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Rubricator / / City Administration / Police, Prisons
Alexeevsky Ravelin

ALEXEEVSKY RAVELIN, an outer fortification of Peter and Paul fortress, situated in its western part, before Vasilievskaya curtain wall. The ravelin was named so in honour of Tsar Alexey Mikhaylovich. It was built in 1733-40 (engineer C.A. Munnich, C

Block Supervisors

BLOCK SUPERVISORS, ranks of executive police who headed police blocks in 1782–1867; they were appointed by the Board of Decency and were subordinated to private police officers

Board of Decency

BOARD OF DECENCY, the main provincial (before 1871) and city police institution. It was created in 1782 in the course of the reform of police instead of the Main Police Office


BOOTH-GUARDS, lowest ranks of city police looking after " decency" and cleanliness of streets entrusted to them at the end of the 18th - mid 19th centuries. They were subordinated to the non-commissioned officer of the block

City Guards

CITY GUARDS, the name of the lowest ranks of police holding duty in the streets; the name was used from the first quarter of the 19th century along with the name of booth-guards. After the division of St

District Militia Officers

DISTRICT MILITIA OFFICERS (district commissioners of militia), members of militia of public safety providing social order and preventing crimes on the territory entrusted to them


GENDARMERIE, 1) military police, which secured the rear of the standing army, aiming to prevent marauding and desertion. Gendarmerie was founded by M. B. Barclay de Tolly in 1815

House of Preliminary Detention, prison

HOUSE OF PRELIMINARY DETENTION (25 Shpalernaya Street), the first remand prison in Russia. It was built in 1871-75 (architect K.Y. Maevsky) who took American system as an example: the doors of cells overlooked stepped iron passages; inside the house

Kresty Prison.

KRESTY (Crosses) (5-7 Arsenalnaya Embankment/ 8 Komsomola Street), a colloquial name of St. Petersburg solitary confinement prison. It was built in 1884-90 (architect A.O

Lithuanian Castle.

LITHUANIAN CASTLE (Seven-towered castle), a prison, used to be situated in Kolomna, near the intersection of the Moyka river and Krukov canal. The 2-storeyed building of the palace was built in 1783-87 (architect I.E

Meeting Houses (entry)

MEETING HOUSES (Meeting Yards), offices of private police officers, located in each of 12 police units. With organization in 1802-03 of regular firefighting service, the Meeting Houses also housed fire brigades headed by brand masters


MILITIA, was created by order of the People's Commissariat of Internal Affairs on October, 28 (old style: November, 10) 1917 “On Workers' Militia.” On December, 14 (old style: December

Office of Addresses

OFFICE OF ADDRESSES (from 1839, Address Dispatch Office), was set up in 1809 with the purpose of registration of workers and hired staff coming to St. Petersburg and also with a purpose of preventing people of "inappropriate conduct" from coming to

Passport Offices

PASSPORT OFFICES, institutions issuing passports and registering citizens were created by order of the Central Executive Committee and Soviet of People's Commissariat of the USSR in December

Petrograd Cheka

PETROGRAD CHEKA (Petrograd Emergency Committee), the local body of All-Russian Extraordinary Commission, established on March 10, 1918 after the transfer of All-Russian Extraordinary Commission to Moscow; it was quartered on 2/6 Gorokhovaya Street


POLICE was created in St. Petersburg at the beginning of the 18th century; it was engaged in all the spheres of city life: construction, fire safety, city finances, public institutions, concert and theatre activities, etc

Police Departments

POLICE DEPARTMENTS, 1) city police territorial units uniting several police stations. In 1798 there were 2 police departments in St. Petersburg, with a boundary on the Neva river

Prisons (entry)

PRISONS. The first prison in St. Petersburg (Convict gaol, or Convict yard, until 1732 under the jurisdiction of the Admiralty) was built in 1706 in the area of present-day Truda square

Private Police Officer

PRIVATE POLICE OFFICER, the police position introduced in 1782. Private police officers headed city units, they were subordinated to the Board of Decency and the Chief Policeman

Provincial Gendarme Administration

PROVINCIAL GENDARME ADMINISTRATION of St. Petersburg, the local organ of gendarmerie. It was formed in 1867, after the abolishment of gendarme districts. The administration was located at 8/15 Ochakovskaya Street

Psychiatrical Hospital for Peculiar Cases

PSYCHIATRICAL HOSPITAL FOR PECULIAR CASES was created in 1951 as part of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. It was housed in the building of the former women’s prison (9 Arsenalnaya Street)

Public Safety Volunteer Units

PUBLIC SAFETY VOLUNTEER UNITS, arranged with the purpose of helping militia. Workers' units attached to industrial factories in the period of the Revolution of 1905-07 were a prototype of Public Safety Volunteer Units

Section Guards

SECTION GUARDS, city police officials appointed by two to the sections created by the reform of 1867. One section guard controlled city guards, the other was responsible for preventing crimes

Security Department

SECURITY DEPARTMENT ("Security" in everyday language), the organ of police responsible for political search. It was created in 1866 as "The Department of Peace and Order in the Country" under the auspices of the Governor of St


"SHARASHKI", the name of secret research institutes or design institutions (Special Design Bureau, Technical Bureau, etc.), that functioned in 1931-55 in the system of the Joint State Political Administration Board of the People's Commissariat of

Sobering-up Stations

SOBERING-UP STATIONS. In Autumn 1936 collection of the drunk in the streets by special brigades of militia driving in cars supplied with special equipment became a usual practice in Leningrad

Station Police Officer

STATION POLICE OFFICER, a police rank. It was established in the course of the city police reform of 1866-67. Police blocks were renamed police stations; a block supervisor became a station police officer; and administrations of blocks became

Third Division

THIRD DIVISION of His Majesty's Own office, the supreme state establishment that performed political surveillance and investigation in the country. The office was established on July 3

Trubetskoy Bastion

TRUBETSKOY BASTION, one of 6 bastions of Peter and Paul Fortress, situated in its south-western part. The bastion was built in 1703, of earth and wood under the supervision of prince Y.Y