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You can see them on the website of the Moscow Main Archive in the “Unique documents” section.

Main Archive of Moscow stores millions of documents related to the history of the capital and its inhabitants. Most of them are materials from the second half of the 18th century to the present day. The documents are of historical value, but some of them are especially valuable, which can be viewed online on the department’s website in the section “Unique documents”.

16 documents created before 1917 are included in the State Register of Unique Documents of the Moscow Archive Fund. Five of them are also included in the State Register of Unique Documents of the Archive Fund of the Russian Federation – these are birth and marriage books of Alexander Pushkin, the birth of Mikhail Lermontov and Fyodor Dostoevsky, and the death of Nikolai Gogol.

The record of the birth of Alexander Pushkin can be found in the metric book of the Epiphany Cathedral in Yelokhov. The entry indicates the house where the poet was born. Also in the Glavarkhiv there is a register of births of the Ascension Church on Tsaritsynskaya Street (today – the Church of the Ascension of the Lord “Big Ascension” at the Nikitsky Gate) with a record of the wedding of Alexander Pushkin with Natalia Goncharova. A unique document autographed by Alexander Pushkin is a broker’s book with the text of an employment agreement for the poet before marriage at a house in the parish of the Life-Giving Trinity Church on Arbat.

The archival department also stores the birth register of the Church of the Three Great Hierarchs at the Red Gate for 1814, with a record of the birth of Mikhail Lermontov. From the document you can learn that the godmother of Mikhail Lermontov was “the dowager lady of the guards, the warrant officer Elisaveta Alekseevna Arsenyeva” – his mother’s grandmother, who later devoted her whole life to her grandson.

Of interest is the metric book of the Church of Peter and Paul at the Mariinsky Hospital for 1821 with the registration record of the birth of Fyodor Dostoevsky. The father of the writer Mikhail Dostoevsky served as a doctor in it.

Recently, a previously unknown autograph of Nikolai Gogol was discovered – he signed as a recipient in the birth certificate of his godson Nikolai Khomyakov: “I testify that the record is correct: Nikolai Vasilyevich Gogol, the recipient of a newborn of the eighth grade.” The birth register of the Church of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker on the Sands with this entry was also included in the register of unique documents.

Preserved and two documents related to the life of Nikolai Karamzin, the author of the “History of the Russian State”. This is a record of the marriage search (a record with information about the bride and groom, which was made before the wedding) and the record of the marriage of Nikolai Karamzin with his second wife Ekaterina Kolyvanova in 1804. This marriage marked the beginning of a new stage in the life and work of Nikolai Karamzin, therefore the preserved records in the marriage search book and the birth register of the Antipius church in Kolymazhny yard are especially interesting.

Fans of military history, as well as Russian poetry, will be interested in the act record of the birth in 1784 of the hero of the Patriotic War of 1812, poet Denis Davydov. It can be found in the register of the church in the name of the icon of the Mother of God “Burning Bush” near the Maiden Field.

In addition, the birth records of Nikolai Pirogov, Sergei Soloviev, Boris Pasternak, the marriage record of Anton Chekhov and Olga Knipper, as well as the music manuscript of Dmitry Shostakovich can be viewed online.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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