The grand opening of the new Kronstadt museum took place on Wednesday 25 October 2023 at 15:00 at the following address: 16/2 Petrovskaya St., Kronstadt,St. Petersburg.
The Museum of the History of Radio Engineering of the USSR is a St. Petersburg museum of technical orientation. Earlier it was called: Museum of Soviet Radio Engineering of the Kurortny district of St. Petersburg. Registered as a non-profit organization in Sestroretsk, Kurortny district of St. Petersburg with branches in Sestroretsk and Kronstadt. It is a member of the Association of Private and People’s Museums of Russia. Also included in the catalogue of private museums of Russia and in the Priority Project of the Union of Private Museums and Collectors (a joint project with the Russian Union of Tourist Industry).
Museum with history
The history of the Museum of Soviet Radio Engineering of the Kurortny district is usually remembered from the times of the radio equipment repair shop that operated in Sestroretsk from 1995 to 2008. After the workshop was closed, the director Ilya Alexandrovich Shkurko kept the equipment brought in for repair, which was abandoned by the former owners due to the unprofitability of repair and the emergence of cheap Chinese electronics. “On retirement I will create a museum”, – Ilya Alexandrovich decided and in free time from his main job leisurely engaged in replenishing the collection of the future museum. But the museum appeared much earlier.
The first attempts to find premises for the museum were made back in 2013. The first exhibitions on “alien” territory started in 2014 in cooperation with the Centralised Library System of Kurortny District. This is also the time when the first stories about the museum were broadcast on St Petersburg television channels. In 2016 and 2019, two major exhibitions were held in Sestroretsk “Art Resort” (a branch of the Museum Complex in Razliv (the museum “Lenin’s Shalash / Shed”). In 2018, a permanent exhibition was inaugurated in the Sestroretsk Resort sanatorium. Finally, on 2 September 2020, the museum was officially registered as a non-profit organization – Private Cultural Institution “Museum of the History of Radio Engineering of the USSR” (MHRE USSR). In 2022, the permanent exposition of the museum was opened in Sestroretsk. The opening of the Kronstadt branch is being prepared.
The Sestroretsk Museum of Soviet Radio Engineering (Sestroretsk Branch) was located on the first floor of the building at 15a Sestra River Embankment. Since February 2022, the premises with an area of 45 sq. m. have been used by agreement with the Voluntary Society for Assistance to the Army, Aviation and Fleet of Russia of St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region under the contract with the Patriotic Association of the Autonomous Non-Profit Organization “Sestroretsk Sports and Technical Centre of the Voluntary Society for Assistance to the Army, Aviation and Fleet of Russia”.
The permanent exposition consists of Soviet radio equipment produced from the post-war period until perestroika. Temporary expositions are represented by a separate exhibition of Soviet automobile radio equipment (organized for the Motorist’s Day), an exhibition of domestic photographic equipment (opened for the Photographer’s Day) and an exhibition of Soviet radio toys (dedicated to the Children’s Day). Closed from 1 September 2023 due to the difficult economic situation, but it may be reopened.
The Kronstadt Museum of Soviet Radio Engineering (Kronstadt Branch) is located at 16/2 Petrovskaya St. (under the arch, in the courtyard). The 230 square metre room is used under the contract with the SPb SCU “Property of SPb” dated 26.05.2022. An important role in the decision to provide this room was played by the appeal of the State Duma deputy, Secretary of the St. Petersburg regional branch of the party “United Russia” Sergei Mikhailovich Boyarsky. Unfortunately, most of the premises required repairs, even electricity was missing. By the summer of 2023, an agreement was signed with an electricity supplying organisation and part of the premises was repaired, exhibition equipment was installed. The exposition continues to be filled. The original concept of the exposition organisation provides for the creation of separate halls for each republic of the former USSR. The Kronstadt branch will be opened to the public on 25 October 2023.
What visitors will see
Now the museum has more than a thousand items in its collection. Among them there are exclusive items: the first post-war receiver produced by the VEF plant in Riga, the first mass-produced TV sets “KVN-49” and “Leningrad T-2”, “monumental”receiver “MIR”, a unique automated lamp “Festival” with remote control and many other no less unique exhibits, by which you can trace the history of technology development in our country. Ilya Shkurko, Director of the Museum,emphasises its special role: “The museum was created not only for nostalgia, but also for the younger generation to know that Russia is the birthplace of radio, television, satellite and lunokhod”.
Indeed, mass production of radio equipment “for the home” began after the Great Patriotic War. The exposition will present one of the most “aged” exhibits – a VEF Super M-557 tube receiver, produced by the VEF factory since 1945. The unit is made in a rounded wooden case and is equipped with a large round tuning scale with backlighting, on which there are wavelength designations, frequencies, and names of cities. An optical indicator, the “magic eye”, allows precise tuning to the desired station. Only 167,665 of these receivers were produced.
The best electronics of the Soviet Union are represented by Korvet, Brig and Karavella brands produced by the Kirov Ladoga plant. These are unique vertical turntables-electrophones “Karavella-203” and “Korvet-248”, turntables “Korvet-003” and “Korvet-038” with “nanotechnological” system of dynamic damping. They are able to play records even in the conditions of sea rocking! And the Korvet acoustic systems were rightly considered the best in the Soviet Union….
Address of the museum on the Internet and social networks: mirussr.ru
Link to photo materials on Yandex disc: disk.yandex.ru
More information about the museum can be found on the first page of Yandex.
Museum opening hours: Saturday, Sunday from 14:00 to 19:00.
Tel: +7 (911) 920-66-70.
Venue of the event: 16/2 Petrovskaya St., Kronstadt,St. Petersburg (under the arch, in the courtyard).
“Today the Museum is an association of people who are not indifferent to the national history, enthusiasts united by their love for the national technique. The technique that causes not only nostalgia, but also pride for the people who created it!”, I.A. Shkurko, Director of the Museum
The Museum of the History of Radio Engineering of the USSR is a member of the Association of Private and People’s Museums of Russia.