Composition of the Archangelsk Governorate officialdom in the first half of the ...

Composition of the Archangelsk Governorate officialdom in the first half of the 19th century

Olesya A. Plekh
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The article deals with the problems of staffing local institutions of Arkhangelsk Governorate in the first half of the 19th century. Based on the materials of systematic recording of officials (group records of service from the collections of the Russian State Historical Archive), the staff composition was analyzed according to three main parameters: social background, age, and level of education. The identified characteristics made it possible to see specific features in the development of the local bureaucracy and the results of the governmental personnel policy. The obtained statistics reflected the peculiarities of governmental policy in the field of forming the social basis for Arkhangelsk bureaucracy.
It was found out that in the first half of the 19th century the composition of Arkhangelsk Governorate officials could not meet the expectations of the government in full since the internal resources of this non-nobility-related territory were quite restricted, and the conditions of service did not attract officials from other governorates. The measures taken (appointing officials from other regions, filling police vacancies with retired military personnel, and introducing service privileges) had a certain effect but were not enough to solve all personnel problems and, primarily, to overcome the shortage of clerical employees, which was most pronounced during the entire period.
The analysis of social background of the officials revealed a high proportion of representatives of the nobility, hereditary civil servants, and persons from taxable classes. The indicators of age structure reflect general Russian tendencies: there were two Arkhangelsk Governorate went through two alternations of generations among officials: during the first quarter of the 19th century, personnel was becoming younger, and in the following decades it was aging, which had stopped by 1850. The available information on education indicates a general low level of professional training. Despite the fact that the measures taken by the government, which linked the level of education with promotion in rank, increased the interest of future officials in obtaining certificates from higher and secondary educational institutions, in the middle of the century most officials were still persons with primary or home education.
Olesya A. Plekh
Candidate  of Historical Sciences, Researcher
Institute of Russian History Russian Academy of  Sciences, Moscow, Russia
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personnel, officialdom, local government, civil service, records of service, social background, age, level of education, Arkhangelsk Governorate
For citation:
Plekh, О. “Composition of the Archangelsk Governorate officialdom in the first half of the 19th century.” Historia Provinciae – the Journal of Regional History, vol. 5, no. 1 (2021): 16–63,

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