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Коновалов И.А. The Specifics of Local Government in Siberia in Early 19th Century

Published in journal "Исторический журнал: научные исследования", 2017-3 , pages 113-121.

Resume: Based on pre-Revolutionary legislation and previously unknown documents from state archives, the article comprehensively examines the specifics of local government in Siberia in the beginning of the 19th century. The subject of this research are the changes in the system of the governorate and general-governorate administrations of the region. The growing interesting in the history of local government is tied not only to the aim of scientists to have a more profound look into the past, but also driven by strictly practical needs. Turning to the forgotten traditions of local government, it is important to consider more cohesively the historical experience that was accumulated for centuries. Considering modern realities, it is also essential to have a new look on the already known facts and events in order to overcome old myths and fallacies and prevent the appearance of new ones. The theoretical-methodological base of this study consists of the principles of historical cognition: objectivity, historicism, determinism, alternativity and the social approach that presume an objective approach to the analysis of the examined topic, as well as a critical treatment of sources. Upon writing this article, the author made a reassessment of some well-known and established historical phenomena, introduced into scientific circulation new archival material and normative-legislative acts earlier unknown to a wide circle of scientists. The author comes to the conclusion that the power of the administrative-police bodies in the region had their specifics and were to a significant degree more broad than in the central governorates of the Russian Empire. The article pays special attention to the attempts to reorganize regional local governments. The author examines in detail such aspects of the topic as the aim of the Supreme Power to place under their control the almost independent power of the governors and general-governors without introducing a social element into the system of governing. The «Institutions for governance of the provinces» of 1775 was extended to the region without taking into account the huge Siberian distances, the presence of only a small number of people capable of carrying out the administrative powers, and the small population of the province. The «Institutions» of 1775 also did not consider the stratification of the confessional and multi-ethnic composition of the Siberian population, extending European principles on native peoples of the region of Siberia. The socio-economic development of the region and the growth of colonization at the beginning of the 19th century caused the necessity of a more flexible organization of the local administration.

Keywords: administration, governor, police, authority, national policy , elections, reform, self-government, power, history of Siberia

DOI: 10.7256/2454-0609.2017.3.22199

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