The Smolensk Cathedral was built on the place of the appearance of the miraculous Smolensk Icon of Our Lady, which occurred at the south city gate in 1703. According to a legend, Methodius Ivanov who guarded the gate on the night of October 1 to 2 saw the icon.
A small chapel was erected on that place almost at once. And in 1705 there appeared a small wooden church. The massive Smolensk Cathedral, which survived to our days, was built in the period from 1727 to 1763.
The upper part of the cathedral was consecrated in honour of the saints Peter and Paul. The architecture of the 2-floor cathedral, with integrated bell tower, is characteristic of the churches of the northern Ukraine. The main sacred thing of the cathedral is the Smolensk Icon of Our Lady or Odigitria.
The Smolensk Cathedral was closed in 1936. At first it was used as a warehouse. However, during World War II the cathedral building was severely damaged by artillery and could no longer be used even a warehouse.
There were two unsuccessful attempts to blow up the building, in 1958 and in 1974. As a result of the last attempt there was damaged the nearby school so it was decided to take no more chances and just fence the ruins of the cathedral. In 1980 there began the reconstruction of the cathedral and in 1992 it was returned to the Church.