Started in January 1972 to observe the 50th anniversary of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics establishment, the Kirishi Museum of Local History and Tradition is devoted to the history of the region and its traditional culture and crafts, tatting above all. The museum funds include more than 8 ths. items.
The historical section of the exhibit shows transformation of an old village on the Volkhov water way, once used by traders travelling "from the Varangians to the Greeks", into an industrial town centered around the Kirishi petroleum refinery.
A separate and very impressive section depicts the tragic years of World War II when the town of Kirishi has been occupied by the German troops for almost two years and nothing remained except piles of ruins when it was finally won back.
The ethnographic section of the exhibit contains objects of traditional culture, clothing, footwear, domestic utensils, both functional and well decorated. They date back to the 19th-20th centuries and were acquired in expeditions undertaken in the region or donated by the locals.
The fancy of crafts will have a chance to appreciate the work of lace-makers presented in the special part of the museum exhibition. The local lace design is very distinctive and visitors have an advantage of buying beautiful examples in the museum store or watching the process of tatting on special order.
The Kirishi museum occupies the ground floor of a standard dwelling house, the store in the entrance hall offers historical literature and works by local painters and craftspeople.
The museum also has a separate exhibition hall to house temporary exhibits. Art shows, literary readings and concerts are common here.
42 Lenin Pr., Kirishi, Leningrad region; phones (8268) 236 29, 210 44
11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Closed Mondays and Tuesdays (Sundays and Mondays in summer time)