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Kurgan(ko͞orgän`), city (1989 pop. 356,000), capital of Kurgan region, W Siberian Russia, on the Tobol River. Kurgan is the important junction of the western branches of the Trans-Siberian RR. Its factories produce agricultural and road-building equipment, machine tools, and food products. Kurgan became a town in the 17th cent. There are many ancient burial mounds (Turkic Kurgan) in the area.
a city, the center of Kurgan Oblast, RSFSR. Located on the high left bank of the Tobol River (in the Ob’ basin). It is a railroad junction with lines to Cheliabinsk, Omsk, and Sverdlovsk. Population, 263,000 (1972; 53,000 in 1939; 146,000 in 1959).
Located on the site of present-day Kurgan was the fortified sloboda (tax-exempt settlement) of Tsarevo Gorodishche, founded in 1553. In 1738, in connection with the establishment of the Ishim Line, this fort was eliminated. In 1782 the sloboda was renamed the city of Kurgan. Passing through Kurgan was an extensive trade in agricultural products; the city had small-scale industry—for the most part, the processing of agricultural raw materials.
During the prewar five-year plans Kurgan was transformed into a major industrial, scientific, and cultural center. During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45) the industry of Kurgan worked for defense; many industrial enterprises and people were brought to Kurgan from the country’s captured western regions. During the postwar decades in Kurgan there was further development of the economy, science, and culture. In the years of Soviet power Kurgan has become an important center for various types of machine building (including the Kurgansel’mash Plant and plants producing wheeled tractors, buses, chemical machinery, electric armatures, road-building machinery, and woodworking machine tools) and the chemical industry (a pharmaceuticals plant). Also located here are enterprises of the food-processing and light industries, including a large meat combine, milling and poultry combines, a creamery, a leather-goods plant, and knitted-goods, clothing, and footwear factories.
Kurgan has machine-building, agricultural, and pedagogical institutes; machine-building, construction, and agricultural technicums; and schools of medicine, music, and education and culture. Also in Kurgan are a drama theater, a puppet theater, and a museum of local lore.