SVOBODA AND THE KURSK BATTLE MONUMENTS
Svoboda (meaning freedom) was for years after World War Two known as the headquarters of Marshal Rokossovsky, one of the commanders in the Kursk battle. Today there is a memorial complex here devoted to him and his men.
While tourists were brought to this site, however, their Soviet-era guides carefully avoided mention of the nearby Korennaya Pustyn monastery. Now the monastery is back on the map, and working again. The old monastery orchard is in the back of the museum area.
Today the monastery is under restoration, its main Cathedral of the Nativity of the Virgin, built by Konstantin Thon (of Kremlin and Church of Christ the Savior fame). It's looking festive again. At the bottom of the hill are holy springs, and the Tuskar River. Now this monastery with its wonderful springs is a place of pilgrimage for religious people.
Every year on the Victory Day, the 9th of May and on the day of the Kursk battle, the 5th of July, the museum workers organize the veterans reunion. The war veterans and their relatives come to Kursk from all over Russia. The cresset parades are being held on those days. Traditionally the war veterans meet the young generation. Young soldiers give their military oath at the museum.
More than 25 thousand people visit inside the museum annually. The honorable guests register book tells about the famous guests. In different times the museum was visited by the former member of the Military council of the Central front lieutenant-general K. F. Telegin, now retired; the commander of the 65th army general of the army, twice awarded by the Hero of the Soviet Union order, P. I. Batov; I. N. Kozhedub, three times awarded by the Hero of the Soviet Union order; the grandson of K.K. Rokossovsky - Konstantin Vilyevich Rokossovsky; the adjutant of K.K.Rokossovsky since 1957 B. N. Zakchatsky; the driver of the commander S. I. Moszhulchin; the son of the Marshal of the engineer troops A. I. Proshlyakov - B. A. Proshlyakov and many others.
On the 20th anniversary of the debacle of the nazi-fascists troops on the Kursk curve K.K.Rokossovsky leading the delegation of the Military Ministry of the USSR came to the Kursk region and visited the Svoboda settlement.
Drive from the Kursk Severnaya Bus Station
The Museum is open Daily from 10:00am till 7:00pm
Except for Mondays and last Thursday of every month
The address of the museum:
Ul. Lunacharskogo, # 6
Phones: (0712-2)2-64-74 (the director) or (0712-2)2-62-75 (security)
Drive to the museum by all kinds of the public transportation to the „RKrasnaya Ploschad„S stop. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m. except Fridays and Thursday of every month.
The Historical Memorial Museum - Head Quarter of the Central Front
On the 5th of August 1973 the memorial complex was opened in the Svoboda settlement in 30 kilometers from Kursk. The event was devoted to the 30th anniversary of the Kursk battle. On the 9th of May it was reorganized into the military-historical museum „RThe Central front HQ„S.
In 1943 the Central front HQ was located here. From this place the front commander general Konstantin Konstantinovich Rokossovsky lead the army during the Kursk battle. He stayed in this HQ day and night during the battle. Later he wrote in his „RThe soldier„Ss duty„S book of memoirs: „ROnly thanks to the fact that I never left the headquarters, I managed to follow the battle development, the development of the events at the front, to adequately react to the situation changes„S.
T-34 Tank & Rokossovsky
The blindage of K.K.Rokossovsky is located on the territory of the museum complex. The blindage was reconstructed according to the drawings of the former commander of the army engineers troops A. I. Proshlyakov. The blindage has a secretary room, a working room and a room for rest.
There is a bust of K.K.Rokossovsky in the park surrounding the museum. Near to it there is a stele with memorial boards containing the parts and units of the Central front. The military equipment of the Great Patriotic War is exposed over there.
It should be specially mentioned that the museum complex territory presents a beautiful garden-park with the total area of 7 hectares, it has the status of natural monument.
Exposition & Exhibitions
The exposition of the historical-military museum gives to its visitors detailed information concerning the work and ranges of the military-strategic activity of the Headquarter during the Kursk battle. The exposition is divided into the following parts:
The museum foundation history; Liberation of the Zolotukchinsky region and the Svoboda settlement from the nazi-fascists invaders;
A body of the Military council of the Central front;
The participation of the representatives of the Supreme General Headquarter in military operations preparation;
The structure of the command post and the front;
The work of the headquarter and operating department at the preparation and launching the Kursk battle;
There are also sections devoted to the 120th special mechanized engineer battalion, the observation unit, the 394th engineer division of special designatio;
The detailed information about communication control, engineer, artillery, logistic, medical, ambulance and political provision of the front is given in this section;
The battle map of the Kursk combat is presented here, too; Various arms models are exposed here.
The personal belongings of K.K.Rokossovsky, presented to the museum by his relatives, are carefully kept over there. Among them are a greatcoat, a shoulder-belt, a note pad with his notes concerning the Kursk action, a trunk, pictures, books. The personal things, diaries, letters, orders and medals of the soldiers and officers, participants of the Kursk battle are also exposed in this section of the museum. Numerous materials stress the historical meaning of this combat, its range and breadth
New exhibitions had been organized at the museum recently: Memorial places of the Kursk battle; The combat history of the military operators of the Central front; The intelligence officers of the Central front; The Great Patriotic War relics; The people„Ss marshal„S.
6015 items, 4737 of which belong to the main stocks, are kept at the museum. The most interesting of the new items of the last years are the personal things of the Soviet Union Marshal K.K.Rokossovsky, the Engineer Troops Marshal A. I. Proshlyakov, the material about K.K.Rokossovsky, presented by his senior adjutant B. N. Zakchatsky, the personal things of major-general G. M. Oryel, the honors of S. I. Moszhukchin, K. K. Rokossovsky„Ss driver during the Kursk battle.