Sakhalin — Russias Penal Colony

This exposure is devoted to Sakhalin penal servitude and exile period (1869–1906) In 1869 Sakhalin was declared as place of servitude and exile and became one of the most dismal places in Russia. The colonization of the island lasted 40 years. Prison authorities had unlimited power both over exiles and few independent people.
On the plasma panel two ways are marked. These are the ways exiles have been got to Sakhalin: land way through Siberia and seaway from Odessa through Suez Canal and Indian Ocean. Model of «Niznii Novgorod» steamer and photos from its side help imagine the view of transportation to Sakhalin island. The symbols of that time are handcuffs and fetters, the lock and the key from the cell in one of the biggest prisons, Aleksandrovs prison. Original miners coal sleigh and hack give a notion about labour of Sakhalin exiles in coal mines. Also in this exposure sacking baby undershirt from prison hospital is showed. It was the first clothes of prisoners children.
Penal servitude is an important step in establishment of Sakhalin industrial sector including coal, oil, fish, timber industries and agriculture. It was this period when foundation of modern economy was laid. There are many materials connecting with natural resources development, formation of first industrial ventures and mode objects from the end of XIX century in the exposure. Everyday domestic objects include implements, home utensils and furniture.
Being the biggest penal servitude prison in Russia, Sakhalin also was political prison. It was a place, where members of Russian significant political parties and organizations, such as «Proletariat», «Narodnaya volya»- B. Pilsudskii, L. Sternberg, L. Volkenstein, I. Yuvachev, B.Ellinskii and others served a sentence. Working at schools, libraries, hospitals, working-shops and authority office, they practically made exiles life easier and enriched spiritual and cultural social life.
In 1890 famous Russian writer A. P. Chekhov visited Sakhalin. The result of that 3 month stay is «Ostrov Sakhalin» («Sakhalin island») book . It is kind of Sakhalin life encyclopaedia.

On the plasma panel two ways are marked. These are the ways exiles have been got to Sakhalin: land way through Siberia and seaway from Odessa through Suez Canal and Indian Ocean. Model of «Niznii Novgorod» steamer and photos from its side help imagine the view of transportation to Sakhalin island. The symbols of that time are handcuffs and fetters, the lock and the key from the cell in one of the biggest prisons, Aleksandrovs prison. Original miners coal sleigh and hack give a notion about labour of Sakhalin exiles in coal mines. Also in this exposure sacking baby undershirt from prison hospital is showed. It was the first clothes of prisoners children.
Penal servitude is an important step in establishment of Sakhalin industrial sector including coal, oil, fish, timber industries and agriculture. It was this period when foundation of modern economy was laid. There are many materials connecting with natural resources development, formation of first industrial ventures and mode objects from the end of XIX century in the exposure. Everyday domestic objects include implements, home utensils and furniture.
Being the biggest penal servitude prison in Russia, Sakhalin also was political prison. It was a place, where members of Russian significant political parties and organizations, such as «Proletariat», «Narodnaya volya»- B. Pilsudskii, L. Sternberg, L. Volkenstein, I. Yuvachev, B.Ellinskii and others served a sentence. Working at schools, libraries, hospitals, working-shops and authority office, they practically made exiles life easier and enriched spiritual and cultural social life.
In 1890 famous Russian writer A. P. Chekhov visited Sakhalin. The result of that 3 month stay is «Ostrov Sakhalin» («Sakhalin island») book . It is kind of Sakhalin life encyclopaedia.

Artifacts of the period: handcuffs and leg irons, lock and key from the Aleksandrovsk prisons (one of the largest in the island) punishment cell — are the symbols of the epoch. Coal miners sledge and a pick give an idea of the Sakhalin convicts labor in the coal mines.
Displayed also is a newborns baby shirt made of sackcloth. This was a first attire in the life of the convicts babies, which was issued in the prisons hospital.

Anyway, it was a time period when foundations of the modern industries of the island were laid. Penal servitude became an important stage in formation of the Sakhalins main industries such as: coal-mining, oil, fishery ones and local agriculture. Among exhibits are the materials on natural resources exploration and organization of the first industrial enterprises, together with a set of the late XIX centurys household items.
A set of household and domestic items, belonging to the islands dwellers at the turn of centuries, gives an idea of implements, household utensils and pieces of furniture used at the time.

Being the biggest penal servitude colony in Russia, Sakhalin was at the same time a place of political exile. Members of Russian major political parties and organizations, such as Proletariat" and Narodnaya volya" — B. Pilsudskii, L. Sternberg, L. Volkenstein, I. Yuvachev, B. Ellinskii and other revolutionaries served their time on the island. Working at schools, libraries, hospitals, workshops and penal colony administration offices, they rendered practical help to exiles and their family members to better their lot, and made a great contribution in the spiritual and cultural life of local society.

In 1890 famous Russian writer A. P. Chekhov visited Sakhalin. His 3 months stay on the island resulted in the books «From Siberia» and «Ostrov Sakhalin» (Sakhalin island") which were a real shock for the whole reading (intelligent) Russia.

Following strong public reaction the Government had to reform legislation regarding convicts and exiles. On April of 1906 the decree abolishing Sakhalin penal servitude system was issued and in 1908 the island was proclaimed an area for free colonization.

Main street. Post of Due

On the pier of Alexandrovsky post

Voevodskaya prison

Office of the «Sakhalin Coal Mining Company»

Pier and a coal mine of the «Sakhalin Coal Mining Company»

Coal mines pier of the «Sakhalin Coal Mining Company»

Due post. St. Nikolas the Wonderworker one-altar church. Was opened in 1856

Coal sheds at the «Sakhalin Coal Mining Company» coal mine

Handling produced coal at the «Sakhalin Coal Mining Company» coal mine

Zhonkier lighthouse. Built in 1886

Sonka — Golden Hand, famous female criminal (conwoman)

Convicts shackled to the wheelbarrows. Yard of the Voevodskaya prison

«Atlas» steamship. Shipwrecked in May, 1890

Nikolaevskaya street in Alexandrovsky post

House of Sakhalin islands military governor

Post-office and telegraph station building in Alexandrovsky post

Alexandrovsky Okrug (districts) police department and Aleksandrovskaya prison office

Pedestrian bridge across the Duika river in Alexandrovsky post

Central part of Rykovskoye village

Our Lady of Kazan church in Rykovskoye village. Was opened in 1888

Prison of Korsakovsky post

One of the streets in Korsakovsky post

Korsakovsky post

Police department of Korsakovsky Okrug (district)

Village of Tretya Pad

Maloye Takoye village

Bereznyaki village

Vladimirovka village

Listvenichnoye village

 

Exposition of the museum

Ground floor
Historical geology
The fauna of the Far Eastern seas
First floor
Plant and animal life
Showroom
Ancient cultures and indigenous peoples
In the depths of the ocean
Second floor
Postwar period. Modernity
The discovery and development of the islands
Before the war. World War II
Penal servitude






Kommunisticheskiy prospekt - 29
Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Russia, 693010
mail@sakhalinmuseum.ru
+7 (4242) 727555