Moshenskoye is an ancient village, first mentioned in the cadastres of Bezhetskaya Pyatina in 1545 as Nikolsky Pogost in Moshna.
The name of the village could derive from the words moshna (Russian for wallet, wealth) or mkha (Russian for mossy). The locals believe that the name relates either to the large number of rich estates along the Uver River in the 16th century, or the forest moss on the steep banks of the river.
Burial mounds located along the river prove that the areas adjacent to the Uver River were first permanently settled some 1,000 years ago. The very first settlements date back to the Stone Age.
A stone church and belfry were built in 1787 on the Nicholas Side. The building survived decay and many alterations. In 1992, it was transferred to the Novgorod diocese. The Church of St Nicholas the Wonderworker currently hosts services and sacraments, and parish life is reviving.
The estate of St Petersburg timber merchant Kruglik is one of the many 19th-century estates that survive to this day. It stands on the high bank of the Uver River in the centre of Moshenskoye. The house of merchant A. Ryabov on the left bank of the river delights the eye with its wooden carvings; it currently hosts a museum. Three estates that belonged to artist Vladimir Bozheryanov are also among the local cultural heritage sites.
The Church of the Intersession of the Theotokos stands in the centre of the village, on the left bank of the Uver River. It was built in 1764 by Levashov, a local landlord.
Mounds and burial grounds located along the Uver River show that the area was populated as early as 1,000 years ago. One of the man-made mounds is located in the village and is a cultural heritage site.
Another interesting place in Moshenskoye is the school attended by scout Zoya Kruglova. Built by landlord S. Tsatsura in 1872, the school was later sold to the district and operated as a district school from 1872. A memorial plaque hangs on the front of the building.
The Moshenskoy District is associated with many interesting and famous people in Russian history.
The prominent Russian poet Gavrila Derzhavin and pianist John Field visited the Spas na Moshne estate that belonged to St Petersburg prosecutor Ivan Levashov in the late 18th century.
Lieutenant-General Alexei Maksheyev, a geographer, ethnographer and publicist, who was a friend of Taras Shevchenko and was familiar with such luminaries as Mikhail Butashevich-Petrashevsky, Alexander Herzen and Alexei Pleshcheyev, used to spend a lot of time at the Olekhovo estate on the shore of Lake Velikoye. He even published a study about fishing on Lake Velikoye in the Novgorod Province Records of 1864. The park that belonged to Alexei Maksheyev, a classic example of garden and park art, has survived to this day and is protected by the state. A memorial sign is installed there.
Famous children’s writer Vitaly Bianki was also a local. The house in Mikheyevo where his family lived from 1935 to 1942 has been preserved and brings together prominent names, children and guests from St Petersburg and Novgorod Region for the annual Bianki Readings.
In the “Country of Wonders,” as he called the Moshenskoy District, Vitaly Bianki worked, hunted and went birdwatching with groups of young naturalists from Leningrad. In addition to short stories and essays, written in Yakovishchy and Mikheyevo, he wrote a research paper “The Birds of the Moshenskoy District.”
In 1998, a memorial plaque was installed on the writer’s house in Mikheyevo.
Journey to the Country of Wonders is a tourist itinerary around the places where the writer Vitaly Bianki lived in 1935-1942. A memorial stone was installed there and since 1994, the Bianki Readings have been held at the house.
During the Great Patriotic War, famous Russian painter Ilya Glazunov was brought from besieged Leningrad to the village of Greblo as a child. The famished boy was saved and raised by Marfa Skorodumova. The area and its lakes made a profound impression on him. Many of his paintings are inspired by childhood memories.