Chernyakhovsk (English)
Черняховск (Russian)
-  Town[1]  -

In Chernyakhovsk

Location of Kaliningrad Oblast in Russia
Location of Chernyakhovsk in Kaliningrad Oblast
Coordinates: 54°38′05″N 21°48′43″E / 54.63472°N 21.81194°E / 54.63472; 21.81194Coordinates: 54°38′05″N 21°48′43″E / 54.63472°N 21.81194°E / 54.63472; 21.81194
Coat of arms
Administrative status (as of November 2011)
Country Russia
Federal subject Kaliningrad Oblast[1]
Administrative district Chernyakhovsky District[1]
Town of district significance Chernyakhovsk[1]
Administrative center of Chernyakhovsky District,[1] town of district significance of Chernyakhovsk[1]
Municipal status (as of July 2009)
Municipal district Chernyakhovsky Municipal District[2]
Urban settlement Chernyakhovskoye Urban Settlement[2]
Administrative center of Chernyakhovsky Municipal District,[2] Chernyakhovskoye Urban Settlement[2]
Population (2010 Census) 40,449 inhabitants[3]
Time zone USZ1 (UTC+02:00)[4]
Founded 1336[5]
Town status since October 10, 1583
Previous names Insterburg (until 1946)
Postal code(s)[6] 238150–238154, 238158, 238165, 238169, 238170, 238816
Dialing code(s) +7 40141
Chernyakhovsk on Wikimedia Commons

Chernyakhovsk (Russian: Черняхо́вск); prior to 1946 known by its German name  Insterburg (Lithuanian: Įsrutis; Polish: Wystruć) is a town and the administrative center of Chernyakhovsky District in Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia, located at the confluence of the Instruch and Angrapa Rivers, forming the Pregolya. Population: 40,449(2010 Census).[3]

Historical affiliations

Teutonic Order 1336–1466
Teutonic Order 1466–1525 (fief of Poland)
Duchy of Prussia 1525–1657 (fief of Poland)
Duchy of Prussia 1657–1701
 Kingdom of Prussia 1701–1871
 German Empire 1871–1918
 Weimar Republic 1918–1933
 Nazi Germany 1933–1945
 Soviet Union 1945–1991
 Russian Federation 1991–present


It was founded in 1336,[5] after the Prussian Crusade, when the Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights Dietrich von Altenburg built a castle called Insterburg at the site of a former Old Prussian fortification. During their campaign against the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the place was devastated in 1376 and again by Polish troops in 1457. The castle had been rebuilt as the seat of a Procurator and a settlement grew up to serve it, also called Insterburg.

When Albert of Brandenburg-Ansbach in 1525 secularized the monastic State of the Teutonic Order, Insterburg became part of the Duchy of Prussia and was granted town privileges on October 10, 1583 by the Prussian regent Margrave George Frederick. The town became part of the Kingdom of Prussia in 1701. Because the area had been depopulated by plague in the early 18th century, King Frederick William I of Prussia invited Protestant refugees who had been expelled from the Archbishopric of Salzburg to settle in Insterburg in 1732.

In 1818, after the Napoleonic Wars, the town became the seat of Insterburg District within the Gumbinnen Region. Michael Andreas Barclay de Tolly died at Insterburg in 1818 on his way from his Livonian manor to Germany, where he wanted to renew his health.

In 1863, a Polish secret organization was founded and operated in Insterburg. It was involved in arms trafficking to the Russian Partition of Poland during the January Uprising. Since May 1864 its leader was Józef Racewicz.

Postcard view of Hindenburgstraße in Insterburg, ca. 1890

Insterburg became a part of the German Empire during the 1871 unification of Germany. On May 1, 1901, it became an independent city separate from Insterburg District. After World War I, the town was separated from the rest of Weimar Germany, as the province of East Prussia had become an exclave. The association football club Yorck Boyen Insterburg was formed in 1921.

During World War II, Insterburg was heavily bombed by the British Royal Air Force on July 27, 1944. The town was stormed by Red Army troops on January 21–22, 1945. As part of the northern part of East Prussia, Insterburg was transferred from Germany to the Soviet Union after the war as previously agreed between the victorious powers at the Potsdam Conference. The German population was either evacuated or expelled and replaced with Russians. In 1946, Insterburg was renamed Chernyakhovsk in honor of the Soviet World War II General of the Army Ivan Chernyakhovsky, who commanded the army that first entered East Prussia in 1944.[5]

After 1989, a group of people introduced the Akhal-Teke horse breed to the area and opened an Akhal-Teke breeding stable.

Administrative and municipal status

Within the framework of administrative divisions, Chernyakhovsk serves as the administrative center of Chernyakhovsky District.[1] As an administrative division, it is, together with five rural localities, incorporated within Chernyakhovsky District as the town of district significance of Chernyakhovsk.[1] As a municipal division, the town of district significance of Chernyakhovsk is incorporated within Chernyakhovsky Municipal District as Chernyakhovskoye Urban Settlement.[2]

Population trends

Year Number
1790 4,972, without military[7]
1875 16,303[8]
1880 18,745[8]
1885 22,227[8]
1890 31,624, incl. 437 Catholics and 348 Jews[8]
1900 27,787, incl. 788 Catholics and 350 Jews[9]
1910 31,624, incl. 29,672 Protestants and 1,040 Catholics[8]
1925 39,311, incl. 36,792 Protestants, 1,174 Catholics, 86 other Christians, and 338 Jews[8]
1933 41,230, incl. 39,458 Protestants, 1,078 Catholics, five other Christians, and 273 Jews[8]
1939 43,620, incl. 40,677 Protestants, 1,388 Catholics, 563 other Christians, and 87 Jews[8]
1959 approx. 29,100
1979 approx. 35,600
1989 Census 39,622[10]
2002 Census 44,323[11]
2010 Census 40,449[3]


Chernyakhovsk is home to the Chernyakhovsk naval air facility.

Notable people

Twin towns and sister cities

Chernyakhovsk is twinned with:



  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Resolution #640
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Law #262
  3. 1 2 3 Russian Federal State Statistics Service (2011). "Всероссийская перепись населения 2010 года. Том 1" [2010 All-Russian Population Census, vol. 1]. Всероссийская перепись населения 2010 года (2010 All-Russia Population Census) (in Russian). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved June 29, 2012.
  4. Правительство Российской Федерации. Федеральный закон №107-ФЗ от 3 июня 2011 г. «Об исчислении времени», в ред. Федерального закона №271-ФЗ от 03 июля 2016 г. «О внесении изменений в Федеральный закон "Об исчислении времени"». Вступил в силу по истечении шестидесяти дней после дня официального опубликования (6 августа 2011 г.). Опубликован: "Российская газета", №120, 6 июня 2011 г. (Government of the Russian Federation. Federal Law #107-FZ of June 31, 2011 On Calculating Time, as amended by the Federal Law #271-FZ of July 03, 2016 On Amending Federal Law "On Calculating Time". Effective as of after sixty days following the day of the official publication.).
  5. 1 2 3 Энциклопедия Города России. Moscow: Большая Российская Энциклопедия. 2003. p. 517. ISBN 5-7107-7399-9.
  6. Почта России. Информационно-вычислительный центр ОАСУ РПО. (Russian Post). Поиск объектов почтовой связи (Postal Objects Search) (Russian)
  7. A. E. Henning: Topographisch-historische Beschreibung der Stadt Insterburg. Königsberg 1794, p. 44.
  8. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Michael Rademacher: Deutsche Verwaltungsgeschichte Ostpreußen - Kreis Insterburg (2006)
  9. Meyers Koversations-Lexikon. 6. Auflage, Band 9, Leipzig und Wien 1908, p. 873.
  10. Demoscope Weekly (1989). "Всесоюзная перепись населения 1989 г. Численность наличного населения союзных и автономных республик, автономных областей и округов, краёв, областей, районов, городских поселений и сёл-райцентров" [All Union Population Census of 1989: Present Population of Union and Autonomous Republics, Autonomous Oblasts and Okrugs, Krais, Oblasts, Districts, Urban Settlements, and Villages Serving as District Administrative Centers]. Всесоюзная перепись населения 1989 года [All-Union Population Census of 1989] (in Russian). Институт демографии Национального исследовательского университета: Высшая школа экономики [Institute of Demography at the National Research University: Higher School of Economics]. Retrieved August 9, 2014.
  11. Russian Federal State Statistics Service (May 21, 2004). "Численность населения России, субъектов Российской Федерации в составе федеральных округов, районов, городских поселений, сельских населённых пунктов – районных центров и сельских населённых пунктов с населением 3 тысячи и более человек" [Population of Russia, Its Federal Districts, Federal Subjects, Districts, Urban Localities, Rural Localities—Administrative Centers, and Rural Localities with Population of Over 3,000] (XLS). Всероссийская перепись населения 2002 года [All-Russia Population Census of 2002] (in Russian). Retrieved August 9, 2014.


External links

Mikhaylovsky Cathedral in Chernyakhovsk
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