a city; administrative center of Verkho-tur’e Raion, Sverdlovsk Oblast, RSFSR. Located on the left bank of the Tura River (Ob’ basin), 6 km from the Verkhotur’e station on the Serov-Nizhnii Tagil line. Population, 10,900 (1967). There are plants producing rosin and turpentine, ice skates, and butter. The Verkhotur’e Hydroelectric Power Plant is near Verkhotur’e, and lumber is procured in the region.
Verkhotur’e was founded in 1598 as a fortified settlement on a high river bank in connection with the opening of the new and shorter route to Siberia along the Tura River. The city played an important role as a transit center in the trade between European Russia and Siberia (until the second half of the 18th century) and also in the settlement of the Transural area. A customs house was built in Verkhotur’e, and travel to Siberia via any other route was prohibited. The importance of the city was undermined when customs collections were abolished and when the Verkhotur’e route was closed in 1763. Ancient structures erected by Russian masters, such as remnants of the citadel and of the buildings of the Nikolaevskii monastery (early 17th century), have been preserved.