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List of District Centers
Bialystok
53° 08'
23° 09'
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Bielsk
52° 46'
23° 12'
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Brest
52° 06'
23° 42'
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Grodno
53° 41'
23° 50'
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Kobrin
52° 13'
24° 21'
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Lida (Vilna)
53° 53'
25° 18'
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Pruzhany
52° 33'
24° 28'
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Slonim
53° 06'
25° 19'
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Sokolka
53° 25'
23° 30'
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Volkovysk
53° 10'
24° 28'
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This document was provided by Vitalija Gircyte, Chief Archivist of the Kaunas Regional Archives to the Litvak SIG:

Czar's 1842 Edict Effecting Lida uezd

His Majesty's Highest Edict proclaimed to the Senate, on the 18th day of December in the year of 1842, reorganized the Northwest parts of the Russian 
Empire. (Russian names of the period are used.)

 "In order to organize the Northwest guberniyas of Our Empire in terms of population and space, I conclude that it is necessary to reorganize existing Guberniyas, and am ordering:
...
3. The Southern parts of the Vilno Guberniya, e.g. the following uyezds: Vilno, Oshmiany, and Zavileyski will remain in the Vilno Guberniya.  Instead of the northern uyezds, which go to the new Kovno Guberniya, the Lida Uyezd of the Grodno Guberniya, and Disna and Vileika Uyezds of Minsk Guberniya will be added to the Vilno Guberniya.
...
4. The Novogrudek Uyezd of Grodno Guberniya will be added to Minsk Guberniya.

5. The following uyezds of the current Grodno Guberniya: Grodno, Volkovysk, Slonim, Brest, Kobrin, Pruzhany and three uyezds of the Bialystok province will form the Grodno Guberniya which currently is being reorganized.

The Drogichin Uyezd will be added to the Belsk Uyezd, and Drogichin will lose its status as the uyezds administrative center. The capital of this guberniya will be Grodno.


"Gubernya" is the administrative-territorial division in the Russian Empire and in the USSR from 1708-1929. It was introduced by Peter the I. By the end of reign of Ekaterina the II, there were 51 gubernii. At the beginning of the 20th century, there were 101 gubernii.  The head of the gubernya was the Gubernator (governor). 

The executives:
Gubernskoe Pravlenie (Gubernya's management) and Zemskoi Sud (court of law).  After serfdom ended, the governmental management of gubernya consisted of the departments such as court department, military department, finance department and so on. 

Belarus was divided into the gubernii after it was connected to Russian Empire. In 1772 Vitebsk, Inflyantsk, Mstislav, and Polotsk voevodstvos formed Mogilevskaya Gubernya (in 1778 - 96 estates) and Piskovskaya gubernya. In 1776, Polotskaya Gubernya was formed out of Belorussian and Pskov povets (in 1778 - 96 estates).

From the territory of Belarus given to Russia after the second division of Rech Pospolitaya in 1793, Minskaya Gubernya was formed. After the third division of Rech Pospolitaya, Slonim Gubernya was formed.  Oshmyanya and Braslav povets became a part of Vilno Gubernya.  

In 1796, Mogoilev and Polotsk Gubernyas were united and formed Belorussian Gubernya. In 1797, Slonim and Vilno Gubernii were united into Lithuanian Gubernya. In 1801, Lithuanian Gubernya was divided into Grodno Gubernya and Vilno Gubernya. In 1802,  Belorussian Gubernya was divided into Vitebsk  Gubernya and Mogilev Gubernya.

At the end of 18th-19th centuries,  unusual administrative divisions were formed in the territory of Belarus: governor-general divisions which united several gubernii.  After the October revolution of 1917, the former administrative division was preserved for some time but the gorverning departments were changed into the  Council of Worker, Soldiers and Farmers.

In 1917, Vitebsk, Mogilev and non-occupied povets of Minsk and Vilno Gubernii were united into the Western District (beginning 1918 it was called Western  Komuna).

In 1918, it was joined by Smolensk Gubernya. 

In October 1919, Mogilev Gubernya was reformed into Gomel Gubernya (and belonged to the Russian Federation). 

In 1924, gubernii in Belarus were canceled. In the Russian Federation, gubernii existed until 1929. 
 


Compiled by Ellen Sadove Renck
HTML by Joanne Saltman

This data, along with all copyright and other rights therein, is and shall remain the original donor's and Ellen Sadove Renck. No right is granted for the resale of this material or its uploading to any electronic or computerized service for which a fee is charged other than a flat fee for access. However, a limited license is hereby granted to anyone accepting the terms of the license to make no more than 2 printed copies and no more than 4 electronic/cd copies of the work for genealogical purposes only, specifically excluding commercial or religious proselyting purposes, and specifically excluding the right to make derivative works without the prior written consent of Ellen Sadove Renck and further excluding all other rights not specified herein. In consideration for the limited license herein granted the copier, by  making a copy of the listing, hereby agrees to be bound by and accepts the above conditions.

Updated February 2001
Copyright © 1999 Ellen Sadove Renck