Galagan, Hryhorii

Image - Hryhorii Galagan

Galagan, Hryhorii [Ґалаґан, Григорій], b 15 August 1819 in Kyiv, d 25 September 1888 in Kyiv. Ukrainophile civic leader, ethnographer, and patron of Ukrainian culture. A large landholder in the Poltava region and Chernihiv region, he was personally acquainted with Taras Shevchenko, Mykhailo Maksymovych, Panteleimon Kulish, Volodymyr Antonovych, and many members of the Hromada of Kyiv. As a judge and a member of government agencies preparing and supervising the 1861 reforms and, from 1882, as a member of the State Council, he defended the interests of the Ukrainian peasantry. From 1865 until his death he was an active promoter of zemstvos. In Sokyryntsi, Pryluky county, he opened and subsidized the first peasant savings and loan association in Ukraine. He initiated and financially assisted the creation of elementary schools in Pryluky county and, in 1874, the Pryluky gymnasium. In memory of his son Pavlo, he founded Galagan College in Kyiv in 1871. A great benefactor and patron of the arts, he had buildings constructed in the traditional Ukrainian style, bought art works (including some by Shevchenko), supported the development of choral singing and vertep drama, and financially contributed to the journal Kievskaia starina. In 1873–5 he was president of the Southwestern Branch of the Imperial Russian Geographic Society.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 2 (1989).]

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