“History and Geography Dictionary of the Saratov Province” by A.N. Minkh
Published: Saratov, 1898
Translation and notes by Dr. Mila Koretnikov

Kulalinka Verkhnyaya, Verkhnyaya Kulalinka, Verkhnyaya Galka, Golstein ( Holstein), German colony of mainly Lutherans, and some Baptists. It is a volost village of Ust-Kulalinka volost, Kamyshin uyezd (district), 3d stan, 7th distict of Zemstvo chief.

It is situated 140 verstas from Saratov, 40 verstas – from the uyezd city Kamyshin. Verkhnyaya Kulalinka got its name from the river and also because of the fact it lies upstream from the other colony of the same volost: Ust-Kulalinka. The colony is located 50 degrees 22' North in latitude and 15 degrees 25’ East in longitude from Pulkovo, on both banks of the river Kulalinka and the brook “Kladbishchenskii Barak” (i.e. “Cemetery barrack”) flowing into it. Both the brook and the river rise a little bit upward from the settlement. There are 35 wells in the yards. Approximately 5 verstas to the west from the village (according to the 1892 military-topographic map of the General Staff) the locality rises up to 616 feet above the level of the Black Sea. According to Klaus, Verkhnyaya Kulalinka was founded in 1764-1766, according to the Province Zemstvo Compendium (Volume XI) it was founded in 1766-1767 by expatriates from different European countries: France, Sweden, Switzerland, and Germany with assistance of special government agents, using the benefits of Catherine’s manifesto. According to volost board of administration the colony was founded in 1768.

According to the 1859 List of Foreign Settlers (“Our Colonies” by Klaus) there were in the colony Verkhnyaya Kulalinka, Ust-Kulalinka district: according to census #5 (1788) – 43 families, 145 males and 138 females; according to census #6 (1798) - 50 families, 168 males and 186 females; according to census #7 (1816) – 70 families, 245 males and 226 females; according to census #8 (1834) – 101 families, 488 males and 440 females; according to census #9 (1850) – 141 families, 690 males and 657 females; according to census #10 (1857) – 127 families, 715 males and 689 females.

According to the list of settlements of the Central Statistics Committee, published in 1862, the German colony Verkhnyaya Kulalinka aka Golstein/Holstein was shown by the river Kulalinka, 40 verstas from the uyezd city Kamyshin. There were in the colony: 119 households, 719 males and 700 females, total of 1,419 people; 1 Lutheran Church, 1 school, 1 dairy, and 7 mills.

According to 1886 Zemstvo Census there were in the colony Verkhnyaya Kulalinka: 174 households, 719 males and 683 females, total: 1,402 people of both sexes, also there were 91 constantly absent families and 5 families of 32 people of both sexes who were outsiders. Literate population: 420 males and 403 females. There were 166 inhabited houses, 64 of those were made of stone, 99 - of wood, 3 – of wattle and daub; roofs of 89 of those were made of boards, 77 were thatched. 2 houses were two-storeyed. There were 12 industrial enterprises, 1 tavern, and 1 store. The settlers had 177 ploughs, 3 winnowing machines, 502 horses (both work horses and non-work horses), 310 oxen, 593 cows and calves, 769 sheep, 399 pigs and 123 goats. In 1885 annual fees and duties amounted to 5,498 rubles, revenues – 385 rubles. The allotted land was 3,884.5 dessiatinas of arable land and 2,018 dessiatinas of land not suitable for farming, total: 5,902.5 dessiatinas. According to the settlers 161 dessiatinas were under estates, 2,057 dessiatinas were arable, 500 – under forests and bushes, and 1,000 dessiatinas were under pastures. Almost the whole allotment is situated on the right bank of the Volga river - with the exception of 78 dessiatinas on the left bank, in Novouzensk uyezd. The pastures surround the estates, most of the allotment is situated west of the settlement. Half of the arable land is black earth, 0.25 arshin deep, subsoil is yellow clay, the other half is sandy-loam with sandy subsoil. All of the unproductive land is sandy. The location is hilly and elevated. The hills are sandy, the best soil is in elevated valleys. Lower valleys are washed away by waters and sanded. At first the land was divided between households. Starting with the 8 th census and after 9 th and 10 th censuses the land was divided between males. In 1872 the land was redistributed between available males. Re-allotments take place every 5 years. Females do not get any land but a widow can use the land of her late husband till the next re-allotment. For the land distribution all the men are divided in groups of 10. Hayfields are distributed every year according to the number of available males.

There are up to 400 dessiatinas of firewood forest, most of it deciduous forest. It is felled in certain parceled out strips. Bushes can be cut down by each household owner where he wants. The houses are heated mostly with kizyaks, sometimes also with straw. Few of the household owners have gardens on the kitchen-garden land. The gardens have been there for a long time and they say there were more of them earlier. They also say about 100 years ago there were vineyards here but no one remembers this time. Apple tree varieties grown here are mostly “White Apple” and “Black Tree”. Apple harvest is brought to the nearby villages and exchanged for grain. There are two granaries here, both board-roofed. The most popular crop has always been wheat, mostly Russian wheat. Kuban wheat cannot grow well here as the soil is not good for it. Rye takes 1/2 of the amount of wheat, oats and millet even less than rye. They have never sown buckwheat. They started growing sunflower in 1880.

The farming system is 4-field: every year two fields are spring-sown and one field is rye-sown. Every field lies fallow every fourth year. Fields are not manured. They plow only with the help of German 1-plowshare plows using 3 horses or 3 pairs of oxen. 2- and 3- plowshare plouws are rare, they appeared only in 1880. Crop is mowed down with a scythe, it is never cut with a sickle. Threshing is done with the help of threshing stones, which they started using in the 1860s. Before that they threshed with the help of carts. They sell grain crop in Nizhnyaya Dobrinka, where there is a dock on the Volga river. Flour is sold in Kamyshin. In winter cattle (with the exception of horses) is fed with wheat straw and chaff, hay is spared for horses. About 10 household owners rent their allotments here out and lease land in the Samara province where they also live. Seven water flour-grinding mills are let on lease for 12 years.

According to the Saratov Province Statistics Committee (1891) there were in the volost village Verkhnyaya Kulalinka: a parish church, a school, a volost administration, a medical assistant and a village first-aid station. In 1891 there were 160 households here, 935 males and 901 females, the total of 1,836 inhabitants of both sexes. According to Ust-Kulalinka volost administration report of 1894 there were in Verkhnyaya Kulalinka: 1 wooden Lutheran church, board-roofed, sanctified in 1830, a volost administration, German parochial school (started in 1788), zemstvo school (started in 1882), obstetrician-medical assistant (since 1888), zemstvo stagecoach station – in summer there were 4 horses there. In 1894 there were 162 households here including public ones: 1 church yard, 1 volost administration and 1 school. Buildings are mostly wooden, half of the buildings have straw roofs, the rest have wooden roofs, and 2 houses are covered with metal roofs. The settlement was built according to a plan. There were 1,074 males and 1,012 females, total: 2,086 people of both sexes. They were settlers-owners, German colonists making up one community. They are mostly Lutheran, 32 people are Baptists. The community has the allotment of land: 3,885 dessiatinas of convenient land and 2,018 dessiatinas of inconvenient land, total: 5,903 dessiatinas including 240 dessiatinas on the left bank of the Volga, on the tract which is called “10 years’ waste land”.

It is considered that Verkhnyaya Kulalinka is 15 verstas from the colony Verkhnyaya Gryaznukha, 18 – from the colony Ust-Gryaznukha, 5 – from the colony Verkhnyaya Dobrinka, 7 – from the colony Shcherbakovka, 40 – from the uyezd city Kamyshin and 147 verstas – from Saratov. According to S.A. Shcheglov Verkhnyaya Kulalinka is so many verstas from other volost villages of Kamyshin uyezd: 73 from Antipovka, 101 from Akhmat, 42 from Bannoye, 82 from Burluk, 72 from Verkhnyaya Dobrinka, 45 from Guselki, 66 from Zolotoye, 30 from Rosenberg (Ilovlinskaya), 47 from Kamenka, 41 from Kamyshin, 72 from Kotov, 85 from Krasnyi Yar, 92 from Lopukhovka, 132 from Lemeshkino, 102 from Linevo Ozero, 107 – from Nizhnyaya Dobrinka, 99 from Norka, 74 from Oleshnya, 100 from Rudnya, 76 from Salamatina, 69 from Ust-Zolikha (Sosnovskaya), 57 from Tarasovka, 79 from Topovka.

Volost – a small rural district in old Russia.
Stan – Stans were introduced in pre-revolutionary Russia as additional territorial division: province were divided into uyezds, uyezds into volosts, volosts into stans.
Zemstvo - elective district council in pre-revolutionary Russia. The post of “zemstvo chief” was introduced in 1889 as a first degree of jurisdiction for peasants. Starting with 1872 German settlers were given the same status as Russian peasants, they also had zemstvo chiefs.
One versta - old Russian measure of distance equal to 1.06 km.
Pulkovo - 15 kilometers from St. Petersburg. The main observatory is located here. The observatory was built in 1833-39, 75 meters above the sea level, in latitude 59° 19' 40" North. Pulkovo meridian is in longitude 30° 19' 40" East from Greenwich.
Dessiatina - measure of land = 2.7 acres.
Arshin = 0.71 m = 2.4 feet
Kizyak - pressed dung used as fuel.

Verkhnyaya Dobrinka and Nizhnyaya Dobrinka are very close to Verkhnyaya Kulalinka. The distances to these two villages cited in the original are not correct

Lower Volga Project
Of Interest
[Lower Volga Project] [Dobrinka] [Dubovka] [Dreispitz] [Galka] [Holstein] [Kraft] [Mueller] [Shcherbakovka] [Schwab] [Stephan] [Of Interest] [Obituaries]