According to The Columbia Encyclopedia, Volgograd, formerly known as Stalingrad, is a Russian city on the Volga River in southeast European Russia. Volgograd is the capital of the Russian region of Volgograd.
The Columbia Encyclopedia states that Volgograd is a major rail center as well as an important transshipment point with a port that handles coal, fish, lumber, oil and ore. The city became Stalingrad in 1925, named after the Soviet leader Stalin. It was renamed Volgograd in 1961 after Nikita Khrushchev denounced Stalin's dictatorial rule. The city is known for having been the site of the Battle of Stalingrad, a major turning point in World War II.