Rychkov, Petr Ivanovich
Born Oct. 1 (12), 1712, in Vologda; died Oct. 15 (26), 1777, in Ekaterinburg, now Sverdlovsk. Russian scholar, author of works on geography, economics, and history. Son of a merchant. First corresponding member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1759).
Rychkov worked in the Orenburg region from the 1730’s. From 1734 to 1737 he took part in the Orenburg Expedition led by I. K. Kirilov and, later, by V. N. Tatishchev. His major work, Orenburg Topography (two parts, 1762), is an explanatory text for the maps of Orenburg Province compiled by I. Krasil’nikov in 1755. It is one of the first detailed compilations of a region’s history and geography and was of great importance for the birth of economic geography in Russia. Rychkov also wrote on the history, economy, and ethnography of the peoples of the Volga region, the Urals, and the Caspian region.