Tara, Russia

Tara, Russia

Tara ( _ru. Та́ра) is a town and the administrative center of Tarsky District, Omsk Oblast, Russia, located about 300 km north of Omsk along the Irtysh river. Population: 26,888 (2002 Census); 26,152 (1989 Census).


Founded as a fort in the late 1500s during Yermak's raids into Siberia, it is one of the oldest towns in the region. It is located at the confluence of the Tara and the major Irtysh rivers.

Tara pre-dates many and gave rise to some Siberian cities, including Omsk itself, expeditions to found which were undertaken at the request of Tara "voyevodas" (military leaders) as early as 1600s. Yet the major developments, including the 18th-century century "Great Siberian Trakt" (road) and the late 19th-century century Trans-Siberian Railway bypassed the town.

Tara has a few surviving historical churches. It had been the second city in the eparchy of the Archbishop of Tobolsk and Tara, whose authority covered the vast Siberian lands. It has also been the administrative center of Tarsky uyezd of Tobolsk guberniya in 1700s–1800s, with jurisdiction over Omsk for a brief time. In the 1930s, it was the head of Tarsky okrug, part of then steppe-to-Arctic stretching Omsk Oblast.

Since 1943, Tara is the administrative center of Tarsky District of Omsk Oblast. It is still mentioned in the title of Archbishop of Omsk and Tara, with the authority diminished to the size of the oblast. Tara has been dropping in regional population rankings, yielding to Isilkul, Kalachinsk, and Nazyvayevsk, all of which are on the Trans-Siberian Railway.

Since 2000, Tara have received a couple of economic boosts. The construction of a permanent automobile bridge across Irtysh completed the Tomsk–Tara–Tobolsk highway, a northern parallel to the railway. The exploration and exploitation of the Krapivinskoye Oilfield in the Oblast's north have led to increased tanker traffic to Omsk, as well as a construction of a minor local refinery.

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