Searching for Mrs. Loshadkina in the Volga and  Don regions


In late summer  1916 Czar Nicolai II received a report by two Russian air force pilots concerning  the sighting of  biblical Noah’s Ark on mount Ararat, which at the time was in the Armenian territory. The Czar was very impressed and interested  at the report and decided to send to the Mountain two groups of selected men, between the end of 1916 and early 1917, with the purpose to find the wreckage, to recover  samples and to take photographs. The expedition turned out well despite the loss of many human life because of many difficulties such as hard climb, climatic conditions, landslides,  etc, moreover those who were of noble origin  perished first because were not trained to suffer hard conditions as on the contrary were the soldiers. Unfortunately the Bolshevik revolution broke out exactly that time, and the opponents of the Czar regime caused all the members of the expedition to be decimated, furthermore they covered up the report, and the whole documentation  was made to disappear.  The idea of the atheistic Bolshevicks was to cancel any evidence in favour of Christian faith and the proof collected by the expedition on Ararat would have put them into an awkward position. Very few survived that massacre and among those who did was Batov Fedor Frolovich born on1895, Galina Batov Loshadkina’s grandfather.


Batov Fedor Frolovich and his wife Maria Vassilievna     

during the wedding in Tiblisi in 1917

In 1994 after the fall of the communist regime, the whole story was at long last published in Russian territory by the Muscovite newspaper "Science and Religion" which drew the story from an article appeared over 50 years earlier in the United States by the New  Eden Magazine (1939).

In  the USA the 1939 article was written by Roscovitsky one of the two Russian pilots who sighted Noah’s Ark in 1916. That pilot later had moved to  Usa becoming a Christian preacher. The 1939 article told the whole story of the Czar’s expedition and of the two Russian air force pilots.

In 1945 the New York branch of "Rosseya" a White Russia newspaper published another article written by the colonel Alexander Koor former commander of the 19° Petropavlosky Russian regiment, quartered close to Mount Ararat in 1915- 1916. In his article colonel Koor confirmed the Czar’s expedition major event.

Yet, in the article published in  1994 by Muscovite newspaper, the editorial staff maintained they could not confirm the truthfulness of the story.  

Galina Loshadkina after having read the 1994 article  immediately decided to write an convincing letter to the newspaper editing staff  stating to have full right to confirm the reported story to be true because her grandfather Fedor had been a member of the Czar expedition and had told her the whole adventure. How he saw and touched the ark, spotted on the Mount Ararat (in 1994 belonging to Turkish territory).

Loshadkina in her letter quoted Serafimovich  the village in the Volgograd region where her grandfather lived and inhabited. The Muscovite newspaper published entirely her letter of reply.


A Russian gentleman, Mr. Nicolay, after having visited our website  sent me the whole article in Russian language. My wife Paola who knows well that language read it to me and both were touched by the story. Reading that article written in its original language confirmed  once more us that the ancient biblical Ark rests on Mount Ararat . 

Then we decided to track down Mrs Loshadkina applying to a Moscow   TV station. But we soon understood that the best thing to do was to go in the same place and to ask information at Serafimovich city hall the small village where Mrs. Loshadkina’s grandfather had lived. Not being able to leave my work my wife with a certain determination and courage decided to go alone.  At first  my wife decided to get information in Volgograd city but it was soon clear that in spite of the Russian Empire downfall since than politically nothing had changed. To have just simple private information she would face common bureaucratic delays. Having grown up in an ex Soviet Republic my wife knew by experience the red tape.  She decided anyway to spend some days in Volgograd .  Ironically the receptionist at the hotel where she stayed came from the small Serafimovich village. She told my wife not only to have heard about Batov family but also that one of the  family was a teacher at the local school. Providentially things were going the right way.  


Afterwards Paola took a bus directed to Serafimovich almost 300 kilometres far across the steppe.  As soon as she arrived she went to the city hall meeting the right lady at the right moment. That lady’s teacher when she was a little girl was Batov Fedor Folovich’son, namely Alexei Batov. That kind lady asked a driver to take my wife to an old Batov’s relative home.

There my wife met an eighty year-old courteous lady who kindly welcome my wife and informed her that Mrs. Loshadkina had moved to a little village 100 kilometres west of Serafimovich, in the Rostov region. The old lady immediately called her daughter and  asked her to drive my wife to Mrs. Loshadkina home. Her daughter initially was a bit reluctant and hesitated at the idea to travel 100 kilometres but her mother insisted in an almost providential way. She had probably understood that the meeting was very significant. The old lady’s daughter, her husband and my wife left by car and drove 100  kilometres in the middle of the widest steppe.  Finally they reached Galina Loshadkina home. The lady at that unexpected visit  was amazed and satisfied  as well.  She was amazed that an Italian lady had travelled from Italy to meet her, just to get direct evidence of his grandfather experience with Noahs’Ark and all this after a 17 years silence since the article appeared in a Muscovite newspaper, in 1994. My wife Paola, and her fellow travellers, were welcomed as special guests, were offered supper and  pleasantly entertained in conversation about Loshadkina’s grandfather experience.



Mrs. Loshadkina told my wife that after the experience on Mount Ararat her grandfather’s life had changed a lot. He had been in constant danger owing to the Bolshevik’s intention to exterminate the people taking part in the Czar’s expedition. To such an extent that to talk about "Noah’s Ark on Mount Ararat " became a taboo subject to whomever.


Furthermore he was deeply touched by the death of many companions in climbing the Mountain and both on the way up and down.  Grandfather told that the Czar sent up the mountain  selected and faultless men especially from the spiritual point of view. Grandfather Fedor was married according to the couple parents’ customs that were in use at the time, but to be allowed to take part of the expedition he was invited and obliged to attend a new wedding ceremony according to the  Christian-Orthodox  rite in a Tiblisi church. This explains the deep religious spirit that urged the Czar  to organize the expedition on Ararat.


Fedor later on,  entered a four years religion class which went against communist principles, for this reason he was accused of betraying his country and was exiled to forced works for three years between 1931 and the 1933 making Bielomorkanal, a canal 227 kilometres long connecting Baltic sea to  White sea .Fedor who had taken part in the first world conflict, for patriotism had to take up arms again to defend his country in the second one...! In his life he used to be a baker so during the two wars he carried on with his craft. 

When she was a child in the 60’s Galina attended the school and one day her teacher during the lesson spoke about the Ararat mountain, its history, and that once it was in Armenian Republic territory. Back home from school Loshadkina told her grandfather what she had learned from her teacher about Ararat.It was in that occasion that he told his grand-daughter in confidence about his experience on that mountain. He told her to have reached the Ark with many efforts in a very impervious place, and to have entered inside the Ark. He and his group were not the first to get there because visible traces  were left by other people (probably Armenian shepherds). He said that it took two-three men to embrace a main beam inside of the ark. From  the analysis of wood samples collected it resulted to be Oleander. Furthermore he told her that under the Ark a small glacial pond had formed and drinking that very cold water coming from the pond he claimed made him to feel strong.                                                                                                                                                                  The following days with a great enthusiasm the little girl Galina reported her teacher her grandfather’s story, but the teacher admonished her not to tell it anymore to anybody, otherwise her grandfather’s life would be in danger.


Family Batov. In the left down Fedor in the centre the lady 

Galina Batov now Loshadkina. 1954 photo

My wife during the interview told Loshadkina that a French explorer had found a piece of wood on Ararat and that we also possessed a very hard  partially petrified small piece. This detail recalled the lady what had happened, when she was a little girl. She told my wife that one day at her grandparents home, she noted in a dark corner a chest guarded with a lot of care. Out of curiosity she opened that sort of mysterious box and inside, among a lot of her grandfather’s personal things, she saw a piece of hard wood like a stone. She asked her grandmother to be allowed to throw away that kind of old stone but her grandmother suddenly reacted brusquely warning the child absolutely not to touch it anymore!


Now 50 years later Mrs. Loshadkina  understood the reasons of her grandmother’s rough reaction and what was the piece of rock she had found in the old chest. It was nothing else but a piece of wood taken from Noah’s Ark that her grandfather collected during the Czar expedition and jealously guarded it in a safe chest.

Unfortunately the grandparents’ house was sold and the box  remained inside, now nobody knows what had happened to it. Also her grandfather's sketches had been lost in many removals. Grandfather first and grandmother later, suffered from ictus with facial paralysis. Both of them before dying wished to tell their offspring something really important but they could not owing to the paralysing disease.Most probably it was about the content of the chest or of about something hidden somewhere  in the house. Unfortunately it was custom at the time to keep  secrets to be revealed only  at the death-bed.  Grandfather died in 1969 and grandmother 10 years later. 


Galina Loshadkina with the newspaper of the article about Ark 


 After a beautiful and exciting conversation Mrs. Galina told my wife Paola that her visit and the subject discussed had deeply touched  her heart! Furthermore Mrs. Galina gave my wife a picture of  her grandfather and  she promised to write down anything she could recall and that she would try to track down an acquaintance of her now living in the Caucasian city Krasnodar, who might know facts and events related to Noah’s Ark story.

 She told me in confidence that all these years she had wished to get in touch with that acquaintance but she had not, probably for lack of a specific incentive. As soon as  Galina will give us the telephone number  we will try to get in touch with that person to have, if possible, more evidence. 

 Paola gave Galina some pictures of mine taken on Ararat one of which near the lake of Kop . Looking at it the lady said that her grandfather too had crossed that lake. Then my wife said goodbye to her guests thanking them for their warm welcome and together with the couple of friends went back to Serafimovich where she stopped overnight. The next day by bus she travelled to Volgograd she stayed a couple of days in Moscow to call on the editorial staff of "Science and Religion" newspaper to have, if possible, more information, but she did not find the same warm welcome. She was given nothing else but a copy of the same Russian article we already had.

 Roberto Tiso

 Russian original article of Science and Religion of the 1994 copy N° 1







Answer of the Mrs Loshadkina published of Science and Religion to the 1994 N°7



 Translation of the article of Science and Religion 1994 N°1 and N° 7


 In August 1916 the royal family, and Russia were given an amazing sign of the terrible times to come, certainly the most amazing sign from heaven, ever imagined. It is not easy to understand the essence of that sign, but surely once again a great miracle originated from it.               Both before and after those days (and up to now) many expeditions have been arranged with the specific purpose to look for Noah's Ark on Ararat. Yet only those who climbed the Mountain with a different purpose came across the Ark. Strangely expeditions which eagerly attempted to find it have all been doomed to failure. It has never occurred that so many persons reached the Ark and documented it in such a complete manner as did the task force ordered by the Czar.

It is also unbelievable that the whole material and the evidences collected by a variety of witnesses on many occasions always got lost and almost nothing has been handed down to posterity. The Armenia Summer of 1916 had been very hot. That year glaciers on Ararat retreated as never before.In 1939 a Russian military pilot Vladimir Roscovitsky,  when he was an Orthodox preacher in the United States, related the facts that happened during summer 1916 to the Californian Journal “New Eden”, The event immediately got a worldwide amazing success (except for The Soviet Union which did not publish  the Roscovitsky’s account until 1994, when the first number of the journal "Science and Religion» divulgated a translation into Russian [38]). Below, we quote a summary of the article which appeared in The Soviet Union.

 "We were a group of Russian aviators and were based on a temporary airfield about 25 miles northwest of Mount Ararat . The weather those days was very hot and dry. Even lizards, hidden in the shade of rocks, gasped for breath. Only occasionally a gentle breeze, rising clouds of dust, swayed the sparse vegetation in that area.

Above the ridges clouds  could be seen, and a little higher the immaculate peak of Mount Ararat , covered with perpetual snow. Into that insupportable heat  we longed to cool ourselves in that snow. When the Officer Commanding came in he told  us that the aircraft number seven was set up and ready for high-altitude tests, so my fellow soldier and I were invited to perform the tests. At last we could escape that heat! We did not lose time to warm the engine up because the heat of the sun had turned the plane almost white-hot. We flew over the area a while until we reached  the altitude of 14,000 feet and for a short time we kept it to get used to that level..

I looked to my right toward the beautiful snowy peak, which was at that moment only slightly above us, and for some reason, that I can not explain, I decided to direct the plane straight toward the peak.The co-pilot looked at me surprised by my manoeuvre, but the noisy did not allow him to ask what my intention was. And generally at the speed of 100/120 miles per hour our position would have changed little. Looking down  giant stones seemed to me like fortresses springing up from the mountain feet, and I recalled that I had already heard about it.

At that sight I thought back to the ancient legend telling of Pilgrims that many centuries before Christ used to climb the Mountain to get to the Ark and scrape the pitch which they shaped in amulets.The legend tells also that many of those Pilgrims never went back because they died on the Mountain struck by lightning, We flew twice around the snowy dome at the same level, then we decided to direct the plane straight down  in direction of the mountain southern face.  In that precise moment we saw a lake, looking just like a little emerald-coloured jewel, but still covered with ice on the shaded side.

We flew again in circle and back to take another look at the lake. Suddenly my fellow shouted excitedly pointing to the spot where the lake spilled over the edge. I myself looked and was astonished at what I saw.What is that? I shouted. A submarine? No. We saw a wooden structure coloured black made of short thick poles, the upper side was rounded, and all along the top ran a  structure   about 1 meter ( 3 feet ) high. A strange construction! Which seemed to have been planned to support enormous shock waves.

It was like a gigantic log made to keep afloat in a stormy sea. The short and thick poles seemed to have been arranged to resist powerful waves. It was as long as a house-block and it could be compared to a modern military ship. A quarter of the structure was submerged in the lake. The front and the back side of the vessel was partly dismantled. There was a huge opening of a door - about twenty square feet - but the door was missing. The opening seemed too large (disproportionate) modern ships rarely have doors even half of that. After that unusual air exploration we beat all speed records, flying back to the airfield  trying to gain some of the time we lost on the mountain"

This was written in 1939 by Vladimir Roskovitsky, a Russian emigrant, in the article published by the journal «New Eden». He told also that in response to his exciting and enthusiastic report of the sighting, their fellow soldiers  mocked him heavily. Only the Officer Commanding his air group did not laugh, on the contrary he offered to fly together back to the mountain to better inspect the mysterious object.

 When he came again back to the air field he said:  

"That strange ship is Noah's Ark. It has been  there for about five thousand years and for nine or ten months a year it lies frozen into the ice and can not be pulled out, it has been into a natural fridge all that time. You have made the most amazing discovery of the century!"

 After that, according to Roskovitsky, the Officer Commanding sent a report about the discovery to Petrograd . After reading it, the Emperor sent to Ararat two detachments of soldiers with orders to ascend the mountain to the place where the Ark had been discovered. A hundred men, climbing over deep crags, reached a rocky crest (ridge) while a fifty other men reached another crest. Six weeks later the largest group of those men reached the Ark , and the small one was only able to observe it in the distance.

Moreover Roskovitsky told the newspaper what follows:

"They  (the group sent by the Czar) made detailed measurements, drawings and took many photographs. Inside the Ark they saw hundreds of small rooms  and a couple  very large with high ceilings. Everything had been heavily caulked with a substance similar to wax (a kind of shellac), showing a skilled piece of work thanks to a civilization who knew the state of the art.

To build the Ark had been used oleander wood, which belongs to the family of cypress and does not rot, which explains its excellent condition, together with the fact that it was caulked and frozen. A little upwards  men found logs taken from one side the Ark partly burnt and shaped  in the form  of a shelter. Inside it they found rough stones, put up in the guise of an altar, just like in ancient times Jews used to erect to offer sacrifices. Perhaps a lightning burst into flames that altar and  the shelter: logs were badly charred and the roof was completely destroyed.

A few days later  the Czar got the  expedition’s report, he  and his  government was overthrown by Bolsheviks who took over the country.nThe new regime did not allow to publish or divulgate the report, the  photos and the whole material collected, moreover it is possible that everything  had been destroyed ... ".  

Thus Roskovitsky’s article ends. In 1994 a Russian translation of it had been spread in Soviet Union by the journal "Science and Religion"  55 years after it had been broadcasted in the U.S.A. The Editors of Science and Religion in a short comment to the article, expressed regret that it was not possible to verify its authenticity. Shortly after the publication of the editorial the Journal received a letter [39]. We present it here as published in 1994 in the n.7 of  "Science and Religion»:

 “I have just read the article "Searchers of the ark” (by Vladimir Roskovitsky) and the way you  have concluded it: "It is not possible to confirm or deny its authenticity". I can not help raising my voice against this statement. I have to confirm the report! It's true! Everything happened  exactly like that! I am so  sure of what I am saying because one of the members of the Russian expedition on Mount Ararat was my grandfather Mr. Batov Fedor Frolovich, who was born in 1895.  

I still keep his military record, where it is registered his recruitment  in 1915 at Ust-Bear (now Serafimovich Volgograd region) in the 15th Regiment of Turkestan, 4th division of Turkestan . Maybe this can help searching for historical data? In 1959-1960 when I still attended school during history classes, I learned about Noah's Ark with my history teacher. She was very special (she had attended high school before the Bolshevik revolution and used to teach us a lot of informal lessons).I told my grandfather what I had learned from my teacher.

It was on that occasion that my grandfather related me the facts happened at the time he was serving in the Caucasus when Russian pilots saw something like a ship on Mount Ararat . My grandfather was in  the expedition ordered by the Zar. He went on relating the facts. They climbed the mountain from both sides. Now it is difficult to remember all the details of the conversation. I can recall that my  grandfather told me  about  the smaller group made up of expert climbers. Unfortunately all of them perished swept by an enormous avalanche.

My grandfather and his companions too faced avalanches,  deep clefts and crevasses along the track they were walking.  Many of his group perished too. Also my grandfather  ran the risk of falling inside a precipice, fortunately his companions  helped him. My grandfather told me also about the great  respect prevailing between them. Finally they reached the goal. My grandfather told me to the smallest detail what they saw, even  drawing sketches. He explained to me  that the Ark was enormous  and unusual. I imagined a modern ship, but my grandfather drew it  again and patiently stressed that it looked like a huge box with openings for ventilation on the top. My grandfather told  me that they had taken  many  photos, and made all sorts of measurements, moreover they  collected samples by scraping various sections. He also took part in all that activity. He did not grow tired of telling me.

"You never know how very clever and smart were the persons of our group”.

I was very surprised of what he told about  the caulker  on the walls that it looked like wax, but it was not. I think by now  scientists may have discovered the chemical composition of that substance analyzing the samples scraped away. I well remember about oleander wood, which the Ark was made of,  because our neighbours had grown one of those trees bearing pink flowers.

Descending Ararat was more difficult than climbing. Many others lost their  lives. The detailed report of the expeditions was sent to the Zar together with the documents, the samples and a list of the members of the group drawn up in order to award people with an important  praise by The Zar. The name of my grandfather  was in that list.  In a very short time  the October Revolution broke out plunging The Soviet Union  into chaos and my grandfather had to struggle against a difficult situation to survive as did the Ark against giant waves.

For fear he never told anybody the story of  the expedition, moreover, he asked me to do the same, still keeping the hope: "Maybe I will not live up to that time, but you will  hear to talk  about the events I lived on Ararat. Remember always that Noah's Ark is not a myth. I saw it myself and these hands touched it. Remember very well that it is on Mount Ararat ". Grandfather died in 1969. Until today I kept this  secret inside my heart. Now, on behalf of my grandfather Theodore Batov Frolovich, I  proclaim that the article by Vladimir Roskovitsky is about a true event happened for sure.I really want to give moral  support  to brave people who nowadays organize expeditions to Mount Ararat . My grandfather was not a climber. But with God's help he was able  to reach  and see Noah's Ark , others people can take his example.

 G. Loshadkina.