Trip to the Frank Kanton by Alexander Spack in May 2009
View of the Volga German village of Merkel, now Makarovka.
The Volga German colony of Merkel was founded in 1766. Back in 1913 the village had 167 household and 2469 inhabitants; it also had a Lutheran church of its own. During the Tzars' reign the village's official Russian name was Makarovka. After the Autonomous Republic of the Volga Germans was established, the village was officially called by its German name of Merkel. Before the war there were about 250 households and 1,500 people in the village. After the deportation of the local Germans in 1941 the settlement was yet again renamed. It has been known as Makarovka ever since.
Today there are merely 10 houses left in the village; some of them have been abandoned.
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