Russia part II - Back in the USSR


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Europe » Russia » Northwest » Kola Peninsula » Murmansk
July 2nd 2008
Published: July 6th 2008
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Murmansk Coat of ArmsMurmansk Coat of ArmsMurmansk Coat of Arms

Murmansk Coat of Arms with the addition of a few communist symbols

Communist Symbols



I have a soft spot for communist symbols, communist statues, Lenin statues etc. I don't like what they stand for, but I like the way they look. One reason for that is probably that you can take excellent photos of them, and I like to take photos.

In the years prior to the fall of the Soviet Union people in the communist world were to be constantly reminded of how great a system communism is and so on. Therefore every town had a Lenin statue, there were always a few streets in each town named after Lenin and Karl Marx, statues of war heroes dotted the cities and on city walls you could find plaques conmemorating communist leaders or a visit by Lenin or something. The symbol of hammer and sickle was to be found everywhere. Sometimes even entire cities were named after a former leader, like Karl-Marx-Stadt, Stalingrad and Leningrad.

This was going on not only in the Soviet Union. The situation was similar in all of the Eastern Bloc. When the communist system eventually collapsed in the late 80-ies and early 90-ies there were different ways to deal with these communist symbols and statues and everything else.
Plaque with Lenin picturePlaque with Lenin picturePlaque with Lenin picture

Plaque with Lenin picture


In many countries they pulled down the statues that symbolised the hated communist system and threw them away. They wanted a fresh start and didn't want to be reminded of the past.

Leningrad was renamed and is today known as St Petersburg.

Karl-Marx-Stadt was renamed and is today known as Chemnitz.

Stalingrad was renamed and is today known as Volgograd.

In many cities the streets were renamed. However, that has caused some confusion because now people tend to use both names and thereby effectively making a lot of streets having two names. One official and one inofficial.

In Budapest in Hungary they pulled down the statues but put them back up in an open air museum. A similar park can be found in Grutas not far from Vilnius in Lithuania.

In Belarus they liked everything the way it was so nothing has changed. If you want to get a glipse of the Soviet Union, go to Belarus!

Also in the Kola Peninsula they seem to like things the way they were. I can't compare with the situation before 1991 but in Murmansk they have kept a lot of the statues and Lenin Avenue is still
Lenin StatueLenin StatueLenin Statue

The Lenin Statue in Murmansk
named Lenin Avenue and Karla Marx Street has not been renamed either. It is also clear that at least some of the old plaques are being maintained. I saw signs that clearly have been painted in the last two or three years.

Well, I am not going to write any more text for this entry on the blog. Instead I let the photo do the talking. So look at the pictures and go Back in the USSR


Additional photos below
Photos: 19, Displayed: 19


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Lenin picture on a wallLenin picture on a wall
Lenin picture on a wall

Lenin looks down from this wall
Prospekt LeninaProspekt Lenina
Prospekt Lenina

Lenin Avenue. They have not changed the names on the streets in Murmansk
Ulitsa Karla MarxaUlitsa Karla Marxa
Ulitsa Karla Marxa

Karl Marx Street. They have not changed the names on the streets in Murmansk
To the Heros of the Soviet UnionTo the Heros of the Soviet Union
To the Heros of the Soviet Union

This monument is dedicated to one or another kind of heros of the Soviet Union
To the Heros of the Soviet Union To the Heros of the Soviet Union
To the Heros of the Soviet Union

This monument is dedicated to one or another kind of heros of the Soviet Union
Painting with communist symbolsPainting with communist symbols
Painting with communist symbols

The house walls are painted with hammer and sickle symbol
Painting with communist symbols Painting with communist symbols
Painting with communist symbols

The house walls are painted with hammer and sickle symbol
Welcome plaque 1Welcome plaque 1
Welcome plaque 1

This plaque welcomes visitors arriving by car
Welcome plaque 2Welcome plaque 2
Welcome plaque 2

This plaque welcomes visitors arriving by car
Welcome plaque 3Welcome plaque 3
Welcome plaque 3

This plaque welcomes visitors arriving by car
Welcome plaque 4Welcome plaque 4
Welcome plaque 4

This plaque welcomes visitors arriving by car
Welcome plaque 5Welcome plaque 5
Welcome plaque 5

This plaque welcomes visitors arriving by car
Lenin picture on the wallLenin picture on the wall
Lenin picture on the wall

In the former train station in Kirovsk there is a Lenin picture on the wall. Just above the door. You can barely see it.
Lenin Statue Lenin Statue
Lenin Statue

The Lenin Statue in Apatity
To the Heros of the Soviet UnionTo the Heros of the Soviet Union
To the Heros of the Soviet Union

This monument is dedicated to one or another kind of heros of the Soviet Union. The monument has a hammer and a sickle at the top
Lenin picture on the wall Lenin picture on the wall
Lenin picture on the wall

In Apatity there is a Lenin picture on the wall


26th January 2009

communist monuments
The one with the anchor is the monument to the Krasin icebreaker that sank in 1930's, the hand with a globe is the monument to the victims of the WWII and the tall structure with the Soviet Navy flag is dedicated to the Soviet Navy, i.e. its Northern Fleet. I was born and raised in Murmansk and I really like your blog. You speak plain and hit the nail right on the head. Cheers!
26th January 2009

Thanks for the info
Thank you for adding som information about the photos. I am also very glad you enjoyed reading it. Makes me a little proud actually...
12th December 2009

Ake! Very beautiful and interesting photos. Each photo small masterpiece ! It was especially interesting to look at photos of Murmansk )))) I live in Murmansk, but you to me on many things "have opened eyes")))

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