First, significant success was achieved in the development of the Volga region and the Urals by Russia. In the Urals at the beginning of the 18th century, the largest metallurgical base of that time was created. The Volga region by this time becomes the breadbasket of the country. But it was the Urals and the Volga region that were areas of the empire, the most vulnerable to the attacks of nomads.
Secondly, as a result of the Northern War, Russia solved the most pressing foreign policy tasks on its western borders and therefore was able to concentrate its main efforts in the east. And here immediately revealed the weakness of the military-political positions of the empire. So, in the west by the time the Russians conquered the shores of the Baltic Sea, and this opened up trade opportunities with Europe. Strongly weakened Sweden and Poland could no longer threaten the Russian state. In the east, a completely different situation took shape. After the unsuccessful Prut campaign of Peter I, the access to the Sea of Azov was again lost, and the strong Ottoman Empire, in alliance with a large number of semi-mass and vassal states, not only closed the way to warm seas for Russia, but also posed a serious threat militarily. The Central Asian caravan trade routes controlled the Khanates and the Emirates hostile to Russia. The unsuccessful campaign in Khiva of the Bekovich-Cherkassky detachment, and then the large defeats of the Cossacks in repelling nomad attacks on Russian territories in 1723 and 1724, showed that in a purely military sense, Russia's capabilities are limited. Moreover, they were so limited that it was not only difficult to conduct an active offensive policy, but even for the safety of the actual Russian settlements it was impossible to be completely sure.
First of all, it was necessary to take care of the fortification of fortifications in Bashkiria, directly adjacent to the South Ural factories. It was the central sector of the defense of the south-eastern border of the Russian state, where mainly Samara and Ufa Cossacks of the Zakamsk defensive line served. Here, in accordance with the Senate Decree of 15 in March 1728, a system of signal beacons is introduced everywhere. All of Bashkiria from the city to the city, from the fortress to the fortress, in 20-30 years was covered with guard towers (lighthouses) with visible distance from one another. Lighthouses were located on the tops of mountains or hills. At the lighthouses guard Cossacks were constantly on duty. When danger approached with the help of light and smoke signals, they let know from the lighthouse to the lighthouse that the enemy was approaching and what its numbers were. If necessary, the outfit called for reinforcements or attacked the enemy himself.
In addition to lighthouses, patrols, posts, and "secrets" were organized in remote places for observation. And so on for hundreds of miles from Bashkiria to the Volga region. But the weak point of the Zakamsk line was its disconnection with the territory of the Yaik Cossacks. The most dangerous was the section of the border between Bashkiria and the Middle Current of Yaik, where the territories inhabited by Yaik Cossacks began. This practically unprotected area attracted the attention of Asian predators, precisely here they penetrated Russian territory and moved freely to the Volga region. To cover this gap on the orders of Empress Catherine I, by the decree of the Military Collegium in 1725, a town was founded at the confluence of the Sakmara River into Yaik. Yaitsky Ataman Merkuryev was instructed to provide the Cossacks who wished to settle in a new place with all the necessary assistance. At the same time, the Collegium clearly stipulated to inhabit the town exclusively with free Cossacks, and by no means fugitive from Russia by peasants. However, in this part of the decree was unfulfilled. Some of the peasants had a desire to flee from the landlords to the Cossacks, where, although it was difficult and dangerous life on the border, but the life of free people. And the Cossacks had the desire and material interest to accept, and sometimes lure, these fugitive people. The fugitives were hired as workers to the well-to-do Cossacks, and from them the bold men were hired to organize various kinds of military events. And the Cossacks, as far as possible, tried to hide the runaway. It is no coincidence that two years later, by decree of the Supreme Privy Council, the Senate was ordered to send fugitives and peasants to the former place of residence from the town of Sakmara. True, this decree was unfulfilled. However, this town was inadequate cover from the raids of nomads. It is characteristic that the Bashkirs who lived in this area, themselves not at that time reliable citizens of the Russian crown and often themselves attacking Russian villages, were forced to ask to build here several fortresses in order to block the road to the nomads. This was due to the fact that their attacks were systematic and the Kirghiz-Kaysak nomads tended to disassemble little who should be robbed, Russians or Bashkirs. By the middle of the 30 of the 18th century, the question of creating a fortification system in this region was acutely included in the agenda. Two events served as a direct reason for this: the formal entry into Russian citizenship in December 1731 of the Kazakhs (then they were called Kirghiz-Kaysaks) of the younger and middle zhuzes; Bashkir uprising 1735 — 1741's.
Accepting Russian citizenship, the Kazakhs hoped first of all that the Russian Empire would help them in the fight against the Dzungars attacking them. Russian military presence in the steppe seemed to them necessary. They themselves asked Empress Anna Ivanovna to build a fortress in the foothills of the Southern Urals. 7 June 1734 of the year, by order of the Empress, the city was founded and commanded "to call this city Orenburg and in any case call and write with this name." The city was originally founded at the mouth of the Ori River. Later, in 1740, Orenburg was moved to Krasnaya Gora tract, the old fortress became known as Orsk. By decree of 18 in October 1742, the city was moved to third place at the mouth of the river Sakmara, where it is now, and the former fortress became known as Krasnogorsk. Construction of Orenburg was begun, it seemed, under the most favorable circumstances. Everyone wanted its construction: Russians, Kazakhs, Bashkirs. But they wanted to achieve different, in essence, even opposing goals. The city under construction could be fully used not only to protect the Kazakhs from the Dzungars, the Bashkirs from the Kazakhs, but also against those and others. They figured it out pretty quickly. In the summer of 1735, an attack on Russian troops led by the State Secretary of the Senate and the founder of Orenburg, IK. Kirillov began Bashkir uprising. Through 2-3, a rebellion swept the whole of Bashkiria. It was a partisan war, unprecedented in the southeastern Russian Empire, in which both warring parties did not hesitate to choose the means. Particularly frequent and cruel attacks by the rebels, along with Russian villages, were villages of Meshcheryaks, Teptyars, Mishars, and Nagaybaks. The rebels had a very difficult relationship with the local Tatars. It was not by chance that during the uprising most of these nations were supported by government forces without hesitation. To suppress the uprising, significant military forces were sent to BNK in 1736, including, in addition to regular troops, up to three thousand Volga Kalmyks, three thousand Ufa bersheriks, about a thousand Don, two thousand Yaik Cossacks. Lieutenant-General A.I. was appointed the chief commander of the region. Rumyantsev. He won two major victories over the rebels on the river Duma and in the mountains between Yaik and Sakmara. But the rebellion did not subside. The final reconciliation of the region was associated with the activities of Prince V.A. Urusov, whom the government handed over command of the troops. In an Asian way he brutally cracked down on the rebels, while the Bashkir elders who did not support the rebels presented on behalf of the empress weapons, cloth, money, grades. Peace in Bashkiria was established. But the government and local administration understood that peace here cannot be strong and durable without creating a reliable defense system. Already during the Bashkir uprising 1735-1741, the leaders of the Russian administration IK. Kirillov, A.I. Rumyantsev, V.A. Urusov, V.N. Tatishchev take emergency measures to complete the construction of the Orenburg defensive line. Outposts, redoubts, fortresses in which Samara, Alekseev, Don, Little Russian, Yaik and Ufa Cossacks are settled for residence are being created. The government pays special attention to strengthening defense on Iset and in the adjacent areas. Chelyabinsk, Chebarkul, Miass, Etkul fortresses are built here in the 30-s of the XVIII century, which, on the one hand, protect the plants of the Southern Urals from nomads, and on the other, they separate Bashkir and Kirghiz-Kaysak (Kazakh) tribes.
Fig. 3. Monument to the first builders of the Chelyabinsk fortress
As a result, in the 30-40 of the 18th century, a system of border fortifications, enormous in scale and length, was created in the Urals and in the Ural region. It includes six defensive lines:
- Samara - from Samara to Orenburg (fortresses Krasnosmarskaya, Bordskaya, Buzulukskaya, Totskaya, Sorochinskaya, Novosergeevskaya, Elshanskaya)
- Sakmarskaya from Orenburg up the river Sakmara on the 136 versst (Prechistinskaya and Vozdvizhenskaya fortresses, the Nikitsky and Yellow redoubts);
- Nizhneyaitskaya - from Orenburg down the Yak on 125 versts to Iletsk town (fortresses Chernorechinskaya, Berdskaya, Tatishchevskaya, Rassypnaya, Nizhneozernaya and 19 Cossack outposts);
- Verkhnejaitskaya - from Orenburg Yaik up to 560 vents to Verkhnejaitskaya fortress (fortress Orskaya, Karagaysky, Guberlinskoy, Elias, lakeside, Kamennoozornaya, Krasnogorskaja, Tanalykskaya, Urtazymskaya, magnetic, Kizilskaya, Verkhnejaitskaya three and thirteen advanced post redoubts);
- Isetskaya - along the Miass river to its confluence with Iset (Miass, Chelyabinsk, Etkkul and Chebarkul fortresses, Ust-Miass and Isetsky fortresses);
- Uysko-Tobolsk - from Verkhneyaitskaya to Zverinogolovskoy fortress, including the Karagai, Uisk, Petropavlovsk, Steppe, Koelsk, Sanary, Kichiginsk, Troitsk, Ust-Uysk fortresses besides her.
This entire system, the 1780 version, was named the Orenburg defensive line. It began from Guriev town on the shores of the Caspian Sea and ended at the Alabuga detachment, located on the border of the Tobolsk province. For her defense, along with the Yaik army, a whole series of government decrees created the Orenburg Cossack army on the basis of a merger of free Cossacks and people who were included in the Cossack class by government decrees. The core of the troops was the communities of Ufa, Alekseev, Samara and Yaik Cossacks resettled to the Orenburg line. The Cossacks (descendants of the Yermakivtsi) were included in the composition of the troops with broad autonomy. In 1741, the first group of Ukrainian Cossacks from 209 families (a total of 849 serving Cossacks) arrived on the line from the Ukraine. To the Cossack class attributed to the relocated during the reign of Peter I archers, not implicated in the rifle rifle. But all this was missing. With all the dislike for runaway peasants, the government was forced to look through the fact that they, with the connivance of the local authorities in the Urals and in Siberia, are being registered as Cossacks. Moreover, with the beginning of the Bashkir uprising, the nominal decree of Empress Anna Ioannovna to all fugitives in the Urals was forgiven their guilt in exchange for agreeing to enroll in the Cossacks in the newly built towns. In the same period, for the defense of the frontier line, all the exiles and even some convicts were recorded as Cossacks. Be that as it may, the number of Cossacks on the Orenburg defensive line grew rapidly. In 1748, the Senate Military Collegium issued a decree on the organization of the Orenburg Irregular Army and on the introduction of the institution of a military ataman. The first chieftain appointed Samara Cossack Mogutov Vasily Ivanovich. The composition of the troops included: Samara, Ufa, Alekseev, Isatian Cossacks, Stavropol baptized Kalmyks, separate teams of resettled Yaik, Don and Little Russian Cossacks and all serving noblemen, boyars and former prisoners (foreigners), retired soldiers and officers enrolled in Cossacks, noblemen, noblemen and former prisoners (foreigners), retired soldiers and officers. , alien people (descendants), settled in the fortresses of the Orenburg line. This decree actually completed a series of government decrees related to the creation of the Orenburg Cossack army, which soon became the third largest among the Cossack troops in Russia. The seniority of the army was borrowed from the oldest Ufa Cossacks. After the conquest of Kazan in 1574, the voivod of Nagim arranged the Ufa fortification, inhabited by city service Cossacks. This date was the year of seniority of the Orenburg army. Consequently, it can be concluded that the Orenburg Cossack army, unlike the Don, Volga and Yaitsky, was formed and strengthened not spontaneously, but was created by decrees from above, organized and combined into a single whole by the administrative-command way. From the very beginning it did not know the veche freemen and the Cossack self-government (except for the Isatian Cossacks), and staff and army officers and officials fueled the army. And yet, in the southeast of the great empire, the Orenburg Cossack army was born, strengthened and honestly serving the Fatherland, powerful, well-organized and disciplined. From the very beginning, it did not know the peace and temporary respite from the very active actions of the aggressively brutal attacks of the neighboring Kirghiz-Kaysak, Bashkir, Kalmyk or Karakalpak militant tribes, who, despite their oath promises to serve Russia faithfully and keep the peace on the border, continued to engage in robbery - thief fishing.
Fig. 4. Orenburg horse and foot Cossacks
Fig. 5. Orenburg Equestrian Cossack Artillery
At the same time there are significant changes in the economy and the life of the Cossacks. Cossack fortresses, towns, outposts, settlements, and guards all lose more and more the features of temporary settlements. The Cossacks really inhabit the areas inhabited by them. The economy of the Cossacks becomes more stable and versatile. The welfare of the Cossacks depended on the size of government salaries, as well as the size of rights and privileges. It should be said that the monetary salary and clothing allowance was very small, at that time did not exceed one and a half rubles per year per Cossack. Although it mattered. For comparison: the annual rent (payment to the landowner or the state) of the average peasant at that time was about two rubles. Therefore, the most important privilege of the Cossacks was his exemption from all taxes (dues) and duties, except for military service. Cossacks are much better than even the Ural and Siberian peasants, were endowed with land and land. Their holdings were 4-8 times the holdings of neighboring peasants. True, in the Urals it was not at that time of significant importance, there was enough land for everyone. Much more important was the quality of plots and the size of rights to use pastures, hunting and fishing grounds of fields, forests, rivers and lakes. Therefore, in reality, the Cossacks lived more prosperously and had better living conditions than the neighboring peasantry. However, the life of the Cossacks, especially the rank and file, can not be painted in pink colors and colors. It was not simple and not easy, because the main duty of the Cossack - military service and defense of the Fatherland was very difficult, troublesome and dangerous. What really Ural Cossack could have income, except salary? There were several of them:
1. Mining, obtained in military campaigns. In case of luck, she could be very significant, especially if the Cossacks managed to capture thoroughbred horses, which were highly valued. Therefore, the seizure of Bashkir, Nogai, Kirghiz-Kaysak, Karakalpak herds was one of the most common types of military industry among the Cossacks. However, the nomads in this in no way inferior to the villagers. Reading the documents about these incidents, it can be said that for those and others it was not only a day-to-day business, but also a kind of sport.
2. An important source of income was agriculture. True, agriculture was at least important, but secondary. His development was hampered by military service, due to which the Cossacks were forced to leave the house for a long time. The development of agriculture restrained the constant military danger from the nomads, who especially willingly attacked those working in the field far from outposts. But animal husbandry, especially the breeding of horses, was well developed. Horticulture was also developing, but mainly to meet family needs. In the southern regions, watermelons and melons were grown in large quantities for sale.
3. One of the main income items of the Cossacks was hunting and fishing, the benefit of fish and game was abundant. For the Cossacks who lived along rivers, fishing was often more profitable than the zipun trips. Cossacks in the most jealous way guarded their privilege - the right of bugren. Only servant Cossacks were allowed to aggravate (retired or not serving this right did not have). “And it so happens that one Cossack who is lucky enough to have from forty to fifty or more sturgeon will catch, and will win twenty or thirty rubles in the same way ...” Commercial fishing was developed not only on Yaik, but also on Miass, Tobol, Iset and other rivers and lakes, which are numerous in these lands.
4. Orenburg Cossacks had the right to engage in crafts. These included: carting, maintenance of fords and carriage, breaking of stone, rafting of wood, beekeeping. The special crafts included the production of wonderful shawls from goat down and Armenian camel hair.
5. Orenburg Cossacks were engaged in trade. The main items of trade were: bread, cattle, leather, oil, lard, fish, salt, factory goods and products.
In general, taking into account these and other incomes, the Cossacks in the Urals were always quite prosperous, especially in comparison with the peasantry of the central provinces of Russia. But this higher standard of living was achieved at the price of constant, very difficult works of the peaceful and military.
Separately, I would like to dwell on the ethnic origins of the new Cossack army. Centuries-old multi-ethnic история and the process of subsequent Russification of the indigenous and natural Russian Cossack troops (Don, Volga, Yaik) was described in detail by Cossack historians and writers and was also touched upon in many articles of the series on the history of Cossacks (http://topwar.ru/22250-davnie-kazachi-predki .html; http://topwar.ru/31291-azovskoe-sidenie-i-perehod-donskogo-voyska-na-moskovskuyu-sluzhbu.html).
But despite this, as well as despite the facts and even his own eyes, the majority of Russian citizens stubbornly believe that the Cossacks are an exclusively Russian phenomenon, mainly because they so want to consider these citizens themselves. In this regard, it is curious to pay attention also to the multi-ethnic character of the troops, which were no longer formed spontaneously, but by government administrative measures. There is no doubt that the main supplier of the fighters to the newly formed army was the Russian ethnos, but the participation of other ethnic groups with their subsequent Russification and recapitalization should not be underestimated. As is well known, popular proverbs and sayings are a concentrated clot of the philosophy of the past. So, the saying "The eye is narrow, the nose is ply, according to the Russian passport - our main people outside the Volga" characterizes the ethnographic situation in the Trans-Volga region, in the Urals and in Siberia. And the Orenburg Cossacks in this matter are not at all an exception.
What are the main ethnic groups participated in the creation of the Orenburg Cossacks?
Almost simultaneously with the Orenburg Cossack army and in its immediate vicinity, the Stavropol Kalmyk Cossack army is being formed. The Kalmyk horde took Russian citizenship back in 1655, and since then has served the kings military service. The Russian government did not interfere in the internal affairs of the Kalmyk uluses, but the Orthodox Church quite actively conducted missionary activity among them. As a result, in 1724, up to 1,500 Kalmyk families (tents) accepted the Orthodox faith. At first, they continued to live in their old places between Tsaritsyn and Astrakhan, but living together with the unbaptized did not go well, "and being baptized with unbaptized Kalmyks in the vicinity have always quarrels between themselves and without that can not live." Kalmyk Khan Donduk Ombo “bothersomely asked” the Russian authorities to remove the baptized Kalmyks from unbaptized. 21 May 1737, by decree of Empress Anna Ioannovna, they were resettled to the Zakamsk defensive line and the city of Stavropol (Volzhsky) was founded. Command and control was arranged according to a Cossack pattern. Later, the Stavropol Kalmyk army was incorporated into the Orenburg Cossack army and relocated to new lines. During the centuries-old cohabitation and service with the Orenburg Cossacks, today, the baptized Kalmyks almost became Russified.
Fig. 6. Group photo of the Orenburg Cossacks of the late XIX century. It is impossible not to pay attention to the diversity of individuals.
Despite the rather frequent uprisings of the Bashkirs and their active participation in the Pugachev riot government, the farther away, the more attracted the Bashkirs to military service and the protection of the border line. The first step in this direction was made by Ivan the Terrible, who attracted the Bashkir detachments to participate in the Livonian War. Peter I, although he feared the Bashkir rebels, widely used their troops in the Northern War. After the suppression of the Bashkir uprising of 1735-1741, the Bashkirs are increasingly attracted to the border service, but they are put in a mixture with more reliable units from the mecheryakov, serving Tatars, Nagaibaks and Cossacks. As this happened, the Bashkirs, by their estate and legal status, are increasingly beginning to converge with the Cossacks. In the 1754 year, the Bashkirs removed the obligation to pay tribute. The tsar's decree directly stated that the Bashkirs "without paying a tribute to the tribute, would be the only servants like the Cossacks." 10 April 1798 was followed by a decree introducing a cantonal control system in Bashkiria, which finally turned the Bashkirs and mescheryaks into a military estate modeled after the Cossacks. Bashkir and Meshcheryak Cossacks, as well as teptyary, were actively attracted to participate in wars and foreign campaigns. In the 1812-1814 years, after Don, the Cossack troops from the Urals were the second largest sent to the front. The 43 regiment sent them to fight Napoleon, including the Bashkir 28. After World War II, several thousand French prisoners of war were enrolled in the Orenburg Cossacks. However, the main task of the Urals was to protect the border line from Tobol to Guriev. In 20-30-s of the XIX century to 70% of the Cossacks on the border line were Bashkirs and Mescheryaks. In general, the Bashkir-Mescheryak army was the largest Cossack army in the Urals by the beginning of the 19th century.
Fig. 7. Bashkir Cossack beginning of the XIX century
In 30-50-s of the XIX century begins the gradual disbandment of the Bashkir-Mescheryak army. Part of the Bashkirs and mecheryakov internal cantons transferred to the Orenburg and Ural troops, others in the tax-paying population. After the end of the Crimean War and the conquest of the Caucasus, internal reforms began in Russia. In the military, they were conducted by the Minister of War Milyutin, some of which concerned the Cossacks. He had the idea of dissolving the Cossacks in the general mass of the Russian people. He prepared and 1 January 1863 of the year sent a note to the troops, which suggested:
- to replace the Cossack general service with a set of eager people who love this business;
- establish free access and exit of people from the Cossack state;
- introduce personal land tenure;
- to distinguish in the Cossack regions a military unit from a civil one, a judicial one from an administrative part, and to introduce the imperial law into judicial proceedings and the judicial system.
On the part of the Cossacks, this reform met with sharp opposition, because in fact it meant the elimination of the Cossacks. The Cossacks indicated to the Minister of War three immutable beginnings of Cossack life:
- public land ownership;
- caste isolation troops;
- The custom of electing and self-government.
Decisive opponents of reforming the Cossacks were many grandees and, above all, Prince Baryatinsky, who had subdued the Caucasus mainly with Cossack sabers. The emperor Alexander II himself did not decide on such a reform of the Cossacks. After all, even 2 of October 1827 of the year (9-years old), he, then the heir and Grand Duke, was appointed ataman of all the Cossack troops. Military atamans became his governors in the Cossack regions. All his childhood, youth and youth were surrounded by Cossacks: uncles, orderlies, orderlies, instructors, trainers and educators. In the end, after many disputes, a letter was declared confirming the rights and privileges of the Cossacks. But the Bashkir-Meshcheryak army failed to defend. The army was abolished according to the highest approved opinion of the State Council "On the transfer of control of the Bashkirs from the military to the civil department" from July 2 of 1865. But a significant part of the Bashkir, Mishar, Nagaibak and Teptyar soldiers by this time was already in the Orenburg army. Most of the descendants of these fighters have now completely become Russified and know about their origin only from family legends.
Fig. 8. Group photo of the beginning of the 20th century Cossacks-Nagaibaks of the village of Paris
At the same time, in places of compact residence in the Chebarkulsky and Nagaybaksky districts of the Chelyabinsk region, descendants of the Cossacks – Nagaibaks (baptized Tatars) have so far preserved bilingualism (they speak Russian and Tatar) and many elements of national culture. But urbanization and industrialization take their toll. The descendants of the Nagaibak Cossacks are sent for permanent residence in the cities, and those living in the diaspora are now practically Russified.
Fig. 9. Sabantuy (plow festival) in the Nagaibak village Paris, Chelyabinsk region in our time
It was in such conditions that the Orenburg Cossack army was formed and became the third largest among the eleven Cossack troops, eleven pearls in the brilliant military crown of the Russian Empire. Until the liquidation of the Cossacks by the Soviet authorities, the Orenburg Cossacks did a lot of noble deeds, but this is a completely different story.
Mamonov V.F. and others. The history of the Cossacks of the Urals. Orenburg, Chelyabinsk, 1992.
Shibanov N.S. Orenburg Cossacks. XVIII — XIX centuries. Chelyabinsk, 2003.
Gordeev A.A. History of the Cossacks.