgeny Makarov lived and worked in Stavropol.

The beginning of the new century the city met with almost 7000 dwellers. Stavropol had one hospital, 7 educational institutions, 2 hotels, 6 plants and factories, 1 watermill and 4 windmills. In 1924 VTsIK of the USSR decided to make Stavropol a village with the same name. However, in 1946 Stavropol got back its city status. In the middle of the 20th century the city sheltered 12000 inhabitants.

In 1950 Soviet government decided to build hydroelectric complex on Volga, and Stavropol was flooded. In 1953-1955 the city moved to a new place, and only several buildings remind us now about old Stavropol. That was the second birth of the city. In 1957 hydroelectric power station named after V.I. Lenin was finished. In 1966 construction of the largest Russian car plant started, and during one year (October 1966 September 1967) Stavropol population doubled and reached 162 thousand people. This period is known as third birth of Stavropol, which was renamed Togliatti after the Italian communist in 1964.

Today Togliatti is a large industrial city with over half a million inhabitants. Life in the city is not boring: educational institutions, sport complexes, stadiums, theatres, natural history museum, cinemas, libraries, etc. Togliatti dwellers eagerly communicate with visitors form other cities and countries, which makes the city a friendly and enjoyable place to stay.

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  (Samara Region)

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