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Vilna Governorate (light green), 1795-1797
Vilnius Governorate in 1897
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The Vilnius Governorate (1801-1840 often called Lithuania-Vilnius Governorate) ( , Vilenskaya guberniya, , ) or Government of Vilna was a governorate (guberniya) of the Russian Empiremarker created after the Third Partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1795. It was part of the Lithuanian General Governorate, which was called the Vilnius General Governorate after 1830, and was attached to the Northwestern Krai. The seat was in Vilna (Vilniusmarker) where the Governors General resided.

Name and territorial changes

The first governorates, Vilnius Governorate (consisting of eleven uyezds or districts) and Slonim Governorate, were established after the third partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Just a year later, on December 12 1796, by order of Tsar Paul I they were merged into one governorate, called Lithuania Governorate, with its capital in Vilnius. By order of Tsar Alexander I on September 9 1801 Lithuania Governorate was split into the Lithuania-Vilna Governorate and the Lithuania-Grodno Governorate. After thirty nine years, the word "Lithuania" was dropped from the two names by Nicholas I. In 1843 another administrative reform took place, creating Kovno Governorate out of seven western districts of the Vilna Governorate, including all of Samogitia. Vilna Governorate received three additional districts: Vileykamarker and Dzisnamarker from Minsk Governorate and Lidamarker from Grodno Governorate. This arrangement remained unchanged until World War I. A part of it was then included in the Wilna Administrative Area of Ober-Ost, formed by the occupying German Empiremarker.

In 1834 the governorate had about 789,000 inhabitants; in 1897 the number grew to about 1,591,000.

Subdivisions

Uyezds in 1795 Uyezds in 1843
Ashmianymarker
Braslawmarker (since 1835 Novoaleksandrovsk (Zarasaimarker)) To Kovno Governorate
From Minsk Governorate Dzisnamarker
Kovno (Kaunasmarker) To Kovno Governorate
From Grodno Governorate Lidamarker
Raseiniaimarker To Kovno Governorate
Šiauliaimarker To Kovno Governorate
Švenčionysmarker
Telšiaimarker To Kovno Governorate
Trakaimarker
Ukmergėmarker To Kovno Governorate
Upytėmarker (since 1843 Panevėžysmarker) To Kovno Governorate
From Minsk Governorate Vileykamarker
Vilna (Vilnius)

Governors General residing in Vilnius



Ethnic composition

Russian authorities periodically performed censuses. However, they reported strikingly different numbers:

Year Total Lithuanians Poles Belarusians Russians Jews Other
1862 838,464 418,880 50% 154,386 18% 146,431 17% 14,950 2% 76,802 9% 27,035 3%
1865 891,715 210,273 24% 154,386 17% 418,289 47% 27,845 3% 76,802 9% 4,120 0%
1883 1,192,000 417,200 35% 281,312 24% 239,592 20% - 176,416 15% 77,480 7%
1897 1,561,713 274,414 18% 126,770 8% 880,940 56% 75,803 5% 197,929 13% 5,857 0%
1909 1,550,057 231,848 15% 188,931 12% 570,351 37% 408,817 26% 146,066 9% 4,094 0%


See also



References




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