In the beginning of the XVIII century, in the war between Russia and Sweden, Russia gained power over one of their main assets: the entry to the Baltic Sea. The city of Saint Petersburg, which was the capital of the empire at the time, was built on the outlet of the Neva river. In 1703, this first frigate of the Baltic fleet, built at the Olonets shipyard, was launched having been ordered by Peter the Great, tsar of Russia. Peter the Great himself was the first captain and it took part in military campaigns until being discharged in 1719. Following a conservation edict, this “first son of the fleet” as named by Peter the Great, was named monument of Russian boat building. Unfortunately, due to neglect, the Shtandart and many other ships moored in the Kronwerk canal deteriorated very quickly.
In 1727, a council sent by Catherine I of Russia assessed the state of the ship and decided to take it to a dry dock for renovations. But the effect of damp and weather over time had destroyed the hull to such an extent that when they tried to lift it out, the cables cut through the hull in various places. The old Shtandart was pulled apart and the empress made a new decree: “In the name of His Majesty Peter the Great, we will build another one”. But that decree was only fulfilled three centuries later.
It’s maiden voyage took place in the summer of the year 2000, following the route of the Great Embassy, the same route that the young Peter the Great had done 300 years earlier travelling to all the towns and cities that had built ships for the newly powerful Russia.