The President of the Russian Geographical Society Sergey Shoigu visited the exhibition at the National Center for State Defence Control. Interesting finds from the expeditions of the Russian Geographical Society and the Ministry of Defence of Russia, historical military equipment, unique documents and much more were displayed there.
Out of 21 stands, nine are dedicated to the joint projects of the Russian Geographical Society and the Ministry of Defence. A separate stand was prepared by the Underwater Research Center of the Russian Geographical Society, dedicated to, among other things, a unique project in the Black Sea during which the motor ship "Armenia" was discovered.
The polar explorers' chess set, fragments of a boat and sleigh, dishes and cartridges, old coins from the times of Ivan the Terrible and lanterns immediately attracted the attention of Sergey Shoigu. These artifacts were found during the expeditions of the Russian Geographical Society and the Northern Fleet within the framework of the project "The Main Face of Russia. History, Events, People". The exhibition includes items found in the summer of 2020 during the Complex Expedition to the Arctic Archipelagos. One team, on the sea tug MB-12, reconstructed the 1910 route of Vladimir Rusanov. The second expeditionary team, on the icebreaker "Ilya Muromets", reconstructed the route of Baron von Toll’s the expedition of 1900-1902. The relics found by the members of the expedition are truly historical. Among them is a signed wooden cross, with which the polar explorers under the leadership of Georgy Sedov in 1913 marked the route of their advance across Novaya Zemlya, pea sausage and a cognac barrel that was used by the 1872 Austro-Hungarian expedition of Julius Payer and Karl Weyprecht to store bread from the food depot.
“The central stand displays a female Old Believer cross found in Matochkin Shar, Novaya Zemlya, where the first expedition of Fyodor Rozmyslov wintered in 1768,” says the head of the first expeditionary team Sergey Zinchenko about the expedition. “The cross is very interesting. A crucifix is preserved on one side, and inscriptions on the other. How did it get there? Was this cross given as a talisman to one of the travelers by a wife or a girlfriend, or was there a woman on this expedition? Unfortunately, we don't know yet. Almost all documents and maps on Rozmyslov's expedition are considered lost.”
The exhibition also tells about the joint expeditions of the Russian Geographical Society and the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation to the Kuril Islands; about the circumnavigation on the ships of the Hydrographic Service of the Russian Navy dedicated to the 200th anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica; about the study of the Scythian kurgan Tunnug and many others.
“The Russian Geographical Society has always worked closely with the Ministry of Defence. In recent years, we have conducted several dozen joint expeditions,” says the Deputy Executive Director of the Russian Geographical Society Sergey Korlykhanov. “Both the Ministry of Defence and the Russian Geographical Society work in the most inaccessible places in the country: they are exploring the Arctic and the Kuril Islands, the World Ocean and Siberia. It is not surprising that as a result of this symbiosis our scientists make discoveries and learn new things about our land.”