Saturday, September 6, 2014

Today in History: the Name of Saint Petersburg Restored in 1991

Postcard RU-2915679 from Russia shows the Grand Peterhof Palace near Saint Petersburg, Russia. Saint Petersburg is the second largest city in Russia, located on the Neva River estuary where the river meets the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea. 

The city started as Tsar Peter the Great built the Peter and Paul Fortress on May 27, 1703. After the beginning of World War I, Saint Petersburg was renamed to Petrograd, meaning "Peter's City", to remove the German words Sankt and Burg on September 1, 1914. 

Petrograd was renamed as Leningrad on January 26, 1924, five days after Vladimir Lenin's death. Lenin led the October Revolution that stormed the Winter Palace on November 7, 1917 (October 25, 1917 in old style date), marking the rise of the Communist Party. The city has more than 200 places associated with the life and activities of Lenin. 

The city restored its name back to Saint Petersburg on September 9, 1991, after a referendum upon the name of the city on June 12, 1991. 

In the United States, the city St. Petersburg in Florida, incorporated on February 29, 1892, was named after Saint Petersburg, Russia, hometown of one of its co-founders Peter Demens, The legend had that Peter Memens won the naming right by a coin toss. 

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