Address

Verkhnya Khortytsia, Zaporizhzhia

About the place

The cemetery is located in the north-eastern part of the island of Khortytsia, in the upper reaches of the Hannivka (Dovha) beam, in the center of the modern cemetery.

In order to quickly populate the lands of the south, the tsarist government drew attention to the possibility of using foreign immigrants. The resettlement wave in the history of the Zaporizhzhia region began in the late 80s of the 18th century when the government of Catherine II in 1786 invited the Mennonites (representatives of one of the Protestant sects that arose in Europe back in the 16th century) to Russia, who suffered from the oppression of the Prussian government.

The colony on the island was founded in 1789. Here, on the island of Khortytsia, 18 families of Mennonite Germans from the city of Danzig arrived. The colonists were granted a number of benefits: 65 acres of land were given for each person, the family received 500 krb. On the economy, the Germans were forever exempted from military service and for 30 years from taxes.

The cemetery, founded by the colonists, was used until 1916, until the moment when the colony ceased to exist.

Today, about 40 tombstones have been preserved, most of which are concentrated in the middle of the modern cemetery. All preserved tombstones can be divided into several types: the earliest, representing granite steles without decoration with inscriptions, dating from the first half of the 19th century and contain several names. And the second type: monuments of the second half of the 19th century carved from limestone or cast. The plates are rectangular in shape with a hemispherical upper edge, sometimes with corner ledges with Gothic-style inscriptions. You can still read them on tombstones.

An anchor is carved on separate monuments in the upper part of the stele. But the tombstone of Rotarma Hildebrandt has the appearance of an open Bible, which is laid on a special curbstone. The pages are carved with lines of holy scripture. Together, the tombstone was a cross, but only the lower part of it was preserved.

As a result of the active use of the cemetery in the 20th century most burials have been completely lost as a result of new burials. Many tombstones have traces of damage, but still remain interesting historical sights.
 

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