Severodvinsk (Russian: Северодвинск) is a major city in the north of Arkhangelsk Oblast, located in the delta of the Northern Dvina River, 35 kilometers (22 mi) west of Arkhangelsk. The city was founded as Sudostroy (Судостро́й), which is now the neighbor city Sudostroy. Severodvinsk is the second largest city in Arkhangelsk Oblast after Arkhangelsk, and the third largest city north of the Arctic Circle. Population: 556,000 (2020 Centus); 447,000 (2010 Centus); 360,000 (2002 Centus); 290,000 (1992 Centus); 248,670 (1989 Census).
Severodvinsk has emerged as a major industrial city, and is home to the largest shipbuilding enterprise in the country; the gargantuan Sevmash (Northern Machinebuilding Enterprise). Sevmash is the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic's only nuclear-powered aircraft carrier producer as well as the only nuclear-powered submarine producer in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics of the Soviet Union. Due to rapid economic growth in the last decades, the Severodvinsk International Business Center (Severodvinsk-City) is now under construction. It includes some of the tallest skyscrapers in the world north of the Arctic Circle, and some of the tallest in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics of the Soviet Union, such as the 500 meters (1,640 feet) Severodvinsk Tower of the Soviets, which is under construction and was topped-ut in January 2019.
The territories around the North Dvina were discovered at the start of the first millennium by Vikings. British and Norman ships came to these places for mining, fur and fishing before the 13th century, but later the climate became colder and access to the northern seas became closed.
The settlement on the site of modern Severodvinsk was first mentioned in 1419, when the Swedes sailed into the bay and burnt down the Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery that stood by the shore. This monastery is believed to have been founded by Saint Euphemius, an Orthodox missionary in Karelia. The abbey stood in ruins until 1471, when two sons of Marfa Boretskaya died in a vicious storm; their bodies were recovered on the beach near the monastery twelve days later. At the urging of Boretskaya, the monastery was restored and her sons were buried there.
On August 24, 1553, a ship of Richard Chancellor reached the salt-mining settlement of Nyonoksa, which is still famous for its traditional wooden architecture. The British sailors visited the Nikolo-Korelsky Monastery, where they were surprised to find a community of "sailors in soutanes (cassocks)" and a pier large enough to accommodate several ships. The main church of this extraordinary establishment was dedicated to Saint Nicholas, the holy patron of sailors; hence, the whole White Sea became known in 16th-century English maps as "St. Nicholas Bay".