Observations at the Cemetery of the Russian Army who fought in The Siege of Sevastopol
by Pavel Lyashuk.

For the very first days of the siege of Sevastopol, the Russian casualties were buried on the North side of the city. There were loaded on ships by a company of sailors named after Gribnyov. They then carted the dead from the shore line to the burial grounds. There were two cemeteries. The cemetery located on the north shore was for the army infantry and there was one for the sailors which was located elsewhere. Regular conscripts (infantry) were buried in mass graves (bratskyie mogily) with no inscriptions. Officers including generals were buried with individual graves with inscriptions. These graves have survived the ravages of time (and World War II when the hill was an artillery position). For example: Here are graves of officers. The 3rd Sapper Battalion, Second Lieutenant, Marseyevskyi, killed on this date. Pavel Lyashuk did not say the date) Memorial plates and tombstones were placed later after the end of the war.
One of the commanders of the siege defenses in the first part of the siege, Prince Vasil'chikov, after the war, became defense minister and he proposed to built at the cemetery a church for which he selected the symbol of eternity, a pyramid. At this point Pavel Lyashuk pointed a mass grave. The pyramid was designed by a Russian officer of German descent named Avdeev. Some inscriptions on the walls are in German. There are inscriptions in Polish. Even in Ukrainian. The mass graves held up to fifty men in rows. Sometimes officers were buried in pairs. The man on the street calls this the "Hundred Thousand," but there are only forty thousand. After the end of the war people were buried here. The army General Prince M.D. Gorchakov, Totlebin and many other generals were brought back here for burial. The tomb stones have carved shields and some have stone artillery pieces. The shield of Prince Gorchakov was shown to us. The most noted people of the war were buried along a central alley. Even some of the tombstones are shaped as artillery pieces. For instance at the time of the siege, an Admiral Peter Ivanovich Kislinskyi was a Captain of the first rank. Another was man of Greek descent, the Commandant at-arms of the city of Sevastopol, M.N. Kumani, who later made Contre-Admiral.
The Crimea was frequently visited by the acclaimed landscape painter, A. I. Kuindzhi. In the picturesque corner of the south shore of the Crimea not far from Kikeneiz (the present village of Opolznevoye, south of Simeiz) was the studio of the painter. Arkhip Ivanovich Kuindzhi was born in the city of Mariupol in the Donetsk region. The history of Christian believers of the Crimea is tied to this city. In 1774 the Russian government concluded an agreement with the last Crimean Khan Shagin-Girem on the re-settlement of the Christian population to the Northern Azov Sea local. Four years later more than 31 thousand Christians, mostly Greeks departed from the Crimea. This is how the Donetsk region came to have settlements with Crimean names: Yalta, Gurzuf, Staryi Kruim and others. Amongst the deportees were the ancestors of Arkhip Ivaonovich Kuindzi.
Another known Greek who fought in the siege, was Ivanovich Stavraki, a Major General who died in 1892. A grave which held several officers was also shown. Note that Greeks were resettled by Catherine the Great after the foundation of Sevastopol. Some of the monuments have the sculptor's name inscribed on the stone. The guard post sculpture is the resting place of Totlebin. You can a see a map of Sevastopol on the sculpture, another depicting the defensive positions of the Russians, a third Totlebin's personal shield. A fourth depicts the Plevna defensive position. The vault is below and above scenes depicting his life's work. He was an engineer. Axs, shovels. And an inscription on top Duke Eduard Ivanovich Totlebin.
The pyramid chapel has inscribed on the walls all army units having fought in the siege, the dates during which the units were garrisoned, the losses incurred, i.e. how many people these units lost in action. When the chapel was built, two medals were placed in the foundation commemorating the defense of Sevastopol and war of Crimea. These were awarded to all defenders, including sailors. This church was completed fifteen years after the end of the siege, in 1870. At one time the wall tablets were damaged but they have been restored. The cross was torn down but replaced. The chapel suffered damage from bomb explosions, shrapnel and bomb fragments during World War II. The tablets contain the combat losses of the regiments of the 4th, 5th, 6th infantry divisions through the 17th divisions.
The 4th Infantry Division consisted of the Byelozerskiy, Olonetskyi, Shlissel'burg Yeager regiment, and Ladozhskyi regiments from the very first days of the garrison deployment. Also listed are the regiments of the 5th division which included the Arkhangelgorod Emperor's regiment, the Vologoskyi, Kostromskyi Yeager regiment, and Galitskyi regiment. On another side are other divisions, such as the Tarutinskyi regiment, the Yakutskyi regiment, the Okhotskyi regiment and Kamchatskyi which built redoubts, lunettes and fortifications and the Azovskyi and Dneprovskyi regiments which captured during the Balaklava battle, the Canrobert hill, as well as the Ukrainskyi, and Odesskyi regiments. Many streets in Sevastopol were named after these regiments. However this does not mean only Yakuts served in the so-called Yakut regiment. Simply in 1801 Emperor Alexander I issued an edict that regiments of the Russian army would be named after places, lakes, and rivers of the Russian empire. Unlike in England were regiments were formed and named for a place. This was arbitrary measure, however some regiments do coincide. Inside the closed chapel, all regiments eight hundred names of officers are inscribed on tablets that died in combat. This does not take into account those that died in other battles of the war. Across the harbor to the left is the building of the academy which produced graduates in the nuclear submarine service. Where the antennae farm could be seen the battle of Inkerman took place. The last combatant to be buried in the cemetery was interred sixty two years after the end of the Crimean War.
The Black Sea fleet ship complements of the navy units are also there.
An interesting episode occurred at the Genoese fortress ruins during the Crimean war. There was a small Garrison at Balaklava under the command of a Greek by the name of Manto. The Russians had two small caliber cannons and made its way up the hill and started to fire on the British army. The British were on their way to Balaklava and they returned fire from the ships and from field artillery firing from the road. The Russians took heavy casualties, and the commander was made prisoner and was quoted as saying: "Had I chosen to surrender unconditionally, you would have despised me for my cowardice, but I have upheld my country's honor and fulfilled my duty."

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