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Manjil is a historical town in Gilan Provincemarker in the southern basin of Caspian in Northern Iranmarker.

History and Geography

Manjil is located between N36º45´18˝-N36º41´42˝ and E49º23´6˝ and E49º31´ 48˝. Its known as the windy city of Iran; a reputation caused by its geographical position in the Alborzmarker mountains i.e., at a small cleft in Alborz that funnels the wind through Manjil to the Qazvin plateaumarker. Throughout the history Manjil has been a gate to the Southern Caspian area. There are numerous archaeological site excavations (mostly illegal) in Manjil area because of its rich cultural history. Some of these sites are related to the Ismaili era i.e., Hassan Sabbah movement based in Alamoot forte (one may find artifacts from 2-3 millennia B.C., in some households in the area!).

Manjil is also known for its olive gardens and the river Sepid Rood (or "Sefid Rood", "white river"). This river that passes by the town is formed in Manjil by two joining rivers and since 1960 has been the site of a dam built on it that significantly contributes to Gilanmarker's agriculture while generating electric power. The lake behind the Sepid Rood dam also ads to the beauty of the area (visible on Google earth at the above coordinates).

Modern History

In modern era Manjil was the site of a historical battle between the nationalist revolutionary forces of Jangal (led by Mirza Koochak Khan) and the joint Britishmarker and White Russian forces on June 12, 1918. The latter forces (led by General Dunsterville and Colonel Bicherakhov) willing to pass through Manjil as the only passage to the Caspian in order to reach Bakumarker and overthrow the newly formed Baku Commune (led by Stepan Shahumian). General Dunsterville's private diaries and notes, including those kept during his command of the Dunsterforce Mission to North Persiamarker and Baku, 1918 were transcribed from the original by General Dunsterville's great granddaughter, and are co-located on the Great War Primary Documents Archive [212914].

Although devastated by an earthquake of magnitude 7.3 on June 21, 1990, for the last few decades Manjil has enjoyed industrial and economic growth but could have more potential given its natural and human resources.

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