Museum of the Decembrists
Irkutsk is recognized as the Decembrists' center of Russia. Museums were opened (in 1970 and 1985, respectively) in houses where the families of Sergei Trubetskoy and Sergey Volkonsky had lived. You'll find here genuine things that belonged to the Decembrists and replicas of lost things such as pieces of furniture, tableware, stoves, musical instruments, ancient chandeliers, embroidery, books, sheet music, and pictures and photographs. On certain days, just like when the hosts were alive, the candles are lit, music is played, and poetry and stories are recited.
Irkutsk historic-memorial museum of the Decembrists consists of two memorial manors, located on the neighboring streets in the historical center of the city: Trubetskoy Manor (Dzerzhinskogo st. 64, tel. (3952) 29-26-63) and Volkonsky Manor (Volkonsky lane 10, tel. (3952) 53-62-58). The history of the museum keeps its chronicle since 29th December 1970, although the museum collection came into being even in 1925th. The Museum of the Decembrists was a part of Irkutsk regional local history museum in 30 years. In 2000 the museum became an independent state cultural institution: "Irkutsk regional historic-memorial museum of the Decembrists".
Volkonsky Manor is a unique phenomenon in cultural Irkutsk. Accurately recreated historical interiors of the house (where the original items of the families of Volkonsky, Ivashev, Muravyov, Kuechelbecker, Puschin, Zavalishin, Kahovsky, Fonvisin, Yushnevsky are exponated) help to present traditions and the prince's way of life. Regular exposition tells about the life of the Decembrist in West Siberia (1845 - 1856). The museum is proud of its musical instruments, belonged to the Volkonsky family: Pyramidal piano (end of 19th century), grand piano "Lichtenthal" 1831 and music box, made in Switzerland in the middle of 19th century. Also very interesting items of museum's collections are Maria Volkonsky's bead collection, fingerings of Volkonsky couple made of Sergei Volkonsky irons, poplar case, belonged to the Volkonsky family and wall mirror of Maria Volkonsky.
The exposition of Trubetkoy Manor shows fates of all the Decembrists through Siberian life of Tubetskoy family. The exposition consists of original family belongings: two chairs, porcelain vase, bronze table, "Baikal landscape" and portrait of prince Trubetskoy painted by his daughter Alexandra, toilet bag of princess Trubetskoy (a box for house, needle and toilet accessories), "Mother of God with a baby" icon, the paten and chalice veil, wallet, letters folder and box for letters. The visitors can look at the original books of Decembrist Trubetskoy (with the possessor sign) and Avraamov. Also here are original belongings of Decembrists Muravev, Gorbachevsky, Basargin.