Severodvinsk is a city in the north of Arkhangelsk Oblast
Arkhangelsk Oblast
Arkhangelsk Oblast is a federal subject of Russia . It includes the Arctic archipelagos of Franz Josef Land and Novaya Zemlya, as well as the Solovetsky Islands in the White Sea....

, Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

, located in the delta
River delta
A delta is a landform that is formed at the mouth of a river where that river flows into an ocean, sea, estuary, lake, reservoir, flat arid area, or another river. Deltas are formed from the deposition of the sediment carried by the river as the flow leaves the mouth of the river...

 of the Northern Dvina River, 35 kilometres (21.7 mi) west of Arkhangelsk
Arkhangelsk , formerly known as Archangel in English, is a city and the administrative center of Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia. It lies on both banks of the Northern Dvina River near its exit into the White Sea in the north of European Russia. The city spreads for over along the banks of the river...

. Administratively, it is incorporated as a town of oblast significance
City of federal subject significance
City of federal subject significance is an umbrella term used to refer to a type of an administrative division of a federal subject of Russia which is equal in status to a district but is organized around a large city; occasionally with surrounding rural territories.According to the 1993...

 (one of the six in Arkhangelsk Oblast). Municipally, it is incorporated as Severodvinsk Urban Okrug. The city was founded as Sudostroy . Population was on the decline in recent years: .


The territories around the North Dvina were discovered at the start of the first millennium by Viking
The term Viking is customarily used to refer to the Norse explorers, warriors, merchants, and pirates who raided, traded, explored and settled in wide areas of Europe, Asia and the North Atlantic islands from the late 8th to the mid-11th century.These Norsemen used their famed longships to...

s. British and Norman ships came to these places for mining, fur and fishing before the 13th century, but later the climate became colder and access to the northern seas became closed.

The settlement on the site of modern Severodvinsk was first mentioned in 1419, when the Swedes sailed into the bay and burnt down the Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery
Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery
Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery is a Russian Orthodox monastery in Severodvinsk .This monastery is believed to have been founded by St. Euphemius, an Orthodox missionary in the Karelian lands. In 1419 the Swedes burnt down the Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery...

 that stood by the shore. This monastery is believed to have been founded by St. Euphemius, an Orthodox
Russian Orthodox Church
The Russian Orthodox Church or, alternatively, the Moscow Patriarchate The ROC is often said to be the largest of the Eastern Orthodox churches in the world; including all the autocephalous churches under its umbrella, its adherents number over 150 million worldwide—about half of the 300 million...

A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to do evangelism or ministries of service, such as education, literacy, social justice, health care and economic development. The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin...

 in Karelia
Karelia , the land of the Karelian peoples, is an area in Northern Europe of historical significance for Finland, Russia, and Sweden...

. The abbey stood in ruins until 1471, when two sons of Marfa Boretskaya
Marfa Boretskaya
Marfa Boretskaya, also known as Martha the Mayoress , was the wife of Isaac Boretsky, Novgorod's posadnik in 1438-1439 and again in 1453...

 died in a vicious storm; their bodies were recovered on the beach near the monastery twelve days later. At the urging of Boretskaya, the monastery was restored and her sons were buried there.

On August 24, 1553, a ship of Richard Chancellor
Richard Chancellor
Richard Chancellor was an English explorer and navigator; the first to penetrate to the White Sea and establish relations with Russia....

 reached the salt-mining settlement of Nyonoksa, which is still famous for its traditional wooden architecture. The British sailors visited the Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery, where they were surprised to find a community of "sailors in soutanes" and a pier large enough to accommodate several ships. The main church of this extraordinary establishment was dedicated to Saint Nicholas
Saint Nicholas
Saint Nicholas , also called Nikolaos of Myra, was a historic 4th-century saint and Greek Bishop of Myra . Because of the many miracles attributed to his intercession, he is also known as Nikolaos the Wonderworker...

, the holy patron
Patrón is a luxury brand of tequila produced in Mexico and sold in hand-blown, individually numbered bottles.Made entirely from Blue Agave "piñas" , Patrón comes in five varieties: Silver, Añejo, Reposado, Gran Patrón Platinum and Gran Patrón Burdeos. Patrón also sells a tequila-coffee blend known...

 of sailors; hence, the whole White Sea
White Sea
The White Sea is a southern inlet of the Barents Sea located on the northwest coast of Russia. It is surrounded by Karelia to the west, the Kola Peninsula to the north, and the Kanin Peninsula to the northeast. The whole of the White Sea is under Russian sovereignty and considered to be part of...

 became known in 16th-century English maps as "St. Nicholas Bay".

The Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery flourished after the establishment of the Muscovy Company
Muscovy Company
The Muscovy Company , was a trading company chartered in 1555. It was the first major chartered joint stock company, the precursor of the type of business that would soon flourish in England, and became closely associated with such famous names as Henry Hudson and William Baffin...

, as the bulk of their trade passed through the local harbour. In August 1618, the harbour was visited by John Tradescant the elder
John Tradescant the elder
John Tradescant the elder , father of John Tradescant the younger, was an English naturalist, gardener, collector and traveller, probably born in Suffolk, England...

, who conducted a survey of an island situated opposite the monastery. This island became known to the British as "Rose Island", because it was there that Tradescant found an exceedingly rare plant which he named "Rosa moscovita" and brought back to London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...


The surviving buildings of the monastery were constructed at the close of the Muscovite period. The five-domed cathedral of St. Nicholas was built in 1670-74, preceded by the Assumption church (1664–67), to which it is joined by a gallery. Several decades later, the walls and towers were built of timber; the best preserved of these towers was transported by the Soviets to Kolomenskoye
Kolomenskoye is a former royal estate situated several kilometers to the south-east of the city-centre of Moscow, Russia, on the ancient road leading to the town of Kolomna...

, Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

, where it still remains.

Severodvinsk is the second largest city in Arkhangelsk Oblast. Its main industry remains defense related — the construction and repair of submarine
A submarine is a watercraft capable of independent operation below the surface of the water. It differs from a submersible, which has more limited underwater capability...

s at the huge Northern Machinebuilding Enterprise-SEVMASH
JSC PO Sevmash is a shipbuilding company based in Severodvinsk, a port city on Russia's White Sea. The name Sevmash is an abbreviation of Severnoye Mashinostroitelnoye Predpriyatie , i.e. "Northern Machine-Building Enterprise". Sevmash is the largest shipbuilding enterprise in Russia and today the...

 (Северное Машиностроительное Предприятие-СЕВМАШ). The Soviet Union's first nuclear submarine Leninsky Komsomol
Soviet submarine K-3 Leninsky Komsomol
К-3 was a project 627 "Кит" submarine of the Soviet Navy's Northern Fleet, the first nuclear submarine of the Soviet Union. The vessel was prototyped in wood, with each of five segments scattered between five different locations about Leningrad, including the Astoria Hotel...

was built here in 1957 and at the beginning of the 1980s, the world's largest submarine, Typhoon class submarine
Typhoon class submarine
The Project 941 or Akula, Russian "Акула" class submarine is a type of nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine deployed by the Soviet Navy in the 1980s...

, was also built here, later recorded in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Modern city

The modern city of Severodvinsk was developed in the Soviet period. As it began to be built it was called Sudostroy . It received town status in 1938 and until 1957 was named Molotovsk , after Vyacheslav Molotov
Vyacheslav Molotov
Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov was a Soviet politician and diplomat, an Old Bolshevik and a leading figure in the Soviet government from the 1920s, when he rose to power as a protégé of Joseph Stalin, to 1957, when he was dismissed from the Presidium of the Central Committee by Nikita Khrushchev...

. On 12 September 1957 it was renamed Severodvinsk.

During World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, a significant portion of the materials delivered to Russia by the Arctic Convoys to Murmansk
Murmansk is a city and the administrative center of Murmansk Oblast, Russia. It serves as a seaport and is located in the extreme northwest part of Russia, on the Kola Bay, from the Barents Sea on the northern shore of the Kola Peninsula, not far from Russia's borders with Norway and Finland...

 and Arkhangelsk
Arkhangelsk , formerly known as Archangel in English, is a city and the administrative center of Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia. It lies on both banks of the Northern Dvina River near its exit into the White Sea in the north of European Russia. The city spreads for over along the banks of the river...

 were unloaded in Severodvinsk. For example, the Empire Elgar, a British heavy lift ship
Heavy lift ship
A heavy lift ship is a vessel designed to move very large loads that cannot be handled by normally equipped ships. They are of two types: semi-submerging capable of lifting another ship out of the water and transporting it; and vessels that augment unloading facilities at inadequately equipped...

 that arrived in Arkhangelsk with convoy PQ16 and subsequently spent eight weeks unloading ships from the ill-fated convoy PQ17.

A Russian naval base supports the sea trials of nuclear submarines from the major submarine construction (64.5817 N, 39.8307 E) and repair facilities located in the area. The 17th-century buildings of the Nikolo-Korelsky monastery were adapted and are still used for shipbuilding purposes.


From 1950 until 1990, high-tech industries generated demand for a considerable quantity of suitably qualified experts and workers which prompted growth in population. Since 1992, the population has declined due to economic crises and unemployment that has provoked significant migration from the city. ! Year !! 1939 !! 1948 !! 1959 !! 1962 !! 1967 !! 1970 !! 1973 !! 1976 !! 1979 !! 1982>
Inhabitants 21,000 32,900 78,700 97,000 121,000 144,700 160,000 177,000 197,200 214,000
Year 1986 1989 1992 1996 1998 2003 2005 2007 2008
Inhabitants 234,000 248,700 249,800 238,700 233,800 201,600 197,400 193,200 191,300


The main role of the city has been, and remains, the production and repair of the submarines and military ships. During the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

, the city prospered, but with the decline and break-up of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War the city has declined. High-tech enterprises by a narrow margin changed industry under new necessities. The city's large military enterprises have survived the economic crises of the 1990s and have adjusted to new economic conditions. Severodvinsk now has the largest shipbuilding yard in Russia for large ships (tankers, cargo ships).

Large and military factories

  • "SevMash
    JSC PO Sevmash is a shipbuilding company based in Severodvinsk, a port city on Russia's White Sea. The name Sevmash is an abbreviation of Severnoye Mashinostroitelnoye Predpriyatie , i.e. "Northern Machine-Building Enterprise". Sevmash is the largest shipbuilding enterprise in Russia and today the...

    or Northern Machine-building Enterprise
core line of business is the construction and repair of submarines and other naval ships, as well as civilian vessels and oil platform
Oil platform
An oil platform, also referred to as an offshore platform or, somewhat incorrectly, oil rig, is a lаrge structure with facilities to drill wells, to extract and process oil and natural gas, and to temporarily store product until it can be brought to shore for refining and marketing...

  • "Zvyozdochka"
Repair of submarines, military and civil ships, construction of oil platforms and faceting of diamonds.
  • "Severny Reyd"
Manufacture of marine equipment.
  • "Arktika"
Manufacture of automated equipment
  • "SevDorMash"
Manufacture of road-building equipment and snow-ploughs.


Severodvinsk is the terminal station of a railway line which splits of at Isakogorka station from the line connecting Moscow and Arkhangelsk.


In the city there are thirty-two schools, a school for handicapped children, school for orphans, legal school.

Higher education institutions

The city hosts branches of the following institutions:
  • Mikhail Lomonosov Pomor State University
  • St. Petersburg State Marine Technical University
  • International Institute of Management (Arkhangelsk)
  • Moscow Modern Humanitarian Academy
  • Northwest Academy of the State Service (St. Petersburg)


There are approximately twenty monuments and memorial complexes in the city, including:
  • a monument honoring the city founders on Shipbuilder Square (a 30-meter sculpture);
  • a monument to the renowned Russian scientist Mikhail Lomonosov
    Mikhail Lomonosov
    Mikhail Vasilyevich Lomonosov was a Russian polymath, scientist and writer, who made important contributions to literature, education, and science. Among his discoveries was the atmosphere of Venus. His spheres of science were natural science, chemistry, physics, mineralogy, history, art,...

    , who was born in the region. One of the city's central streets is named after him;
  • the city gate, on the road from Arkhangelsk
  • a monument to the home front workers of World War II.

Cultural heritage

15 objects in Severodvinsk are protected as cultural heritage monuments
In particular, the Nyonokotsky Pogost in the village of Nyonoksa is protected as an architecture monument on the federal level. This is one of the few survived triple wooden church ensembles, consisting of consist of two churches (a bigger, not heated, church used in the summer, a smaller, heated church used in the winter) and a bell-tower. Nyonoksa was also notable for salt production.

In addition, the wooden St. Nicholas Church, currently located on Yagry Island in the northern part of Severodvinsk, was relocated there in 1990s and was the first religious building open in the city. The church was built in the end of 19th century in the village of Solza about 20 kilometres (12.4 mi) of Severodvinsk.

City in culture

  • K-19: The Widowmaker
    K-19: The Widowmaker
    K-19: The Widowmaker is a movie released on July 19, 2002, about the first of many disasters that befell the Soviet submarine of the same name. The film was directed by Kathryn Bigelow...

  • Nuclear underwater epic, film of Discovery Channel
    Discovery Channel
    Discovery Channel is an American satellite and cable specialty channel , founded by John Hendricks and distributed by Discovery Communications. It is a publicly traded company run by CEO David Zaslav...

  • Documentary film of Alexandr Ipatov, "Severodvinsk, a bird's-eye view" (Russian "Северодвинск, вид с высоты птичьего полёта")
  • Seven Days (TV series), Season 1, Episode 13, "Last Breath"

Notable natives and residents

  • Marina Prusakova, widow of Lee Harvey Oswald
    Lee Harvey Oswald
    Lee Harvey Oswald was, according to four government investigations,These were investigations by: the Federal Bureau of Investigation , the Warren Commission , the House Select Committee on Assassinations , and the Dallas Police Department. the sniper who assassinated John F...

    , the gunman convicted of assassinating US President John F. Kennedy
    John F. Kennedy
    John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

     in 1963, was born in Molotovsk in 1941.

Twin towns/sister cities

Severodvinsk is twinned
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

 with: Portsmouth
Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Portsmouth is a city in Rockingham County, New Hampshire in the United States. It is the largest city but only the fourth-largest community in the county, with a population of 21,233 at the 2010 census...

, New Hampshire
New Hampshire
New Hampshire is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America. The state was named after the southern English county of Hampshire. It is bordered by Massachusetts to the south, Vermont to the west, Maine and the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Canadian...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

Bryansk is a city and the administrative center of Bryansk Oblast, Russia, located southwest of Moscow. Population: -History:The first written mention of Bryansk was in 1146, in the Hypatian Codex, as Debryansk...

, Bryansk Oblast
Bryansk Oblast
Bryansk Oblast is a federal subject of Russia . Its administrative center is the city of Bryansk. Population: 1,278,087 .-History:...

, Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

Mazyr, also Mozyr is a city in the Homiel Province of Belarus on the Pripyat River about 210 km east of Pinsk and 100 km northwest of Chernobyl and is located at approximately . The population is 111,770 . The total urban area including Kalinkavičy across the river has a population of...

, Belarus
Belarus , officially the Republic of Belarus, is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, bordered clockwise by Russia to the northeast, Ukraine to the south, Poland to the west, and Lithuania and Latvia to the northwest. Its capital is Minsk; other major cities include Brest, Grodno , Gomel ,...

* 1897 - 70.53% Ukrainians, 24.1% Russians, 2.6% Jewish, 2.67% others* 1926 - 80.7% Ukrainians, 11.8% Russians, 5.5% Jewish, 2% others* 1959 - 79% Ukrainians, 20% Russians, 1% others...

, Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

Tiraspol is the second largest city in Moldova and is the capital and administrative centre of the unrecognized Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic . The city is located on the eastern bank of the Dniester River...

, Transnistria
Transnistria is a breakaway territory located mostly on a strip of land between the Dniester River and the eastern Moldovan border to Ukraine...


External links

History of the Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery Official website of city. Unofficial website of city. Photos, information, forum
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