"The Monument to City Founders" Top 5 Page for this destination Odessa Things to Do Tip by om_212

Odessa Things to Do: 161 reviews and 311 photos


The monument to the City Founders or as it is often called, the Monument to the Empress Catharine IIwas erected in 1900 to commemorate the city?s centennial. The monument depicts Catharine II, surrounded by François de Wollant, the city engineer, Jose de Ribas, the city gouverner who turned Odesa into a sea port, Platon Zubov and Grigoriy Potemkin, Catharine's favorites, who I am sure also had their significant input in the city?s development. In 1920, the monument was dismantled and sent to the local history museum. At some point, they even wanted to melt the statues into projectiles, but the imperial nature of the monument didn?t fit to the proletariat weapons. Eventually, the monument was replaced by another one, to Karl Marx, which was very much dislike and often vandalized. In 1965, Karl Marx was replaced by the monument to Potemkin's marines.

The reestablishment of the monument in 2007 created a lot of controversy. From one side, there were residents of Odessa, who wanted to bring back the historic monument that had been dismantled after the revolution. From the other side, there were Ukrainian patriots, who were against honoring the person, who abolished the Zaporizhian Sich (Ukrainian Cossacks Republic) thus destroying the leftovers of Ukrainian Independence. nevertheless, the monument is back to its original place and enjoys tourist attention even more than before.

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  • Updated Sep 9, 2010
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