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A Visit to Mikoyan Brothers' Museum

Nestled amidst the picturesque village of Sanahin, Armenia, lies the Mikoyan Brothers' Museum, dedicated to two brothers who left an indelible mark on Soviet history. This museum honors the remarkable achievements of Anastas Mikoyan, a prominent politician who rose through the ranks of the Soviet government, and Artem Mikoyan, a brilliant aircraft designer who co-created the legendary MiG fighter jets.

Sanahin village is renowned not only for its 10th-century Sanahin Monastery complex, a UNESCO World Heritage site, but also as the birthplace of Anastas and Artem Mikoyan. Artem was a renowned aircraft designer and co-founder of the Mikoyan-Gurevich (MiG) design bureau alongside Mikhail Gurevich. Anastas was a Soviet statesman and long-serving Politburo member, known for his roles in the Soviet food industry and international diplomacy, particularly during the Cuban Missile Crisis. He became a member of the Communist Party’s Central Committee in 1923 and remained at the highest levels of power through the eras of Lenin, Stalin, Khrushchev, and Brezhnev.

MiG-21 "Fishbed" is on display outside the museum

The Mikoyan Brothers' House-Museum was founded in 1971 to honor the contributions of Anastas and Artem Mikoyan to their homeland. The museum and memorial were opened on June 17, 1982. On its opening day, two of the most influential exhibits were brought from Moscow: a MiG plane and Artem Mikoyan's official car. Over the years, the house-museum has been enriched with additional exhibits. The museum was founded by Nushik Mikoyan, the daughter of Mikoyan's uncle. In 2017, the museum underwent renovation funded by the "Looking Forward" fund.

The museum is conventionally divided into two sections: one dedicated to Artem and the other to the life and activities of Anastas Mikoyan. It houses a multilingual library that includes books on the brothers' activities, which visitors can use. Thematic books from various countries and archival documents are also available.

A notable exhibit is a pilot's uniform donated by Peter Ostapenko, a test pilot for the MiG bureau who was involved in test flights from the MiG-19 to the MiG-31, setting eight world records. The pressurized uniform on display has remained largely unchanged for over 50 years, with similar uniforms still in use today.

Visitors can explore models, blueprints, and photographs showcasing the evolution of MiG fighter jets, which played a pivotal role in Soviet aviation history.

The museum features a GAZ-12 ZIM limousine once owned by Anastas Mikoyan, offering a glimpse into the lifestyle of a prominent Soviet leader

The Mikoyan Brothers' Museum serves as a testament to the power of innovation, ambition, and the enduring Armenian spirit. The museum reminds visitors that Armenia, a nation rich in history and culture, has also produced remarkable individuals who have shaped the world stage.


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