Bike Touring Highlight
Stojan Simić, a politician and a businessman, member of the influential Simić family, notable in the 19th century Serbia both in politics and culture, purchased the lot in the late 1830s. It was a piece of marshland which encompassed the modern features of Old Palace, Pioneers Park and Park Aleksandrov. Simić drained the marsh, filled and leveled the terrain and on the northern side of the modern Kralja Milana street constructed a house 1840-42. The edifice became known as the Old Konak. Development of the first Serbian royal compound began in 1843-43, when the ruling prince Alexander Karađorđević purchased the konak with the surrounding garden.
In the 1850s, additional building was constructed next to Old Konak, to the north, and colloquially called Mali dvor or Mali konak ("Little Palace" or "Little Konak"). When the Obrenović dynasty was restored in 1858, they moved in the residences. As an heir apparent, Prince Michael used the Little Palace. The palaces were surrounded by the auxiliary buildings, servants' quarters, horse stables, etc. Ruling prince Miloš Obrenović, Michael's father, decided in 1858 to build a new palace for his son, which was built next to the palace's garden, to the south on the location of modern Novi Dvor, which became known as the Dvor sa kulama ("Palace with towers"). Upon ascending to the throne in 1860, Michael decided to use the Old Konak, while part of the state administration was located in the Palace with towers.
King Milan had the palace itself built between 1882 and 1884, according to the design of Aleksandar Bugarski, in the style of academism of the 19th century, with intention to surpass all existing residences of the Serbian rulers. In order to build the new palace, the Little Palace had to be demolished first. Jointly with the new palace, the Marshall's building (Maršalat) was built behind it. The building was upgraded in 1918, being adapted into the large, semicircular building. The Old Konak, in which Aleksandar and his wife, Queen Draga were assassinated during the 1903 May Coup, was demolished in 1904.
June 11, 2019
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