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The 1842 Creation of Kovno Guberniya Changed the Borders of the Vilna Guberniya and Grodno Guberniya

by Ellen Sadove Renck

A December 18, 1842 Royal Edict reorganized the northwestern Russian Empire and created the Kovno Guberniya.  That reorganization effected the Vilna and Grodno gubernii. The northern uezds of Vilna Guberniya (Novoaleksandrovsk, Rassein, Telshi, Shavli, Upita, Vilkomir, and part of Kovno) became a new guberniya called Kovno. The southern part of Vilna Guberniya that was the uezds of Vilna, Oshmiany, and Zavileyski (renamed Sventsion uezd) remained in the Vilna Guberniya. The Lida Uezd, at that time part of the Grodno Guberniya, as well as Disna and Vileika Uezds, then part of the Minsk Guberniya, were added to Vilna Guberniya.  Novogrudek Uezd that had been part of Grodno Guberniya was added to Minsk Guberniya.

The Grodno Guberniya uezds of Grodno, Volkovysk, Slonim, Brest, Kobrin, Pruzhany and three uyezds of the Bialystok province became part of the Grodno Guberniya that also was being reorganized. Drogichin Uezd merged with Belsk Uyezd causing Drogichin to lose its status as the uezd administrative center.  The capital remained Grodno.  Bialystok guberniya was abolished.

Last modified January 26, 2007