Nizhny Kulai ss** Graveyard | Russia's Necropolis of Terror and the Gulag

Nizhny Kulai ss** Graveyard



Date of burial
Show Map
Omsk Region, Tara district, Nizhny Kulai clearing
Access outside a populated area
Private or specialised transport
130 kms northeast of Tara.
Visiting Hours or Restrictions
Type of burial
Deportees’ graveyard
Current use
Burial ground and/or commemorative site
Presence of memorials, etc.
Protected status
Not protected
Фотография 2008 года. Источник:
Фотография 2008 года. Источник:

In 1930 thousands of families of dekulakized Siberian peasants were forcibly resettled in the Kulai clearing among the Vasyugan marshes. They were deported as “second-category” kulaks in response to the secret 1 January 1930 resolution of the Communist Party Politburo.

The first group to arrive in March 1930 numbered 8,891, according to the documents of the Kulai commandant’s office: the office then was responsible for 22 settlements. Mortality among the settlers was high during the 1930s and they were buried in the forest near to the settlement to which they were attached. The numbers of men, women and children buried there have not been established; name lists are not available. The regime limiting the settlers’ movements was lifted in 1947 and after the last inhabitants left the settlement in the 1960s the cemetery was abandoned.

The first commemorative sign in Nizhny Kulai was put up in August 1990 by a youth expedition from Omsk: a simple board fixed to a tree, it read “To the innocent victims of Stalinist repression”. In 2000, an archaeological team found traces of settlements and crosses in the graveyards and made a topographic map of the area. In August 2004, during a pilgrimage organised by the Omsk-Tara Diocese, Father Anatoly (Ledenev) from the village of Vassis in the Tara district discovered a churchyard in woodland with five surviving crosses. Three bore barely distinguishable inscriptions: those buried in the cemetery had died between 1939 and 1964. In August 2008 Father Anatoly erected a commemorative cross there.

Books of Remembrance

In all 17 volumes of Remembrance have so far been issued in the Omsk Region.

11 appeared in alphabetical sequence as Victims of Political Repression in the Omsk Region (2000-2004); they include biographical entries for 30,857 individuals. Five volumes provide biographical entries on 15,000 families in Peasant Golgotha: the Repression of the Peasantry in the Omsk Region (2013-2015).

Involuntary Siberians: Deportees to the Omsk Region (2017) is the latest volume in the series.

Nature of area requiring preservation
State of burialsAreaBoundaries
have not survived
not determined
not delineated
Administrative responsibility and ownership, informal responsibility for the site
On land under the control of the Tara district
Sources and bibliography

[ Original texts & hyperlinks ]

I.V. Cherkasyanova, “Documents of the Kulai commandant’s office”, Omsk conference, marking the city’s 275th anniversary, Omsk, 1991

S.A. Krasilnikov, The Sickle and the Monster: Peasant exile in West Siberia during the 1930s, Moscow, 2009 (334 pp)

M.A. Sbitneva (ed.), The Peasant Golgotha: A book in remembrance of the Omsk Region’s repressed peasantry, two volumes, Omsk, 2013 (528 & 330 pp)


“Nizhny Kulai special settlement cemetery”, Virtual Museum of the Gulag [retrieved, 28 May 2022]

Reply from the Tara urban district administration (№ 14/ТRS-421 of 08 April 2014) to a formal enquiry by RIC Memorial (St Petersburg)