History and Literature Museum "Chekhov and Sakhalin"
Anton Chekhov did not have official authorization to inspect hard labor in exile, having learned about this the head of the Amur Territory, Governor-General Baron Korf, issued a required paper to the writer.
As long as until 1875 the international status of Sakhalin, the largest island of modern Russia, remained vague. However, the Russian Empire did not give up on its plan to gain a foothold on the territory. As Sakhalin’s climate is severe, forced colonization was seen as the most perspective way of settlement so from 1869 Sakhalin has served as a place of exilement and forced labour camps. Somewhere about those days the town of Alexandrovsk was founded.
Very little was known of Sakhalin in the European part of Russia; Anton Chekhov who was planning a trip to the island has seen it for himself. "In Russia there is frightful poverty of facts and tremendous abundance of arguments", that was his judgement.
In 1890 he put foot on the roadstead of Aleksandrovsk with a firm intention to fill the information gap. And he succeeded: the book "Sakhalin Island" written by him сaused a great sensation and initiated a discussion about the cancellation of the exile regime. Today the Historical and Literary Museum “A.P. Chekhov and Sakhalin" reposits almost 20 thousands of exhibits, divided into two departments: historical and literary and local history.
Chekhova st., 19, Aleksandrovsk-Sakhalinskiy, Sakhalin Oblast
Web site: gil-museum.shl.muzkult.ru