TROPIN N.A. The Police Chief N.A. Ridinger of the City of Kaluga and the Decembrist G.S. Batenkov: Unknown Letter


Tropin Nikolay Aleksandrovich

Doctor of Sciences (History), Professor, Head of Department of Russian History and Archaeology,

Elets State University named after I.A. Bunin

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Kommunarov St., 28, 399770 Elets, Russian Federation

Abstract. The letter of 1860 by the police chief N.A. Ridinger to the decembrist G.S. Batenkov has been published for the first time in the present article. The letter reflects their friendly relations, and the text of the letter lets suggest the influence of G.S. Batenkov on the development of N.A. Ridinger as a researcher of history and statistics in the Kaluga and Orel provinces. In 1859 N.A. Ridinger publishes five articles about the activities of police and firefighters in “Kaluga province news”. It was his first experience in the sphere of journalism. The peculiarities of N.A. Ridinger journalistic style: didactic tone, frequent phrases about the usefulness of the published information, awkward literary style.

Nikolay Ridinger was a nobleman (1825-1894). His ancestors were in the military service of the Russian emperors. Grandfather Karl Ridinger was governor of the city of Vyborg in 1797-1799. Father Alexander Ridinger distinguished himself in the wars against Napoleon,  and received the rank of Major General. Nikolay Ridinger continued the family tradition and became an officer. He fought in the Caucasus in 1853-1854 as commander of a company of infantry soldiers. He was wounded twice and awarded with the Order. Since 1857, Nikolay Ridinger became chief of police in the city of Kaluga. There he met Gavrila Batenkov.

Gavrila Batenkov came from the nobility (1793-1863). He was an active participant in the uprising of nobles – the Decembrists in Saint Petersburg (1825). After the defeat of the uprising he was in the prison fortress and he was exiled to Siberia. Batenkov was pardoned in 1856 and came to live in the city of Kaluga. 

N. Ridinger perceived G. Batenkov as a father. In August 1859 he started his service as a police chief in the city of Orel. On December 12, 1860 N. Ridinger wrote a letter to G. Batenkov.

Key words: police chief of Kaluga, decembrist, Kaluga province, Nikolay Ridinger, Gavrila Batenkov, Orel region study.

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The Police Chief N.A. Ridinger of the City of Kaluga and the Decembrist G.S. Batenkov: Unknown Letter by Tropin N.A. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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