7 Facts of the Leningrad Blockade

27th of January was the day when the siege of Leningrad was completely lifted.

27th of January was the last of the 872 days of the blockade, hunger, and pain for hundred thousands of people.

27th of January is a Russian holiday called Days of Military Honor.

It's been 70 years since then...

To pay tribute to those who went through this horrible event in the history of Russia, we are posting 7 facts of the Leningrad Blockade.

1. The Blockade was for 872 days, that's almost 2.4 years - it started on September 8, 1941 and it was lifted on January 18, 1943. The city started with low supplies of foods and fuels. The only way out of the blockade was through the Lake Ladoga, or it's also called Ladozhskoe (it's the largest fresh water lake in Europe). It was difficult to bring enough food for everyone in the city. During the first winter of the siege, hunger took lives of hundred thousands of people.

2. 630,000 (six hundred and thirty thousand) of Leningraders died during the siege. 3% of deaths were encountered on bombings and artillery shelling...97% of people died of hunger... Dead corpses laying on the streets became a part of the everyday life. The majority of fallen people were buried at the Piskarevskoye Memorial Cemetery.

3. 125 grams (1/4 lb) of bread a day. That was the daily bread ration for every person. Workers received 250 grams.
4. -18C (-2F) was the average monthly temperature during the first winter of the siege. In April of 1942 the snow reached a mark of 52cm (20.5inch). Sewer and water supply were turned off. The heating in the houses was off. The only source of heat at homes was a potbelly stove (pechka burzhuika). People were burning everything, including furniture, books.

5. four train cars of cats were brought to the city to save the food supplies from the rodents. In January of 1943 the just freed city received 4 cars with cats from the city of Yaroslavl. There is even a monument to cats on the Malaya Sadovaya street in Saint Petersburg.

6. 1.5 millions evacuated - there were three waves of civilian population evacuated during the blockade of Leningrad. Many people didn't want to leave their homes. Almost half the population of the city was evacuated.
7. 1,500 loud-speakers were installed for alert messages throughout the city. Also, the city radio network aired alert messages, too. The city government forbade to turn off radio at homes.