The history of the park goes back to 1837, when Emperor Alexander II, while visitig Penza, noticed a piece of wasteland overgrown with shrubbery next to the main town cathedral. He suggested it might be turned into a park. Built very soon aftterward, the park quickly became a popular place for walks. A small fountain was built in 1842.
A monument to Mikhail Lermontov, created by the sculptor Ilya Gintsburg, stands in the centre, it is a place of annual celebrations dedicated to the famous Russian poet.