Shostka is a city located in Sumy region of Ukraine. The city is standing on the river with the same name Shostka (the Desna River tributary).
It is also known as “homeland” of Mousekewitz family from “An American Tail” animated movie.
The population - 79,500 (2012).
Phone code - +380 5449; postal code - 41100.
The origin of Shostka
The land where the city is located attracted people for a long time. The first settlements around the town date back to early Paleolith - about 15,000 B.C. These lands also suffered Tatar-Mongol yoke.
The first mentioning of the settlement is coming from the beginning of the 17th century. That time, it was a village populated by Ukrainian Cossacks.
The first record of Shostka refers to 1739, when a gun-powder plant was constructed on the left bank of the river Shostka, one of the Desna River tributaries. A settlement came into being together with the plant.
Workers, soldiers, peasants from surrounding settlements worked and lived there. The plant met the needs of Russian Army in gun-powder. In 1764, the plant was closed for some time.
More Historical Facts…
Gun-powder production center of the Russian Empire
The plant was opened again in 1771 - due to Russian-Turkish war. In 1775, there were over 200 workers at the plant. The need in gun-powder was growing, its production was increasing especially during Russian-Turkish wars and the war of 1812.
There are evidences that M.I.Kutuzov sent the plant administration a gratitude and money to workers for their good gun-powder supplies for Russian Army.
During the Crimean War of 1853-1856, the production of gun-powder grew 6 times and the population of the settlement reached almost 4,000.
In the second half of the 19th century, the plant was reconstructed, in 1893, the railway connected Shostka with industrial centers of Russia.
At the end of the 19th century, the population was 4,500, there was the gun-powder plant, a fair and a railway station.
The Soviet period
In 1920, Shostka received city status. Before the World War II, a number of plants were constructed.
In 1931, “Svema” film-producing plant was opened. A lot of Soviet classic movies were shot on Shostka film.
By 1940, it turned into the center of chemical industry. In particular by that time the plant produced 70% of all films and photo material in the USSR.
During Soviet times, the city was an important center of chemical industry (production of films for cinema and photography, aviation reagents), but after the collapse of the Soviet Union these activities stopped.
The aviation reagents producing plant “Khimreaktiv” was not in process, the buildings of the film-producing plant “Svema” were used as store-houses, the brewery was also closed.
At present, Shostka plants of food industry (bred-, milk- and meat-making) are in process as well as military and wood-working industries.
The plant “Impulse” specializes in armament production and it is among strategically important plants of Ukrainian Ministry of Defense.
The situation is the same with the plant “Zvezda” (“Star”) - it is the only one in Ukraine which produces armament for artillery and tanks.
Among the main places of interest are:
- Soviet soldiers’ memorial;
- Nativity church;
- St. Vladimir church.