Major General Alexei Aleksandrovich Voronov was my maternal great-grandfather. I have written about him once before here. Since then I have discovered a bit more about him.
Alexei attended the Pavlovsk military school, graduating in around 1870 as a “Harness Junker”, which appears to have been a rank of senior cadet and, at the time, was a rank given to a non-commissioned officer who came from the nobility. The Pavlovsk military school was opened in 1863 in St Petersburg. It ran until November 1917. He went on to attend the Nikolaev Engineering Academy, where he studied the sciences.
The orders and insignia he was awarded throughout his career included the Order of St Stanislaus 1st, 2nd and 3rd Degree, St Vladimir 3rd and 4th Degree, the Bulgarian Order of St Alexander 2nd Degree, a silver medal in memory of the reign of Emperor Alexander III and the Order of St Alexander Nevsky. A Google search for those awards turned up this website: https://gwar.mil.ru/informations/awards/orden-svyatogo-stanislava/ where I discovered that, in Russia, the orders were awarded in a strict sequence. The lowest award in the system was the Order of St Stanislaus 3rd Degree, then the 2nd Degree, followed by St Vladimir 4th Degree and 3rd Degree, St Stanislaus 1st Degree (which was exclusively awarded to Generals) and then the Order of St Alexander Nevsky. The Order of St Vladimir was apparently one of the most honourable awards which was presented for merit and length of service. The Order of St Alexander Nevsky was a high honour indeed and quite rare. I am intrigued by the Bulgarian Order of St Alexander and can find out very little about it. I wonder why a Russian officer would have received a Bulgarian Order.
As I mentioned in my previous post about Alexei, he was married twice. His second marriage was to his cousin, my great-grandmother, Anna Pavlovna Voronov. They had four children, the eldest of whom was my grandfather Pavel (Paul Woronoff) who I have written about here. In the photo above he is standing at the back. Three years later his brother Alexander was born, followed two years later by Anna and then four years after her came the youngest sibling Natalia. I have written the sad story of Natalia’s husband Boris here. The family is pictured above, my grandfather is standing at the back of the photo.
By the time Natalia was born Alexei was working at Tsarskoye Selo. I know that Natalia attended the Smolny Institute for Noble Maidens in 1910 and the family was then living in St Petersburg in Apartment 8, Building 1 on the embankment of the Moika Rivier. The apartment building was known as The Adamini House. In the summer the Voronovs lived on an estate called Novinsky Schar in the Ufa region of Russia. The Ufa region is over 1000kms east of Moscow in the Urals. I have no information about the estate. However, the history of the region looks interesting and has connections to both the Mongols and Ivan the Terrible!