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Introducing Starocherkassk

Founded in 1593, Starocherkassk (Old Cherkassk) was the Don Cossack capital for two centuries. Once a fortified town of 20, 000, it's now a farming village with a main street restored to near 19th-century appearance.

Allegedly, Peter the Great met a drunken Cossack here sitting on a barrel, wearing only a rifle. This image of a soldier who'd sooner lose his clothes than his gun so impressed the tsar that he commissioned the scene as the Don Cossack army seal.