January 13, 2017
2925 RUSSIA (Pskov Oblast) - The Old Mill in Mikhailovskoye
Located in the heart of the Pskov Oblast, on the spurs of the Valdai Hills, not far from Pskov and the border of Latvia, the State museum-reserve of Alexander Pushkin «Mikhailovskoye» is a unique monument of Russian culture of national significance. In Russian history Mikhailovskoye, Trigorskoye, Petrovskoye, Pushkinskie Gory (or Holy Hills) are connected with life and creative activity of Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin (1799-1837), probably the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature.
Its area includes several villages, each having a mansion and a park, surrounding forests, and riverside landscape. Here has been the family estate of the great-grandfather of Pushkin, Abram Petrovich Gannibal (1696-1781), a very special character. He was an African page kidnapped to Constantinople as a gift to the Ottoman Sultan and later transferred to Russia as a gift for Peter the Great. The boy had been given a proper Russian name, had been baptized, and raised in the Emperor's court household as his godson.
After education in France as a military engineer, Gannibal (nicknamed the Moor of Peter the Great) became governor of Reval and eventually Général en Chef (the third most senior army rank) in charge of the building of sea forts and canals in Russia. On 12 January, 1742 most of the land which made up Mikhalovskaya Guba was granted in perpetuity by decree of Empress Elizabeth, daughter of Peter the Great, to Gannibal, for his services to Russia.
The poet first visited his mother's rural estate in 1817, after graduating from Tsarskoye Selo lycee and was enchanted by the natural beauty of the place, the poetry of the peasant life and the aura of the past. He spent here two years in exile (1824-1826), and until the end of his life made frequent visit to Mikhailovskoye, which became for him a place of intensive poetic creation. Today the Pushkin estate looks almost the same as on the lithograph by P.A. Alexandrov from a drawing by the Pskovian land-surveyor I.S. Ivanov made in 1838.
On the west side meadowland stretches from the edge of the estate to the River Sorot and Lake Malenets. To the east the estate is adjoined by a broad glade surrounded on three sides by pine forest and birch groves, and on the fourth by a group of limes about 150 years old. From these lime trees an avenue leads down a slight slope to a pond with a wooden humpback bridge over it. About one kilometre from Mikhailovskoye, not far from the "forested hills" on the bank of the Sorot, is the ancient site of Savkino, and the old mill shown in the postcard.
About the stamp
The stamp, released on March 22, 2016, was the second issue having as theme postcrossing, after the one of 2015.
State museum-reserve of Alexander Pushkin «Mikhailovskoye» - Official website
Pushkinskie Gory - Wikitravel
The Pushkin Mountains - Russian Moto Travel Company
Sender: Katya / inzzwiteln (postcrossing) RU-5256502
Sent from Severodvinsk (Arkhangelsk Oblast / Russia), on 01.12.2016