Dom Kulturi, Kadykchan, Kolyma

Dom Kulturi

By the Kolyma Highway, after kilometer 700, there lies a ghost town called Kadykchan. It once had over 10 000 inhabitants, but after the collapse of the Soviet Union profits of the nearby mine slumped, and at the turn of the millennium the entire town was left alone in the middle of the taiga at Russian Far East. Most of the buildings in Kadykchan are from 1960s or 1970s, but the oldest ones originate from 1940s and 1950s and were built by forced labour. Kadykchan was originally a Gulag camp, and the first mine in the area was manned by prisoners, including writer Varlam Shalamov. Prisoners also constructed the oldest part of the city, for example the school and Dom Kulturi. After the labour camp system was dismantled at the 1960s, free – at least relatively free – citizens moved to the city, and its past as a prison camp was obliterated. Now, when the town is abandoned, it has become a tragically beautiful memorial to the futility of Gulag.

Advertisements Share this:
Like this:Like Loading... Related