The Last Mohican of Historical Yerevan

The Last Mohican of Historical Yerevan

This majestic building of old Yerevan today resides in an unkempt and disappointing condition. The building at 38 Pushkin Street is almost the only surviving building in this historic district of Yerevan.

This is a two-story mansion that used to belong to Arakel Afrikian. It was built of black tuff at the beginning of the 20th century according to the design of architect Vasily Mirzoian.

The exterior of the second floor is distinguished by its sculptural decorations and traditional balconies. Inside the building, to this day, murals worthy of attention and specially designed furnaces have been preserved.

The house of Afrikian now factually stands in an environment alien to it. It resides helplessly between the skyscrapers towering nearby. Or maybe it stands merely because nothing else surprises us in the central part of Yerevan.

On the opposite side of the street where the facade of the former building of the Ministry of Emergency Situations is preserved is a big construction boom. An 18-story high-rise building is being built there at a fast pace.

In the neighborhood where there previously was the beautiful building of the Afrikian City Club destroyed several years ago despite the stormy protests of Yerevan, another multi-story building is being built. I think, after all this, it is not difficult to imagine what an “attractive” view the historical crossroad of Teryan and Pushkin streets will have.

The house at 38 Pushkin Street is one of the most memorable buildings in the city of Yerevan. During the celebration of the centenary of the Sardarapat Battle in 2018, this building should have been included in the list of official event locations.

After all, in 1918-1920, the Armenian commander and commander-in-chief of the Sardarapat front Movses Silikian lived in this house. And it was from the balcony of this building that Yerevan periodically received information about the situation on the Armenian-Turkish front from May 21-28, 1918. Unfortunately, the hopes were in vain.

Ruben Shukhyan

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