Friday, May 18, 2012

Old Believers in Alaska


Alaska has a rich heritage of Native Alaskans, but also that of a group of Russian people known as the Old Believers. They live in the village of Nikolaevsk, on the Kenai Peninsula in south Central Alaska.

Russian culture thrives here. Many still dress as their ancestors did in Siberia 1700s. The Old Believers split from the church in the 17th century when Patriarch Nikon introduced reforms to their orthodoxy. Because the Old Believers wouldn't conform the church excommunicated them and the czars persecuted them. Many moved to Siberian taiga. During the Bolshevik Revolution they were forced out of Russia. They moved to China, to South America and finally to Oregon. But soon they found that American culture was influencing their youth, so they moved once again way up north to Alaska. The following film explains a little more of their amazing story.
 

 



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4 comments:

  1. Wow, what a story! I didn't know about the Old Believers. Thanks for sharing!

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    Replies
    1. Aren't they interesting! There's a story there just waiting to be written.

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  2. I think that's the first I'd ever heard of this group. Interesting. Kind of like the Amish, only more isolated.

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    Replies
    1. They kind of reminded me of the Amish as well. Maybe even more reclusive though.

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