Tolkacheva, Natalia Vladlenovna – Candidate of Science (History), Associate Professor of the Department of History and Philosophy at the Kamchatka State Technical University.
The paper characterizes the main periods of study of Kamchatka history by Russian historians.
The first period, from the 1730s to the end of the 18th century, is characterized by the formation of three major trends in historiography: official - (noble) (G.F. Miller, I.E. Fisher, I.K. Kirilov) who treated the history of joining of Kamchatka as conquest, educational (S.P. Krasheninnikov) who put forward the thesis of interference of cultures of the Russian and the native people and democratic (M.V. Lomonosov and A.N. Radishchev) who emphasized the role of people in the union and development of Siberia and admitted the generally peaceful character of this process.
In the second period (19th - beginning of 20th century) new trends formed along with the existing trends - liberal (bourgeois) (G.I. Spassky, S.M. Soloviev, A.S. Sgibnev, N.V. Sljunin, V.P. Margaritov), critical (P.I. Nebol'sin, S.S. Shashkov), regional (N.M. Yadrintsev, P.M. Golovachyov), populist (V.I. Iohelson, V.N. Tjushov) and Marxist (G.V. Plekhanov, V.I. Lenin). The base of sources and subjects of researches extended.
During this period historians P.A. Slovtsov and A.P. Shchapov together with regional trend representatives criticized the G.F. Miller scheme of colonization of Siberia (Kamchatka).
The third period - 1917-1991 is characterized by transition of historians to the positions of Marxist methodology. The first historians-Marxists (L.S. Ursynovich, P. Vasenko, and S.B. Okun') continued to adhere to G.F. Miller's scheme about the colonization of Kamchatka and saw only its fatal consequences. S.V. Bahrushin reconsidered G.F. Miller's scheme and specified the industrial development of Siberia by trading capital as the basic streamline of colonization. The thesis of V.I. Shunkov on labor colonization of Siberia, peaceful character of the process of joining became conventional, but with regards to the history of Kamchatka it is debatable.
The fourth period that started in the 1990s and is characterized by the growth of source base and search for the methodology and new subjects.
Key words: Russian historiography of the history of Kamchatka, discovering and joining Kamchatka to Russia, exploration/development of Kamchatka, indigenous peoples, theoretical-methodological approaches.