Sovetskaya Gavan
Sovetskaya Gavan is a town in Khabarovsk Krai
Khabarovsk Krai
Khabarovsk Krai is a federal subject of Russia , located in the Russian Far East. It lies mostly in the basin of the lower Amur River, but also occupies a vast mountainous area along the coastline of the Sea of Okhotsk, an arm of the Pacific Ocean. The administrative center of the krai is the...

, 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...

, and a port on the Strait of Tartary
Strait of Tartary
Strait of Tartary is a strait in the Pacific Ocean dividing the Russian island of Sakhalin from mainland Asia , connecting the Sea of Okhotsk on the north with...

 which connects the Sea of Okhotsk on the north with the Sea of Japan on the south. Population: 29,100 (2008 est.); The name of the town is often informally abbreviated to "Sovgavan".


The bay on which Sovetskaya Gavan is located was discovered on May 23, 1853 by Lt. Nikolay Konstantinovich Boshnyak in Russian-American Company
Russian-American Company
The Russian-American Company was a state-sponsored chartered company formed largely on the basis of the so-called Shelekhov-Golikov Company of Grigory Shelekhov and Ivan Larionovich Golikov The Russian-American Company (officially: Under His Imperial Majesty's Highest Protection (patronage)...

 ship "Nikolay", and named Hadji Bay. On August 4, 1853,
Capt. Gennady Nevelskoy
Gennady Nevelskoy
Gennady Ivanovich Nevelskoy was a Russian navigator.In 1848 Nevelskoy led the expedition in the Russian Far East, exploring the area of the Sakhalin and the outlet of the Amur River. He proved that the Strait of Tartary was not a gulf, but indeed a strait, connected to Amur's estuary by a narrow...

 founded a military post named after Admiral Grand Duke Constantine, and renamed the bay to Imperatorskaya Gavan ('Emperor's Harbour'), after the then reigning emperor
Nicholas I
Nicholas I of Russia
Nicholas I , was the Emperor of Russia from 1825 until 1855, known as one of the most reactionary of the Russian monarchs. On the eve of his death, the Russian Empire reached its historical zenith spanning over 20 million square kilometers...

. Nikolay Boshnyak was appointed the commander of the post, which became the first Russian settlement in the area, and the predecessor of today's Sovetskaya Gavan.

After the abandonment of the military post before 1900, the area became a center for timber
Timber may refer to:* Timber, a term common in the United Kingdom and Australia for wood materials * Timber, Oregon, an unincorporated community in the U.S...

 production, including concessions to companies from other countries such as Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...


The bay and the settlement were renamed to Sovetskaya Gavan ('Soviet Harbor') in 1922.

During the second world war, construction was begun on a railway from the right bank of the Amur River near Komsomolsk-on-Amur
Komsomolsk-on-Amur is a city in Khabarovsk Krai, Russia, situated on the left bank of Amur River. It is located on the BAM railway line, northeast of Khabarovsk. Population: -Geography and climate:...

 to the Pacific coast, with Sovetskaya Gavan chosen as the endpoint. Sovetskaya Gavan received town status in 1941, the railway reached the town in 1945. This section of railway was the first section to be completed of what would later became the Baikal Amur Mainline.

From 1950 until 1954, the city was the site of the prison camp Ulminlag of the gulag
The Gulag was the government agency that administered the main Soviet forced labor camp systems. While the camps housed a wide range of convicts, from petty criminals to political prisoners, large numbers were convicted by simplified procedures, such as NKVD troikas and other instruments of...


In 1958, the city's northern neighborhood, on the Vanino Bay, was separated into a separate urban-type settlement
Urban-type settlement
Urban-type settlement ; , selyshche mis'koho typu ) is an official designation for a type of locality used in some of the countries of the former Soviet Union...

 of Vanino
Vanino, Khabarovsk Krai
Vanino is an urban-type settlement and the administrative center of Vaninsky District of Khabarovsk Krai, Russia. It is an important port on the Strait of Tartary , served by the BAM railway line...


In 1963/64 6 sounding rockets of "Kosmos 2"-type were launched. They reached heights until 402 km

It is served by Kamenny Ruchey
Kamenny Ruchey
Kamenny Ruchey is an air base in Russia located 29 km north of Sovetskaya Gavan. Located just north of Vanino, this is a major military airfield that has 63 hardened areas...

 naval airfield (also known as Mongokhto) as well as Maygatka Airport.


Sovetskaya Gavin has a humid continental climate
Humid continental climate
A humid continental climate is a climatic region typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot summers and cold winters....

Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...


Economy and infrastructure

Sovetskaya Gavan's economy is largely dependent on the harbor and related activities; the town has a deep water port for cargo and fishing vessels, as well as ship repair facilities. There is also some foodstuffs production, such as fish processing.

In 1973 a rail ferry link to the island Sakhalin
Sakhalin or Saghalien, is a large island in the North Pacific, lying between 45°50' and 54°24' N.It is part of Russia, and is Russia's largest island, and is administered as part of Sakhalin Oblast...

 was opened, joining the mainland at Vanino
Vanino is the name of several inhabited localities in Russia.Urban localities*Vanino, Khabarovsk Krai, a work settlement in Vaninsky District of Khabarovsk KraiRural localities*Vanino, Kirov Oblast, a village in Afanasyevsky District of Kirov Oblast...

, 30 km north of Sovetskaya Gavan. Whilst this diminished Sovetskaya Gavan's importance as a trading port, until the 1990s it remained an important supply harbor for the Russian Pacific Fleet.

Sovetskaya Gavan is connected by rail to Komsomolsk-on-Amur
Komsomolsk-on-Amur is a city in Khabarovsk Krai, Russia, situated on the left bank of Amur River. It is located on the BAM railway line, northeast of Khabarovsk. Population: -Geography and climate:...

, the section of line being the most easterly section of the Baikal Amur Mainline.

External links

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