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Riga under the Tsar

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Riga (Town, city)
  • 1700-1721 The Great Northern War. As the war begins, the General Governor of Vidzeme orders the outskirts of the city to be burned.
  • 1709 Riga is surrounded by Russian military forces, and the siege lasts for 9 months.
    Starvation overtakes the city.
  • 1710 The plague epidemic begins in the city (The Great Plague), about 50% of the inhabitants die. Riga surrenders and is taken over by the Russian Tsar Peter I.
  • 1731 Riga is declared a province (gubernia).
  • 1721 By the Nistade Peace Treaty Riga is incorporated as a component of the Russian Empire.
    In honour of this, the first public park is established in Riga - the Kaiser Gardens
  • 1733 Building of the first closed sewer is begun.
  • 1773 The Museum of Riga is founded.
  • 1782 The first permanent theatre is founded.
  • 1803 The first city hospital is established.
  • 1810 Zasulauks Manufacturing begins operating.
  • 1812 Napoleon's army advances towards the city, and the suburbs of Riga are burned down. It transpires that the burning of the suburbs was decided too hastily. The citizens are displeased, the city has suffered material losses, and as a result the General Governor, M.G. Essen, is removed from his position.
  • 1816 The Riga Stock Exchange is established.
  • 1830 Riga port receives the first steamship, the "Oscar", from Luebeck.
  • 1841 Kuznetsov Porcelain Factory begins operating.
  • 1852 A horse omnibus service is established
  • 1861 The railway line from Riga to Daugavpils is completed and Riga's first railway station is opened.
    The Riga Polytechnic Institute is founded.
  • 1862 The first sporting organization in Latvia, the Riga Gymnasts Union, is founded.
  • 1857-1863 The obsolete defensive walls are removed and the Boulevard Belt is created.
  • 1868 The Riga Latvian Society is established and the Latvian National Revival begins.
  • 1869 The Jonathan Union (Workers Supporting Workers) is founded, and the Russian-Baltic train factory starts operating.
  • 1873 The first Latvian Song Festival takes place.
  • 1882 The first trams (horse-driven) start operating in Riga.
    The first 54 phone subscribers are connected to the telephone network.
  • 1894 The factory "Fenikss" is established.
  • 1896 The first movie is shown in Riga.
    The first 6-story house is built in Riga. (17 Lāčplēša Street)
  • 1897 The first water-tower begins operating in Riga.
  • 1898 The electrical equipment factory (later VEF) is established in Riga.
  • 1901 Riga celebrates its 700th anniversary
  • 1905 A workers' uprising takes place in Riga and grows into violent clashes with the police and military troops.
    The Riga power-plant begins operating.
  • 1907 The Russian-Baltic coach factory starts production of cars.
  • 1910 The Factory "Motor" in Riga starts producing aircraft.
  • 1912 The first telegraph station begins operating, Riga Zoo is opened.
  • 1915 The front line of World War I approaches Riga, and most of the factories are evacuated east. Together with the factories, about 200 000 workers and their families retreat to Russia.
    German troops besiege Riga.
  • 1917 German troops take over Riga. The German Kaiser, Wilhelm II, arrives in Riga.