Pol, Oleksander

Image - Oleksander Pol

Pol, Oleksander [Поль, Олександер; Pol'], b 1 September 1832 in Malooleksandrivske, Verkhnodniprovsk county, Katerynoslav guberniia, d 7 August 1890 in Katerynoslav. Entrepreneur and collector of historical artifacts. The grandson of a German settler, Pol recognized the potential of the Kryvyi Rih Iron-ore Basin deposits and played an important role in their development. His true passion, however, was regional history—possibly because his mother was Hetman Pavlo Polubotok’s granddaughter. After finishing law studies at Dorpat University, he travelled throughout the Katerynoslav region, learning its history, taking part in archeological digs, and collecting artifacts. He pursued this hobby to the point of near financial ruin. Eventually he gathered a collection of 5,000 artifacts from prehistoric times to Cossack period, estimated to be worth 200,000 rubles. After his death, Pol’s collection was donated to the Museum of Antiquities of Katerynoslav Gubernia, which was subsequently named in his honor; it is now the Dnipropetrovsk National Historical Museum in the city of Dnipro.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 5 (1993).]

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