“Ugra Land” is the historic place-name of the district - "Ugra". First people living "on half-night countries" (Polar region which experiences 6 months of darkness) were mentioned in chronicles in 1096. Here it was written about the unknown Ugra people (the Ostyaki (Khanty), the Voguly (Mansi), who have been met by Russian explorers. For the first time, the neighbors of the Ugra people - the Samodiats (the Nenetses) were mentioned in this story. The 12th and 13 th centuries are marked in the annals by frequent campaigns of the Novgorod people to the Ugra land for the “collection of taxes” - furs of the sables, ermines, polar foxes and squirrels. The demand for expensive furs in ancient Russia has always been very high.
Finally Siberia was joined to the Moscow State after the legendary campaign of Ermak Timofeyevich. After defeating Kuchum-khan and occupying Isker (the capital of the Siberian khanstvo in the autumn of 1582, Ermak sent a small group of Cossacks downward along the Irtysh in the end of the winter of 1583. The group under Bogdan Bryazga’s command (from another source of information - Cossack chieftain Nikita Pan) past the lands of the Konda-Pelymsk Vogulys and approached the "walls" of the town Samarovo. The Ostyakis, overtaken by a sudden attack of the Cossaks and were made to retreat. Samar, the Prince of the Belogorodskoye principality, was also killed.
Later, after the death of Ermak, in the autumn of 1585, the Cossaks under the command of the voevode (governor of the province) Ivan Mansurov formed the first Russian fortified settlement - Ob tower, which was based at the mouth of the Irtysh on the right bank of the Ob river. Thus, the Mansi and Khanty lands became a part of the Russian State and were further strengthened by the foundation of the towns Pelym, Berezovo in 1592, and Surgut - in 1594.
The region has historically been well known as a place for state criminals in exile. In the Berezov district, Prince Dmitry Romodanovskiy was in exile, in 1742 - Count Andrey Osterman and in 1798 - the Dolgorukov’s Princes. Prince Menshikov and his daughter Mariya were exiled and buried here. After the events on Senate square, the Decembrists were also exiled here.
Administration, management and performance of judicial functions were carried out by the peoples of the north on the basis of the Speranskiy Charter "About Management of Strangers in Siberia", adopted in 1822.
In 1918 Tobolsk province was renamed Tyumen province, and the centre was transferred to Tyumen. In 1923 the provinces, Uyezds and Volosts were abolished. The Ural Region, Tobolsk District and such districts as Berezovskiy, Surgutskiy, Samarovskiy and Kondinskiy were formed.
On December 10, 1930, the Presidium of RCEC (Russian Central Executive Committee) adopted the decree "About Foundation of National Associations in the Areas of Residence of Small in Number Native Peoples of the North". The creation of 8 national districts, including Ostyako-Vogulsk (Khanty-Mansiysk) district was stipulated in the decree.
In connection with the abolition of the Tobolsk District, the structure and borders of the Khanty-Mansiysk and Yamalo-Nenetsk National Districts were specified. In the structure of the Khanty-Mansiysk District such districts as Berezovskiy (centre - Berezovo), Micoyanovskiy (centre - Kondinsk), Kondinskii (centre - Nakhrachy), Samarovskii (centre - Samarovo), Surgut (centre - Surgut), Laryakskii (centre Laryak) were formed.
In 1977 the Khanty-Mansiysk National District received the status of the Autonomous Region.
In 1993 the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Region received the status as an equal member of the Russian Federation in accordance with Article 65 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation.