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Traveling of the Governor-general of Finland
around Finnish Karelia
in July 1910

For the first time after the conquest of Finland the higher representative of the Russian Empire visited the far, not widely known, might be said - forgotten, Karelian land...

The Governor-general1 left Gelsingfors2 in the evening of July 21st (the Old Style) accompanied by his wife and several men of the retinue. After short stop at Vyborg the train turned to the Karelian railway (going to Serdobol3 and Joensu4) and travelled to Jakima5, some 4 km from the Ladoga Lake. On the lake two ships of the Pilot Administration wating for the Governor-general...

The carriages took the guests to the lake. On the way they visited Jakima Lutheran church and Finnish public school...

From Jakima they went to Valaam. After 10 miles along the narrow bay, at the end of it lays Jakima, the steamers enters the lake. Near the Sorolansari6 Island there opened a majestic immense wideness of the Ladoga Lake. The day was sunny and calm, and the lake laid as a mirror. Far off could be seen the line of the Valaam Islands, which were about 35 km off...

...There came the steamers "Mareograf" and "Trall". The Governor-general with his wife and the retinue bid farewell to the father superior and community and ... boarded the "Mareograf". The latter, accompanied by "Trall" went from Valaam Archipelago into the lake, make it's way farther to the east - to the Manchisari7 Island...

The lake was still calm. About 6.30 PM the steamers cast anchors in about half a kilometer from the wharf of Peldozhi8 village... the shallow waters did not allow to come nearer to the Manchisari Island. The woodless island with the sparsely set houses it gives, especially in the evening light, rather sad impression of the almost lifeless, desolate place...

In the next day, June 24th at 9.30 AM the steamer came closer to the estuary of the Tulema River. The Governor-general with his wife and the retinue, escorted by the Governor Baron Troil and Director-Pilot boarded the motor boat that took all them to the wharf...

...After visiting the Lutheran church ... His Excellency visited the oldest Russian diocesan school in Salmis9...

Nearly six o'clock the Governor-general went to Manshila10 village by horses...

The road to Manshila goes by the wild forest. For all the 27 kilometers, separating this village from Tulema, there is no any settlement. The sternness of the landscape bounding the road from both sides was stressed by the traces of the forest fires, the big areas of the burnt coal...

At about 8 PM they came to Manshila... From here His Excellency went to the post on the frontier with Olonets Gubernia, where he hail the officers and soldiers of the frontier guard, lined up to meet him. On the way back the Governor-general visited the ... Finnish school ... At the school His Excellency had drawn his attention that there is no map of Russia in the school and the names on the other maps and posters are in Swedish, though the school is Finnish...

...Returnd to Tulema late, at 11 PM and boarded the steamer...

In the next day, June 25th, after the night spent on the ship near the Salmis shores, at 10 AM the Governor-general came to the Pitkaranta11 village...

...It should be noted that the welfare of the village is far from good. The big copper smeltry that used to engage all the inhabitants is now in ruins. Its owners built too big a plant, spent too much money and went broke. The English company that bought it found it more profitable to sell all the equipment ant let the rest to be demolished by the time. And now at the centre of the village on the vast territory there stay the empty desolate huge plant buildings, surrounded by the high walls of slag. The walls, brick by brick, are going to ruins and all this creates the morbid impression of the cemetery of the human work...

...His Excellency returned to the steamer to go further to Serdobol.

The ship came to Serdobol nearly 2.30 AM...

...After the visit to the Bishop's summer house in Hjumpilja12 the Governor-general went to the rail-way station and at 6 PM by the special train left go to Vilmanstrand13.

Gelsingfors, 1910

  1. Lieutenant-general Frans-Albert Alexandrivich Seyn (1862-1918), the Governor-general of the Autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland in 1909-1917
  2. Helsinki
  3. Sortavala
  4. Joensuu
  5. Jaakkima
  6. Sorolansaari
  7. Mantsinsaari
  8. Peltoinen
  9. Salmi
  10. Manssila
  11. Pitkäranta
  12. Hympölä
  13. Lappeenranta
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