Situated on the right bank of the Irtysh, at its confluence with the Om, at an altitude of 285 ft., and on the Trans-Siberian railway, 1862 m. via Chelyabinsk from Moscow, and 586 m. WSW of Tomsk, it is the meeting-place of the highways to middle Russia, Orenburg and Turkestan. Steamers ply down the Irtysh and the Ob, and up the former to the Altai towns and Lake Zaisan.
The climate is dry and relatively temperate, but marked by violent snow-storms and sand-storms. The average temperatures are, for the year, 31° F.; for January, 5°; for July, 68°; the annual rainfall is 12~4 in.
The industry in Omsk includes oil industry, chemical industry, machine-building and metal-working industries. The industry suffered a sharp decline after 1991, and the total output in 1994 hardly surpassed 50% of its 1991 level. The city hosts Omsk State University, Omsk State Technical University, Omsk State Pedagogical University, Omsk State Medical Academy and Omsk State Agricultural University.
The fort of Omsk was erected in 1716 to protect the blockhouses on the Russian frontier, along the Ishim and the Irtysh. In consequence of the frequent incursions of the Kirghiz about the end of the 18th century, stronger earthworks were erected on the right bank of the Om; but these have now almost entirely disappeared. Omsk was the capital of the province of Akmolinsk, capital of western Siberia from 1839 to 1882, and before World War I the capital of the general-governorship of the Steppes.
Omsk Region (Russian Omsk Oblast, pop. 2,176,000 est. 1995) is geographically located in the south-west of Siberian lowlands. It is bounded by Kazakhstan on the south, the Tyumen Oblast on the west and on the north and the Novosibirsk and Tomsk Oblasts on the east.
Its territory stretches for 600 kilometers in the north-south direction and for 300 kilometers in the east-west direction and occupies the area of about 140,000 km². The major water artery is the navigable Irtysh River.
The climate is continental. Average January temperatures range from -19 to -18 °C. Summers are hot. Average July temperatures range from +18 to +19 C, and can reach up to +35 and even +40 °C. There are many sunny days. Based on an article from 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.