Address: 12 Taras Shevchenko Boulevard, Kyiv, 01004, Ukraine
Telephone: +380 (44) 224-90-87
Literary Memorial House-Museum of Taras
Address: 8-A prov. Shevchenko, Kyiv, 01001, Ukraine
Telephone: +380 (44) 228-35-11
na Priortsi" (The House on Priorka)
Address: 5 Vyshhorodska Street, Kyiv, 04074, Ukraine
Telephone: +380 (44) 432-76-27
Museum open Tuesday to Saturday.
Memorial Museum on Taras' Hill
Address: Kaniv, Cherkasy Province, 19000, Ukraine
Telephone: +380 (4736) 42368, Fax: 42086
Preserve "Taras Shevchenko Homeland"
Director: Lyudmyla Shevchenko
Address: Shevchenkove Village, Zvenihoridsky Region, Cherkasy Province,
Telephone: (04740) 9-53-49, 2-01-28
of 'Kobzar' by Taras Shevchenko"
Address: Cherkasy, 37 B. Vyshnevetskoho Street, 18000, Ukraine
Telephone: (0472) 35-41-05
Museum open Tuesday to Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, 9 am to 5
pm, Admission free.
of 'Zapovit' by Taras Shevchenko"
Address: 08400, Kyiv Region, Pereyaslav - Khmelnytsky, 8 Shevchenko
Telephone: (04567) 5-41-03, (04567) 5-42-03
Museum open every day, 9 am to 5 pm.
House of Taras Shevchenko" in Yahotyn
Address: 69-A Nezalezhnosty Street, Yahotyn, Kyiv Region, 07700,
Telephone: (04475) 5-36-36
Museum in the Academy of Arts
Address: 17 Universitetskaja Naberezhnaja, St. Petersburg, Russia
Telephone: (812) 323-61-69, 323-6496; 323-35-78
Museum open Wednesday to Sunday, 11 am to 4 pm by appointment only.
Taras Shevchenko Museum in Orsk
Address: 33 Shevchenko Street, Orsk, Russia
Telephone: (3537) 25-66-42
Taras Shevchenko Museum - Guardhouse in
Address: 24 Sovetskaja Street, Orenburg, Russia
Telephone: (3532) 77-46-50
Museum open Tuesday to Sunday, 11 am to 6 pm.
Taras Shevchenko Museum in Fort Shevchenko
Address: 7 Maya Uly Street, Mangystauskaya Region, Fort Shevchenko,
Telephone: (729) - 382-2333
National Museum (Kyiv)
The Taras Shevchenko National Museum was founded on the basis of
the former Shevchenko Art Gallery in Kharkiv, and the Taras Shevchenko
Ukrainian Historical Museum in Kyiv. The museum's collection is
of unique value, comprised of Shevchenko's original works of art,
documents relating to his life and creations, the copies of his
hand-written manuscripts, rare photos of the poet and his friends,
first printings of Shevchenko's writings, including his autobiography,
almost all of the poet's published works, literature about him,
beginning with that which came out during his lifetime, and with
later and contemporary works from his homeland and that published
in foreign lands.
Over four thousand exhibits are placed within the museum's 24 halls
and rooms. There are over 800 original paintings, portraits, illustrations,
etchings by Shevchenko, the poet's personal objects, photocopies
of his manuscripts (26 oil paintings, 522 watercolours, pencil drawings
and etchings, 166 memorial objects, 533 pieces of singular archival
concerns, such as Shevchenko's autographs, and erection of Shevchenko
monuments, and much more.)
The museum's book-fund consists of 34, 867 items, of which 8181
directly relate to Shevchenko. The works of artists-painters, sculptors,
writers and composers, in which Shevchenko's life and creativity
is reflected, are also featured in the exhibit halls. The art of:
K. P. Briullov, I. Repin, V. Tropinin, I. Kramskoy, V. Shternberg,
I. Sokolov, M. Bashylov, K. Trutovsky, L. Zhemchuzhnykov, I. Soshenko,
M. Mykeshyn, S. Vasylkivsky, M. Samokshyn, O. Slastion, F. Krasytsky,
I. Yizhakevych, V. Kasian, M. Derehus, K. Trokhymenko, M. Khmelko,
and others. There are works by sculptors, F. Kamensky, P. Klodt,
V. Beklemishev, F. Balavensky, I. Kavaleridze, M. H. Lysenko, I.
Makahon, P. Movchun, V. Znoba, and others is on display.
In several other halls, material, including translations of the
poet's works in many foreign languages, is exhibited and attests
to the world the importance of Shevchenko's creative genius.
Literary Memorial House-Museum of
Taras Shevchenko (Kyiv)
The house where Taras Shevchenko lived for a period of about one
year (1846 - 47) is one of the most interesting nineteenth century
buildings still standing in Kyiv. It is also the first Literary
and Memorial Museum dedicated to the poet.
The house was built in 1835 in an old part of Kyiv called Kozyne
Boloto (Goat Swamp) by a minor official, Ivan Zhytnytskyi. Taras
Shevchenko, then an official artist of the Kyiv Archeographic Commission,
took up residence in 1846 and lived here for about a year. During
this time he wrote poetry, worked on his landscape paintings, met
friends and travelled to various parts of Ukraine with the Archeographic
Commission as part of his duties. The Russian painter Mikhail Sazhin
and the Ukrainian writer Oleksandr Afanasiev-Chuzhbynskyi, who in
his memoirs wrote of this period in the poet's life, were living
in the same building with Shevchenko.
After Shevchenko's death, the building was maintained with private
effort. In 1918, when an inventory of cultural monuments was being
made, Vasyl Krychevskyi, then a professor at the Kyiv Arts Institute
started a campaign to open a museum dedicated to Taras Shevchenko.
Under the leadership of Krychevskyi and according to his project
of the building reconstruction, the installation of the first exhibit
was begun in 1925. The well-known literary scholar Volodymyr Mijakowskyi
was participating in the project. The opening of the first Shevchenko
Museum took place on November 10, 1928.
During World War II the original exhibits of the Museum were evacuated
to Novosibirsk, along with the holdings of the State Shevchenko
Museum and the Tretiakov Gallery. After Soviet forces retook Kyiv
in 1944 the Museum resumed its work. The building and its grounds
were restored in various stages in order to maintain the spirit
and style of Shevchenko's time. On August 4, 1980, the Kyiv city
administration officially designated the Museum a State Monument
of History and Culture.
The Museum exhibition consists of two parts: a memorial, which
presents the room and studio where Taras Shevchenko lived and worked,
and a literary-artistic part which relates his stay in Kyiv and
elaborates on the role of this house in his life and work as a poet
and artist. The exhibition contains original items - Shevchenko's
etchings and personal belongings, his clothes, engraving tools,
editions of his Kobzar with his autographs, water-colours by his
colleague Mikhail Sazhin, paintings by contemporary artists and
nineteenth century prints of Kyiv.
The Museum stands in the very centre of the city and anyone who
enters its grounds has a chance to revisit Kyiv of the mid-nineteenth
"Hata na Priortsi"
(The House on Priorka)
Not many people, including the residents of Ukraine's capital,
know that in Kyiv there are three Taras Shevchenko museums. Two
are situated in the very heart of the city, and the third, in its
suburb. The great poet, during his last stay in Ukraine, lived in
the third for two weeks in 1859.
The museum is named "The House on Priorka". When Taras
Shevchenko returned to Ukraine in 1859, this was to be his third
and last encounter with his native country. His wish, for some reason,
was not to settle in the centre of the city, as was stated in the
first biography of Shevchenko, written by Mykhailo Chaliy, but to
take lodging in Priorka, a suburb of Kyiv. Actually, Priorka was
a historical district of Kyiv, mentioned in the documents of the
Kyiv magistry, and in the Historiography of Kyiv by Mykola Zakrevsky.
The name is derived from the word "prior", the dominant
Catholic priory (monastery), and to whom, at one time, all this
land belonged. In the surrounding vicinity, which was entirely similar
to a village (with wooden houses and cherry orchards), the people
worked, as a rule, at market gardening, fruit cultivating, and sold
their products in Kyiv's market places. In 1834, Priorka became
a city, and its residents, called townsfolk (middle-class citizens),
continued to carry out their own dealings. It could be said, that
Shevchenko was attracted to this picturesque place by its orchards
and gardens, or, possibly, he simply did not want to be in "eye's
view". As the landlady of the house, Varvara Matviyivna Pashkovska
stated that, when asking about the lodging, he said, with ever so
much originality, "I walked, and walked, and I sighted a house,
not a manor-house, not a peasant house, but one so white, white
as cream, with an overgrown orchard. In the courtyard, children's
shirts were drying, their sleeves waving - calling out to me. So,
I entered. Would you consider taking me as a lodger, and put me
into debt for I have no money? I will settle with you - they will
send me money from Petersburg." Vavrvara Pashkovska was an
educated woman and knew Taras Shevchenko's poetry. For her entire
life, she was extremely proud that Shevchenko himself was renting
a room in her house. Her humble reminiscences about the poet are
full of sympathy. She recalled that Shevchenko's favourite dishes
were borsch, buckwheat perogy with cheese and millet kasha. She
also recalled that he liked to wake up before sunrise and enter
the kitchen asking the hostess to sing a nice folk song. Here the
visitor sees Taras Shevchenko as a sincere, warm and open hearted
person who could win over local residents - especially their children,
of whom he was very fond . He told them stories and gave them candy,
gingerbread, bublyky and nuts.
"The House on Priorka" became a subsidiary of the Shevchenko
National State Museum in 1989. It became a cultural core of the
Podil district of Kyiv. The Museum depicts Shevchenko, the person,
upon the background of Kyiv of that period. On display are photographs,
documents and common household items of that time. The museum conducts
personal exhibitions, children's art exhibitions, contests, poetry
evenings and other events.
Museum on Taras' Hill
The memorial museum on Taras' Hill is part of the Shevchenko national
preserve, opened in 1925. It covers an area of 42 hectares including
the sacred place of Ukraine's nation - the burial grounds of Taras
Shevchenko, "Tarasova Svitlytsia" (the first folk museum
of Kobzar, built with people's money in 1884, originally, a house
where a sitekeeper lived), and the Memorial Museum dedicated to
the poet's memory. The building of the Memorial Museum designed
by architects Vasyl Krychevsky, who is considered an author of Ukrainian
architectural modern style, and Petro Kostyrko was built in 1935
- 37. Architects designed a palace-museum associated with the image
of a white Ukrainian house where a genius of the Ukrainian nation
was born and raised and which he never built on the shores of Dniper
River in Kaniv. High-ceiling rooms were beautified with Ukrainian
decorative murals, wooden ballusters on the second floor and parquette
The museum's collections count over 20,000 unique items including
Taras Shevchenko's original engravings, rare editions of his poetic
works, valuable archive documents, photographs, audio and video
materials, Shevchenko memorabilia as well as art works of prominent
Ukrainian artists including art works by Vasyl Krychevsky.
Major renovation of the building took place in 2003 - 2010. First,
it was decided to renovate the existing building with maximum approximation
to the original architectural plan. However, the work completed
in 2010 had serious deviation from the concept of Vasyl Krychevsky
and Petro Kostyrko.
Original look of the Memorial Museum
Modern look in Galleries
"Taras Shevchenko Homeland"
Today, Taras Shevchenko's birthplace (as is written, "In that
region the land lies close to heaven") incorporates three villages
of Taras' childhood, where young Shevchenko's cradle rocked: Moryntsi,
Kerelivka (since 1929, renamed Shevchenkove), and Budyshchi.
The basis of the present National Site (functioning since 1992)
was the literary-memorial museum in the village of Kerelivka, which
opened in 1939 on the farmstead of Taras' parents. It was there
that he took his first footsteps, recognized people, firstly himself
and later the world. Another part of the National Site is two houses
in the village of Moryntsi. One is a reproduction of the house where
Shevchenko was born. Another house is a house of Yakym Bojko, Taras's
granfather. These houses stand side by side, and are a symbol of
the beginning of his life. It so happened, that although Taras was
born in Moryntsi, his parents moved to Kerelivka when he had not
as yet reached two years of age. Here, the young Taras lived till
the age of fourteen. The museum, situated in the village of Shevchenkove
(former Kerelivka), features exhibits of articles which belonged
to Taras' parents: a table and bench from their house, a stone from
his father's grave, and articles that belonged to his older brother,
Taras Shevchenko's first "university", the deacon's house,
also has been saved. This architectural relic from the second half
of the 18th century has now been restored, and occupies the historical
centre of the village. The building was the property and old summer
residence of Pavlo Englehardt, who owned the village during Taras'
childhood. Englehardt was a military man who came here, to central
Naddniprianshchyna, to rest, hunt, and to replenish his "positive
energy". Actually, it was particularly within the building's
comfort that fourteen year-old Taras was taken to serve as a "kozachok"
- a personal servant.
While living in St.Petersburg, Taras Hryhorovych travelled to Kerelivka
Literary Memorial Museum in Shevchenkove (former Kerelivka)
Interior of the house in Moryntsi
of the Kobzar by Taras Shevchenko' (City of Cherkasy)
This museum is the only one in the world dedicated to one book -
Taras Shevchenko's "Kobzar". Opened in May, 1989, it is
situated in a historically-designated building in which Taras Shevchenko
lived with the Tsybulsky family from April 18 to 22, 1859, which
is duly recorded on the memorial plaque on the building's exterior.
The museum reflects the history of the various collected editions
of Shevchenko's writing, the origins of his creative work, the illustrations
to his poetry, and his "Kobzars" in different translations.
An initiator of the creation of the Museum and its director is a
great great great granddaughter of Taras Shevchenko on his brother,
Mykyta's side, Olha Sharapa.
Shevchenko's "Kobzar", by which the whole world knows
him, was not first published in its entirety. The first edition
that was published in St. Petersburg in 1840, with the assistance
of Yevhen Hrebinka, included only eight of his first creations:
Perebendya, Kateryna, Ivan Pidkova, Topolia, Dumka, Do Osnovyanenka,
Tarasova Nich, and the poem, Dumy moyi, which was written specifically
for this edition. Dumu moyi, became an epigraph, not only for the
first edition of" Kobzar", but also for Taras Shevchenko's
entire creative works.
Of all the editions published during his lifetime, the first "Kobzar"
received the greatest attention: fine paper, handy format, and clear
type. A remarkable feature of this "Kobzar" is the book's
opening etching-illustration of a folk singer-kobzar with a young
lad-guide, done by V. Shternberg. This illustration, not as an unrelated
subject, but as a generalized image of a kobzar, gave the collection
its name. This etching, which faced the title page, created the
required atmosphere which would attract a reader to the picturesque
world of the Taras Shevchenko's poetry. The publication and appearance
of the first "Kobzar", even in its tsarist censored form,
achieved tremendous literary and national importance. Only a few
copies of T. H. Shevchenko's 1840 "Kobzar" have survived
worldwide, and that is why one of them is the pride of the Cherkasy
Another valuable edition which came into existence during the poet's
lifetime, the 1860 "Kobzar", is also exhibited in the
museum. It was published by Platon Symyrenko (Shevchenko became
acquainted with him in the village of Mliyiv during the time of
his last trip across Ukraine in 1859). P. Symyrenko, a sugar-factory
owner in Ukraine, and a patron of literary arts, allotted 1100 rubles
for the publication of this "Kobzar". This edition was
considerably fuller than the previous one. It contained 17 masterpieces,
and a portrait of T. H. Shevchenko. It truly enhances the entire
In addition to these books, many costly and less-rare editions
of Shevchenko's masterpieces are on display. They all differ as
to the number of poems included, the completeness of texts, illustrations,
as well as the quality of the printing process. The museum's funds
contain large collections of Shevchenko picture postcards, badges,
medals, posters, and other items, which are exhibited periodically.
The museum's unique distinctiveness lies in its simple, as if in
a bookshop, manner of displaying its considerable collection of
Shevchenko publications, which are accompanied by documents and
material relevant within the context of one or another edition.
The museum is beautifully decorated with wood, which harmoniously
enhances the displays with a refined, calm and natural atmosphere.
of Zapovit by Taras Shevchenko' (Pereyaslav-Khmelnytsky)
Former mansion of a doctor Andriy Kozachkivsky, built in 1820, now
is a Museum of "Zapovit" of Taras Shevchenko. In this
place in the night of December 24, 1845, the poet wrote his immortal
Zapovit (My Testament).
Taras Shevchenko was fortunate enough to meet many remarkable personalities,
something he invariably spoke about with gratitude and pride. Those
with whom he developed close personal relationships included Andriy
Kozachkivsky whose affectionate friendship the poet valued all his
A professional physician, Kozachkivsky graduated from the St. Petersburg
Academy of Medicine and Surgery in 1835. Back home from a trip round
the world, he was catching up on news in literature and arts and
thus came across the almanac Lastivka (The Swallow) edited by Yevhen
Hrebnka. There he read Taras Shevchenko's poems for the first time
and was greatly impressed by their simplicity and strength. He asked
his Ukrainian countrymen to introduce him to the author. That first
meeting took place in the fall of 1841. They immediately became
friends and talked late into the night. From then on, Shevchenko
would often call on his new friend to read to him his latest poems.
When Kozachkivsky moved to Pereyaslav (now the town of Pereyaslav-Khmelnitsky)
where he worked as a doctor and a teacher of medicine at the local
seminary, Shevchenko often stayed with him during his visits to
Ukraine. Shevchenko made one such visit in August 1845, just after
graduating from the Academy of Art with the diploma of a "free
artist." After a stay in Pereyaslav, he continued his trip
but soon caught cold and had to spend.several days in bed in the
town of Mirhorod near Poltava. Realizing that he should not travel
in such a state, he returned to Pereyaslav for treatment, but left
again as soon as his health showed a slight improvement. However,
his recovery was far from complete, and on December 24, 1845, the
poet fell seriously ill. He was in critical condition by the time
he was brought back to Pereyaslav, where Kozachkivsky did all he
could to save him. At a certain stage it looked as if the doctor
might fail. And thus, one night when all hope of recovery seemed
lost, Taras Shevchenko lit a candle, sat down at a table and wrote
his famous My Testament. Finally, when the remedies prescribed by
his doctor and Shevchenko's own youthful organism overcame the illness
and the poet's health took a turn for the better, Shevchenko grew
more cheerful and communicative and would often talk to Kozachkivsky's
That was an extremely fruitful period for the poet. In Pereyaslav
he wrote The Housemaid and The Caucasus. He also painted several
landscapes and a self-portrait, which unfortunately has not been
The friends met again in 1859. As Andriy Kozachkivsky wrote in
his memoirs, in June of that year a mail coach drove into his yard.
He did not recognize the passenger at first. The exile with its
innumerable moral and physical sufferings had altered Shevchenko
almost beyond recognition. Silently, they greeted each other and
went inside the house. Too moved to speak, the poet paced up and
down the room. Then he saw the bustle of a fair through a window
and suggested they go there at once. There, among the people who
were so painfully dear to him, he gradually calmed down. When they
returned from the fair, Shevchenko had cheered up sufficiently to
tell Kozachkivsky about his ordeal. After lunch he wanted to see
the Dnieper and set out for the river on foot without waiting until
the horses were harnessed. Kozachkivsky picked him up when he was
already past the boundary of the town and they drove on together
.That was an unforgettable experience. The friends caught some fish
in the river and made soup of them. It was a quiet Ukrainian night,
and the sky was strewn with myriads of stars. Placing his hands
under his head, Shevchenko lay on the grass, telling his friend
about his plans. He said he intended to buy a small lot on the steep
riverbank near the town of Kaniv opposite the village of Prokhorivka
and to settle there for the rest of his life.
Later that year, on his way back from Kiev, the poet again visited
his friend in Pereyaslav and stayed two nights at his place. There
he wrote down some of his early forgotten poems, which Kozachkivsky
knew by heart. Then he left for St. Petersburg. They were never
to meet again.
The museum has 12 halls. Three of them are devoted to the history
of Pereyaslav. The other four are memorial rooms: bedrooms, library,
the room where Taras Shevchenko lived and Andriy Kozachkivsky's
office. The other three halls are literary-artistic expositions.
House of Taras Shevchenko" (Yahotyn)
Museum "Courtyard House of Taras Shevchenko" in Yahotyn,
which opened in 2003, is one of the subsidiaries of Yahotyn State
Courtyard House used to be a part of Prince M. H. Repnyn's estate,
and served as a hotel for the Repnyn family's guests. In this very
place, Taras Shevchenko stayed during his visit to Yahotyn in 1843,
and later in 1845 and 1859. Here he painted and wrote. Walls of
the courtyard house were also painted by his hand.
In the Museum's four halls, there are over 100 exhibits. Among
them are original pieces of furniture of Repnyn's estate - in particular,
a desk and a chair where Taras Shevchenko worked , original art
works that belonged to Repnyn's family, and paintings by contemporary
Museum in the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg
Taras Shevchenko's memorial apartment-studio is the only one in
the St. Petersburg exposition that introduces life and work of the
prominent Ukrainian poet and artist, where he lived and died in
Taras Shevchenko's memorial apartment-studio was open for visitors
in 1964 to comemorate the 150th anniversary of the poet's birth.
A set-up of the apartment and the studio includes original furniture,
household items and personal things of the poet, his original engravings,
copies and reproductions of his paintings, and rare editions of
his poetry books, as well as books about his life and work. The
exposition was recreated according to the reminiscences of Shevchenko's
contemporaries, N. Leskov, I. Turgenev, and I. Mikeshyn. Exposition
of the Museum is concentrated on Shevchenko- the artist. One can
see the early art works of Taras Shevchenko, which were accomplished
before enrolling at St. Petersburg Academy of Art. Among them are
watercolour portraits and sketches for historical compositions painted
on the instructions of the Drawing School of the Society of Encouragement
of Arts. Taras Shevchenko completed a preparatory course of that
school and got recommendation papers to enter the best art institution
of that time - Royal Academy of Arts. On display are copies of a
"Self-Portrait" (1840), "Katerina" (1842), graphic
art works from his series "Picturesques Ukraine" (1844),
that were done while studying in St. Petersburg Academy of Arts.
Visitors also can see the art works of his exile period : "Kazakh
boy playing with the cat", "Novopetrovsk Fortress from
Khivian Road", and others. The late period of Shevchenko-the
artist, is introduced by portraits of P. Klodt, F. Tolstoy, F. Bruni,
and art compositions "Parable about vine-grower" and "Virsavia".
All displayed works of that period are engravings.
Copies of archival documents, such as Shevchenko's birth records,
a document about releasing him from serfdom and his academic certificate
are also on display.
Museum open by appointment only, tel. 323-35-78.
Shevchenko Museum in Orsk
Taras Shevchenko Museum in Orsk was opened on March 10, 1986, in
the old section of Orsk, in its historical zone on the site of the
former Orsk fortress. The street, on which the museum is located,
has carried the name of the great Ukrainian poet since 1908. The
building in which the museum is situated belonged, at one time,
to a resident Orsk family. The principal exhibit, a gift from the
Taras Shevchenko National State Museum, is comprised of paintings,
documents, and other items. The halls of the museum are supplemented,
at all times, with gifts from visiting guests, mainly from Ukraine.
The poet's entire life is revealed before the visitors, with the
main attention being paid to Orsk's places where he served. They
are included in the panoramic displays, and the dioramas - the work
of Orsk's artists and designers. The number of excursions and visitors
grows from year to year.
Shevchenko Museum - Guardhouse in Orenburg
The museum was opened on March 9, 1989. It is situated on the site
of the main guardhouse of the former separate Orenburg complex in
which Shevchenko was imprisoned in April - May, 1850. The visitor's
attention is drawn to the small cell, of authentic brick walls and
the original sharp-stone floor, although all else has been reconstructed.
Figures of the guarding officer and soldiers standing in front of
the cell were created in the style of the Orenburg cossack by Lviv
artists, Volodymyr and Ivan Turetski and Orest Hnatyv. By implementing
various museum techniques in the exhibit hall (the former room used
in the training of guard-sentries), the main events and features
of those months are recreated. Reproductions and copies of the works
of Shevchenko-the artist, mainly the ones from Orenburg, stretch
out along two rows in the corridors with the semi-circular ceiling.
Woven and embroidered towels, created by the poet, Y. V. Kovtun's
great-granddaughter, are displayed in the museum's room of gifts.
The room also features Japanese translated works of Shevchenko,
an old portrait from Dnipropetrovsk, a glazed wall-dish by the well-known
artisan, V. P. Panyada, and much more. The following people actively
participated in the creation of the museum: Honoured Art Worker
and Laureate of State prize of Ukraine - A. V. Haidamaka, senior
research worker and now, Vice-Director of Research in the Taras
Shevchenko National Museum - V. M. Yatsiuk, museum workers from
Orenburg, R. P. Chubareva, T. M. Artiushenko; artists, A. A. Vlasenko,
V. M. Yeremenko, and others.
The memorial-museum has a printed guide-book (published in 1991),
which has become very popular in the city.
Shevchenko Museum in Fort Shevchenko
For almost seven years (from 17 October 1850 to 2
August 1857), the highly gifted Ukrainian poet and talented painter-artist
Taras Shevchenko was banished in punishment to the Novopetrovsk
fortification on the Manhyshlak peninsula. The harsh climate, "sand
and stones", but mainly slavery incited Shevchenko - the soldier
- to call this place "an open grave", "a wide prison",
"a boundless prison".
In Shevchenko's creative legacy we find a good deal of works portraying
the Novopetrovsk fortification. It towered above the calciferous
rocky cliffs, three kilometers from the shore of the Caspian (Khvalynsk)
shore. Today the fortress is in ruins. However, the Novopetrovsk
fortification commandment, Irakliy Uskov's cottage has been carefully
preserved, and, from 1932, has served as the Taras Shevchenko Museum.
The intention of the museum is to depict one of the most difficult
periods in the poet's life. The years spent in the Novopetrovsk
fortification, with the exception of the soldiers' drills, for Taras
Hryhorovych, were filled with creativity and unforgettable encounters.
The development of a new exposition for the Taras Shevchenko Memorial
Museum, alongside Kazakh workers, was augmented by the participation
of Ukrainian artist-painter Anatoliy Haidamaka, and research workers
from the Taras Shevchenko National State Museum in Kyiv, Liudmyla
Zinchuk, Mariya Korniychuk. The museum display offers copies and
reproductions of paintings and drawings executed by Shevchenko during
his residence in the Novopetrovsk fortification. The most rare and
vital editions of the great Kobzar's (Bard's) works, by contemporary
publications in the Ukrainian, Russian and Kazakh languages, can
be encountered in the museum's halls by the visitor. The works of
artists dedicated to the poet while residing in the Novopetrovsk
fortification are also exhibited in these surroundings. A vase,
which contains the sacred earth from the great Kobzar's grave, is
displayed in one of the museum's halls.
In the museum's park, where the spirit of Shevchenko
greets you, is a mud hut where the artist, in solitude, wrote and
painted and a well from which he withdrew water. On the territory
of the memorial-museum complex, you will discover the only saved
sculptural work designed by Shevchenko - a graveside monument to
Dmytryk Uskov. You also can see the first in the world monument
of the "Kobzar", which was constructed by Karazhusup,
and erected by Irakliy Uskov in the Novopetrovsk fortification in
The museum's orchard spreads out along two sides. It was first
laid out by Taras Shevchenko in October, 1850, in the garrison garden,
when he planted a willow branch which he had found in the town of
Huryev. Surprisingly for Shevchenko himself, it took root in this
wilderness. In his diary, he named it "favourite", "cherished",
but the people began to call it "Taras' willow". In time,
the willow spread all around, becoming a grove, and survived in
spite of the severe climate. "Taras' willow" has held
out for over 150 years! Branches from it grew into willows in many
places of Ukraine. To great regret, the old willow perished not
too long ago. However, Ukrainians brought branches of the original
Shevchenko's willow from Kyiv and Lviv and planted them on Kazakh
land. In 1925 the Kazakh Soviet government declared a park untouchable.
The memorial-museum complex presents an invincible image of Taras
Shevchenko to the visitor, which has great meaning not only for
the Ukrainian people, but also for the Kazakh nation. He was one
of the first artists to paint the Kazakhs, themselves, and the landscape
of this terrain. He also planted the first tree in the Novopetrovsk
From 1939, the Kazakh city of the Manhyshlak peninsula, Fort Oleksandrivsk
(up to 1857 Novopetrovsk fortress), began to carry the name of the
Ukrainian Kobzar. Now, it is Fort Shevchenko. To this day, this
land defends the good memories about the great Ukrainian poet and
artist, Taras Shevchenko.