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Address: Benderskaya str., 28
Year Built: 1901
Storeys: 2

For more than a century, one of the visiting cards of Izmail has been a two-story building on Suvorov Avenue, which today houses comprehensive school No. 2. The location in the very center of the city was the reason that it experienced an exciting, eventful life.

The background to the appearance of the building begins in the 80s and 19th centuries. In those years, a 4-year-old girl’s gymnasium worked in the current building of school No. 1. It was decided to raise funds for the construction of a new building for the Izmail girls’ gymnasium when it became clear that the room was not suitable for the normal educational process for almost two hundred gymnasium students.

In 1900, a group of Izmail philanthropists established a fund for the construction and maintenance of a new building for the girls’ gymnasium. When the necessary funds were collected, the preparation of the plan and construction estimates was entrusted to Odessa architect V. Schmidt.

Shmidt Valerian (1863 – 1908), master of the realistic landscape, for 1901 – architect at the Office of the Odessa School District.

In the 80s of the 19th century he studied at the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts. In 1890 he was awarded the title “artist of architecture of the II degree”. As an outstanding architect he іs regarded with a number of interesting buildings constructed in the late XIX – early XX centuries according to his designs. For the most part, these are apartment buildings, however, when developing their impressive volumes, V.Schmidt showed a masterful mastery of the architectural detail. The drawing of facades and interior decoration is almost “baroque”, exalted in nature.

Among his projects in Odessa – the apartment house of Raspopov (1899), the house on the street. Sadovaya, 21 (1899), Mayakovskaya str., 3 (1899), Preobrazhenskaya str., 11 (1900), Ekaterininskaya str., 18 (1899), Ekaterininskaya str., 87 (1900), Podbelskogo str., 42 and many others.

From 1895 to 1904 he taught drawing at the Odessa School of Drawing.

In the last years of his life he developed projects for the cities of Moldova, including a project for a female gymnasium for the city of Soroki in the early 20th century.

The construction contract was taken by Izmail residents I. Afutin and N. Dumitsky, who promised to finished the building on August 1, 1902. The task was even completed ahead of schedule – on September 8 (22 according to the new style) in 1901, in the presence of the authorities and citizens of Izmail, a two-story building of burnt brick was consecrated with a one-story extension in the courtyard in the “classicism” architectural style. In the act of the selection committee architect V. Schmidt wrote: “The building makes an extremely pleasant impression in the sense of durability and high quality of all work.” After the move, the gymnasium was transformed from four-grade to eight-grade.

The main entrance from the side of Suvorov Ave. was intended for especially solemn occasions, the gymnasium students entered from the side entrance from the street. Kirova (today – Grecheskaya Street). Current pupils usually get into the building from the street. Bendery, from the yard.

According to the preserved memories of the graduates of the gymnasium, there was a large mirror in the corridor on the ground floor (now there is one also, but a smaller and clearly later period). Nearby hung a marble plaque with the names of people who took part in the construction of the gymnasium building.

On the ground floor there were classrooms, the office of the director. There was a prayer halland in the spacious room where the gym is now equipped. Even those who do not know about the previous purpose of this room are perplexed about the ceiling-supporting Doric columns, which clearly prevent the current generation of schoolchildren from unfolding at full strength in physical education classes.

Two stairs led to the second floor – one wide, marble, covered with a carpet path, for teachers (preserved to this day) and the other one, not so wide. Of course, there is no carpet path a long time ago and now everyone is allowed to climb the main staircase.

During the years of tsarist Russia a board of trustees invariably acted at the gymnasium, which consists of authoritative citizens. For example, in the first years after the construction of a new building, it was headed by the hereditary Honorary Citizen of the city Vasily Filippov.

With the outbreak of World War I in 1914, courses of nurses were placed in the gymnasium building and the British army located the Red Cross Hospital on the ground floor.

During the Romanian period from 1918 to 1940 a female gymnasium was also located here.

With the establishment of Soviet power in our region in 1944, the gymnasium was renamed to secondary school No. 2 (now – school No. 2). Initially, only girls studied in it. Since August 1955, both boys and girls were enrolled in the first classes of the school.

The school building today is an architectural monument of regional significance.

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