Velizh [C] Burials of the Executed | Russia's Necropolis of Terror and the Gulag

Velizh [C] Burials of the Executed



Date of burial
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Smolensk Region Velizh district, Velizh
Access outside a populated area
Public transport
Private or specialised transport
8 kms southeast of Velizh.
Visiting Hours or Restrictions
Type of burial
Secret interment of executed
Current use
Ceremonial events
Presence of memorials, etc.
Protected status
Not protected

Information provided in 1995 by the Smolensk Region FSK (predecessor of the FSB) indicates that 468 people were shot in Velizh between 1928 and the conclusion of the Great Terror late in 1938: the details came from execution reports preserved in the archives. The shootings took place some distance from the town at the Semyonovsky summer dacha in the Semichovsky Grove.

On 1 May 2006, near the Velizh-Selezni Road next to the edge of the Semichovsky Grove, parishioners from the church of the three Holy Hierarchs erected a commemorative cross. Later unidentified persons added a memorial to their dead relative next to the cross. Each spring the congregation of the church processes with crosses, holy banners and icons to the memorial.

Books of Remembrance

A Book in Remembrance of the Victims of Political Repression: the Smolensk Martyrology (7 vols. 2001-2008) contains biographical entries on 26,300 who were shot or sent to the Gulag.

DateNature of ceremoniesOrganiser or responsible personParticipantsFrequency
2nd Sunday after (Orthodox) Easter
Procession with crosses and banners to the memorial cross on the feast of the three Marys
Church of the Three Holy Hierarchs
Congregation of the church
Annual event
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 Velizhsky district administration. The memorial is cared for by parishioners of the Church of the Three Holy Hierarchs
Sources and bibliography

[ Original texts & hyperlinks ]

Velizh Museum, official website [retrieved, 29 May 2022]

“Conclusions of Smolensk Region FSK on verifying mass burials of the victims of political repression …, 31 January 1995”, Herald of the Katyn memorial, (No 7) 2007

G.A. Andreyenkova, “Monuments and memorials to the victims of political repression, erected in the Smolensk Region”, Herald of the Katyn memorial, No 9, 2009

Reply by the Velizh district administration (№ 1111 of 16 May 2014) to a formal enquiry by RIC Memorial (St Petersburg)