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Entries / Benckendorff A. K. (1781-1844), statesman

Benckendorff A. K. (1781-1844), statesman

Categories / Capital/Personalia
Categories / Army. Navy/Personalia
Categories / Tsarskoe Selo and town of Pushkin. The digital chronological reference book/Pushkin personality

BENCKENDORFF (v. Benckendorff) Alexander Khristoforovich (Konstantin Alexander Karl Wilhelm Christopher) (1781, St. Petersburg 1844), Count (1832), statesman and military officer, Infantry General, Cavalry General (1829), honorary member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1827). Brought up and educated in the boarding school of abbot C.D. Nicholas. From 1798 was on military service, took part in the Russo-Prusso-French War (1806-07) and Russo-Turkish War (1809-11). At the time of the Patriotic War of 1812 and campaigns of 1813-14 commanded an independent cavalry detachment, operating at the enemy rear. In 1814 appointed Brigade Commander, in 1816 - Division Commander, in 1819 — Chief of Staff of the Guards Corps. In the 1810s became a mason, and member of the St.Petersburg Masonic Lodge "United Friends". His conduct during the disorders in the Semenovsky Life Guards Regiment (1820) caused the displeasure of Emperor Alexander I, who disregarded his memorandum on secret societies and the organisation of secret police (1821). Appointed Division Commander in 1821. From 10 November 1824 to 14 March 1825 served as acting Military Governor of Vasilievsky Island, was in charge of the recovery and rebuilding of this district after a devastating flood on 7 November 1824. Exerted himself in suppressing the insurrection on the Senate Square 14 December 1825, member of the Investigation Commission on the case of Decembrists, from then onwards enjoyed confidence and favour of Emperor Nicholas I. In June 1826 was appointed Gendarme Chief, initiator of establishment and Chief of the Third Section of His Imperial Majesty's Own Chancellery (secret police), from December 1826, senator, and from 1831, member of the State Assembly and the Cabinet of Ministers. Despite the common misconception, Benckendorff took little interest in the activities of secret police, leaving it to his subordinates. In 1839 was elected honorary member and trustee of Demidov's Charity House for Workers. From 1841, chairman of the Committee of the Prison Welfare Society. From 1842, chairman of the Building Commission for Construction of the St. Petersburg - Moscow Railroad. In 1831-44, patron of St. Catherine's Lutheran Community in St. Petersburg. One of the founders, and, from 1835, chairman of the board of the Second Russian Fire Insurance Society and Life Insurance Society. In St. Petersburg resided in the house of Baron Chabeaut on Fontanka River Embankment, later in a state apartment in the house of Gendarme Chief (10 Panteleymonovskaya Street). He left behind him his personal papers (some of which have been published).

Work: Benckendorff's notes: 1812 Patriotic War. 1813 Liberation of the Netherlands. Moscow, 2001.

References: Олейников Д. И. Александр Христофорович Бенкендорф // Российские консерваторы. М., 1997. С. 63-94.

D. N. Shilov.

Alexander I, Emperor
Benckendorff Alexander Krristoforovich
Nicholas I, Emperor
Nicolle Charles Domenique
the Demidovs

Fontanka River Embankment/Saint Petersburg, city
Pestelya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 10

Олейников Д. И. Александр Христофорович Бенкендорф // Российские консерваторы. М., 1997
Записки Бенкендорфа: 1812 г. Отеч. война. 1813 г. Освобождение Нидерландов. М., 2001

The subject Index
Russian Academy of Sciences
Guards Corps Staff
Semenovsky Life Guards Regiment
Decembrist Revolt of 1825
Chancellery, His Imperial Majesty's Personal