SVOBODNY* Burials of executed Bamlag prisoners | Russia's Necropolis of Terror and the Gulag

SVOBODNY* Burials of executed Bamlag prisoners



Date of burial
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Amur Region, Svobodny, old city cemetery
Access in a populated area
Public transport
On foot
Visiting Hours or Restrictions
Type of burial
Secret interment of executed
Current use
Cultural and/or educational purposes
Presence of memorials, etc.
Protected status
Not protected
Фотофиксация 2012 года
Фотофиксация 2012 года

From 1932 onwards Bamlag, the Baikal-Amur camp complex, was administered from Svobodny (lit. “Freetown”). By the beginning of 1933 it held 31,000 prisoners and on 1 January 1938 the total number of inmates reached 201,000. During the Great Terror (1937-1938) executed Bamlag prisoners were buried in the town cemetery. The total number has not been established nor is it known whether they were shot there or elsewhere and then brought to the cemetery for burial. No one was buried there in later years.

In March 2012, after a fire at the cemetery, numerous human remains were found. Some of the skulls bore bullet holes. These remains were gathered together and reburied at the camp cemetery in Svobodny, on a hill next to the memorial to the “Innocent victims of Bamlag”. Staff at the town cemetery say that skulls with bullet holes are to be found in various parts of the grounds. The area where the executed were buried does not have a separate monument.

Books of Remembrance

The Book of Remembrance for the Amur Region consists of 11 volumes, published between 2001 and 2015.

Six volumes offer biographical notes on 17,000 victims of arrest, imprisonment and execution. Two volumes provide brief entries on 7,269 “forced settlers” in the Region (1920s-1950s).

Three further volumes cover: Women in the Amur Region; the Tragedy of the Kosmodemyanovka village; and the History of Political Repression in the Novoalexandrovka village.

Nature of area requiring preservation
State of burialsAreaBoundaries
Have not survived
not established
not delineated
Administrative responsibility and ownership, informal responsibility for the site
On land under the control of the Svobodny urban district administration