Chuvashia Republic overview
Chuvashia Republic (other spellings Chuvashiya, Chuvash) is a federal subject of the Russian Federation, part of the Volga Federal District. Administrative center of the region is Cheboksary. Chuvashia Republic is the native land of Chuvash people.
Chuvashia Republic population - 1,243,000 (2012); land area - 18,343 sq. km.
Chuvashia Republic facts
Located in the center of European Russia (Volga-Vyatka region, between Kazan and Nizhny Novgorod cities) the republic is in the list of most densely populated regions of Russia.
The largest cities and towns of Chuvashia are Cheboksary (460,000), Novocheboksarsk (127,000), Kanash (45,000), Alatyr (38,000), Shumerlya (32,000).
Main natural resources of the region are clays, gypsums, sands, peat, phosphorite.
Chuvashia Republic history
There are several hypotheses of the origin of Chuvash people. Most scientists follow the next theory. The ancestors of the Chuvash in antiquity lived in Central Asia region. They were nomadic herdsmen that began embracing agricultural labor. For the first time they were mentioned in written sources in the 4th-3rd centuries BC under the names of the Bulgarians and Suvar people.
The centuries-old communications of Chuvash people ancestors with the Scythians, Saka, Sarmatians and Alans nations (the followers of ancient Indo-Iranian civilization) enriched the culture of the Bulgarians and Suvar - their economic activities, daily life, religion, clothing, hats, jewelry, ornaments.
In 1236, Volga Bulgaria state was devastated by Mongols led by Batu Khan. Some people moved to the central and northern parts of the territory of present day Chuvashia. In 1438, Kazan Khanate broke away from the Golden Horde. Kazan Khanate included besides Tatars the ancestors of the Chuvash, Mari, Mordovians, Udmurt and Bashkir people.
By the end of the 15th century, Chuvash nation that kept the Bulgarian language and culture formed on the territory of present day Chuvashia. At the end of the 1546, Chuvash and mountain Mari rebels called for help of the Russian troops in their fighting with Kazan Khanate. In the summer of 1551, with the foundation of the Russian city of Sviyazhsk the territories of mountain Chuvash people were joined to the Russian state.
Chuvashia Republic sceneries
Chuvashia republic scenery
After the fall of Kazan in 1552, Chuvash people that lived on the meadow side also joined the Russian state. By becoming the part of Russia, Chuvash people could save themselves as a nation.
Several fortified settlements were built on the territory of Chuvashia: Cheboksary (first mentioned in chronicles in 1469, founded as a fortress in 1555), Alatyr, Tsivilsk, Yadrin. The fortified towns soon became an important trade and craft centers of the region. The people of the region were busy in agriculture, animal husbandry, bee-keeping. Main industries included the processing of wood, leather and wool.
In the 19th century, especially after the abolition of serfdom, capitalism began to develop in Chuvashia region. However, in comparison with the central regions of Russia, this process was much slower.
In the late 19th - early 20th centuries, there were about 30 factories with about 6 thousand people employed. The vast majority of the population of Chuvashia (about 96%) lived in rural areas. The population of Chuvashia increased from 436 thousand in 1859 to 660 thousand in 1897.
June 24, 1920, Chuvash Autonomous Region was established, and April 21, 1925, it was transformed into Chuvash Autonomous Republic. In June 1925, Alatyr city also became the part of the Republic. In 1929-1936, the region was the part of Nizhny Novgorod (from 1932 - Gorky) krai.
In 1950-1980ies, the average annual growth rate of total industrial output of Chuvashia Republic was ahead of all-Russian. In 1970, the construction of Cheboksary hydroelectric station began and in 1972 - Cheboksary Tractor Plant.
About 80% of all regional industry was concentrated in two main cities Cheboksary and Novocheboksarsk. In rural areas the industry was represented mainly by small enterprises of food and woodworking industries.
Intensive growth of industry led to significant migration of rural population to the cities, especially to Cheboksary (the capital of the republic). The gradual removal of Chuvash language of the educational process has led to the loss of basic literacy of a majority of the language speakers. A lot of Chuvash people preserved only the ability to explain on native language on the domestic level.
In 1992, Chuvash Republic was formed and approved by the first President of Russia Boris Yeltsin.
Chuvashia Republic economics
Chuvashia Republic is an important center of Russian electrical engineering (power transmission and controls systems). Also such industries as chemical, electricity generation, metalworking are highly developed.
The region has well-developed transport system with numerous roads (Federal Highways M7, P178, A151), railroads and waterways (the Volga, Sura rivers).