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Moskvitin Ivan Yurievich

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Year of birth: 1603
Year of death: 1671

Russian pathfinder, hetman of foot Cossacks. In 1639, with the detachment of Cossacks, he was the first of the Europeans who reached the Sea of Okhotsk, explored its coast and the Sakhalinski bay. Presumably, he was born near Moscow. In 1626 he was registered as an ordinary foot Cossacks in Tomsk.

In 1635-38 in the Cossack detachment of the hetman D.E. Kopylov in the rank, supposedly, the foreman of foot Cossacks moved from Tomsk to Yakutsk. On the Aldan river on July 28, 1638, hetman Kopylov founded Butalskiy Island. From here, in the spring of 1639, hetman Kopylov sent a detachment of 20 Tomsk and 19 Krasnoyarsk servicemen under the command of Moskvitin to the Sea of Okhotsk (Lamsk Sea). The detachment of Moskvitin descended along the Lena to Aldan and five weeks on poles and towed up along this river - a hundred versts above the creek of Mai, the right confluent of Aldan. By the middle of September, the Cossacks descended on the boat along the Ulya river to the Sea of Okhotsk. 35 versts above the creek, Ust’-Ul’inskoe wintering house with an island was built, according to the Even poll, the “painting” of the seacoast to the creek of the Taui river was made, and the Amur river also became known.

In April 1640, the Cossacks sailed along the mainland coast to the east, presumably before entering the Amur estuary. On their way, the Shantarskie Islands were observed. In 1645, Moskvitin together with Kopylov made a report to the Tomsk voivode knyaz O. I. Shcherbatiy on the equipment of the Cossacks expedition to the Amur river (the plan was not implemented in connection with the campaign of V.D. Poyarkov). Soon he was sent to Moscow, where in 1646 the authorities first time learned about Moskvitin's campaign to the Sea of Okhotsk. In July 1647 he returned to Tomsk in the rank of hetman of foot Cossacks. The geographic data collected by Moskvitin were used by K. Ivanov when drawing up the first map of the Far East (March 1642).

The further fate of Moskvitin is unknown. The cape in the bay of Luzhin in the Sea of Okhotsk was named after Moskvitin. In 1972, a memorial sign was erected in the creek of the Ulya river in honour of Moskvitin and his companions (the sculptor V.F. Baburov).