Pervomaisk district

The Pervomaisk district is located in the south of the Nizhny Novgorod region, 150 km from Nizhny Novgorod. The Umoch river flows through the town. Pervomaisk emerged as a workers’ settlement of the ironworks owned by A.N. Karamzin (the son of the famous writer and historian N.M. Kazamzin).
A.N. Karamzin and his wife N.V. Obolenskaya were not just the founders of the town, they created a cultural center: the first in this area parochial school for 40 peasant children, a hospital, an almshouse for disabled war veterans and elderly, a shelter for children and crippled people. In Pogozhka village, a historical park is preserved (former Karamzins’ estate), in which the place of burial of the Karamzin spouses is located.
The district has several natural monuments: stow “Grafinskie Chasms” which are cenotes of different age, the spring “Nicholas” in Shutilovo village. The spring is a system of four springs on the left bank of the Alatyr river. This place is called “Nicholas” among local people in the honor of Saint Nicholas.
As old residents tell, many years ago Nicholas the Wonderworker appeared here. People started coming to pray to this place and many were healed. Since then, Shutilovo residents have worshiped this Saint and decided to build a chapel in his honor. The chapel fits beautifully into the landscape and has become an architectural landmark of Shutilovo. Locals and guests of the area visit this picturesque place with pleasure.
Shutilovo also holds the funeral of Stroma — a unique ceremony of the spring and summer cycle which is still preserved in the daily life. It is held for several days during the week after the Trinity, with a doll depicting Spring: the ceremony of its meeting, illness, funeral and memorial. Scientists see such ceremonies as folk carnivals. The ceremony culmination falls on Zagoveniye (the last day before the fast), the first Sunday after the Trinity. At present, this ceremony is held in a very few Russian regions and was included in the Red Book of Folklore.