200TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE MOSCOW KREMLIN MUSEUMS

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In 2006 the Moscow Kremlin Museums celebrated the 200th Anniversary. 10 March 1806 is considered to be the date of the museum's foundation—Emperor Alexander I signed a decree ‘On rules of Administration and Preservation of the Valuables kept in the Workshop and Armoury Chamber’, which ended up the process started by Peter the Great— transformation of royal depositories, storages and workshops into a museum. The Armoury Chamber became the first public museum in Moscow and made a bright contribution to the history of museology in Russia.

In consequence of changes that took place in the country in the early 20th century, there was formed a unique museum complex by 1920s in the Moscow Kremlin territory. It included the Armoury Chamber, the Assumption, Archangel and Annunciation Cathedrals, the Church of Laying of Our Lady's Holy Robe, the ‘Ivan the Great’ Bell Tower Complex and the 17th-century Patriarch's Palace.

During its 200-years history, the Moscow Kremlin Museums have changed its name and administration more than once. Nevertheless, its collection has always remained unique, and the staff members' skill level has always been high.

The museum has always been headed by outstanding people, such as Prince N.B. Yusupov—the Moscow governor, famous writer M.N. Zagoskin, historian S.M. Soloviov. The museum activity was linked with the chairman of the Academy of Arts A.N. Olenin, artist F.G. Solntsev, historian Ivan Zabelin, the founder of the Russian History Museum. 

In October 1991, the unique character of the Kremlin museum complex found official acknowledgement and received a status of The Moscow Kremlin State Historical and Cultural Museum and Heritage Site, as well as it was included into the list of UNESCO. The 200th Anniversary of the Museums was marked with a lavish event programme.