Cherepanov: Ural craftsmen
The Cherepanov family lived in Vyisky village, located near the factory pond. Most of the villagers worked as factory peasants - unskilled workers, woodcutters, and carriers. The head of the family, Peter Cherepanov, was a charcoal burner. His monthly income, even taking into account the extra earnings from the sale of coal and the breaking of coal heaps, did not exceed two rubles. It was impossible to live with my family on such earnings. The company's management also understood this and allowed assigned factory peasants to work for them only seven months a year. The rest of the time was given to work in their own farms - in the gardens, on haymaking, on arable land.
Alexey Cherepanov - the father of the future inventor - was born in 1750 year. From an early age he helped his father, and, having matured, began to carry out construction and earthworks at the factory. Alexey was twenty years old when he was attracted to Maria, a seventeen-year-old peasant daughter. A young worker wooed her, after receiving a parental blessing, the priest married them, and in 1774, the first child was born to the young, the boy Yefim.
Vyisky clerks eagerly took on the work of seven-year-old children, and Alexey Cherepanov was well aware of the future life of his son. At first, Yefim was supposed to collect cooled pieces of dross and slag in workshops, then he could get into the transportation of ore or copper pigs, and later, with diligence, he was to be transferred to the number of permanent shop workers. Cherepanov Sr. could not even dream of a boy getting into a master. For a long time, each master, valuing the benefits associated with his position, only introduced sons and nephews to the craft. The art of blacksmithing, metalworking, and domain craftsmen was handed down from generation to generation within the same family, and many high-school “craftsmen” praised their lineage from the legendary Tula gunsmiths.
But Efim Cherepanov from an early age attracted to inventing. For days on end, he could cut intricate toy constructions from the boards or repair complex locks. Often he disappeared from neighbors involved in carpentry or plumbing. The craftsmen of the little boy did not chase away - Efim was not at all an idle guest, he helped to sharpen tools, planed boards, worked at hand furs. As soon as Yefim grew older, Alexey Petrovich began to take him with him to perform factory habitation. Together with other working people, the guy obediently worked, but all his attention was riveted on what was happening in the factory workshops. He closely followed the clever and well-coordinated activities of the artisans at the huge hammers and horns, as well as obedient to the will of man, huge factory mechanisms acted. By that time, Yefim already knew very well how many Tagil and Wyi craftsmen were poisoned by suffocating fumes, blind from the bright flame, crippled at the “fiery work”, and yet he was attracted to this business, he admired the art of “craftsmen” to create a leaf or a strip of superior iron.
The next ten years were for Efim a time of stubborn "self-guided training." At home, he improved his knowledge in carpentry and metalworking skills, he himself mastered the diploma. Subsequently, the inventor to the question: "What is the title, where did you study?" - he always answered: "From working staff, he was trained at home." My father managed to arrange a capable young man in a workshop engaged in the manufacture of blower furs and had a peculiar name: "Fur Factory". Efim worked for glory, the bellows he mastered for the domain, copper smelters and hot hearths were always of the best quality. At the same time Yefim was restrained, modest and honest. I never licked at my bosses and never cursed favor with anyone, rarely took part in the amusements of factory youth, distributing rare leisure hours between self-education, homework and hunting. This is how his contemporaries described it: “To the growth of an average, his face is rather springy, his beard and hair on his head are red, his eyes are gray ...”.
When Yefim Cherepanov was twenty-one years old, his long-time dream came true - he became a master in the production of blowing furs. By that time, Alexey Petrovich’s family already numbered eleven people. The father’s favorite was the youngest son, eight-year-old Alyosha, who was alive and an extraordinarily sharp little boy, completely different in character from the serious and reserved Yefim.
At the same time, changes occurred in the fate of the Demidov plants. Terrible Nikita Akinfievich died, and his place was taken by his son Nikolai. One day the breeder received a petition from a noble landowner Darya Saltykova to assist in the construction of a new ironworks on the Karelian Isthmus. Young Nikolai gave her consent, and Tagil clerks from different factories selected experienced and skilled craftsmen for Countess Saltykova. Among others, the “fur master” of the Vyisky 24 plant, one-year-old Yefim Cherepanov, went to St. Petersburg.
On the Karelian Isthmus, Efim Alekseevich happened to participate in the founding of a new plant. He had to live in a damp, hastily made barrack. They fed very badly, but it was especially hard during the winter season. The dam masters were the first to start their work, Efim closely followed the construction of the factory dam. After the formation of the factory pond, the laying of the foundation and construction of blast furnaces, it was Cherepanov’s turn. All work took more than three years. In 1801, his “business trip” expired, and the Demidov master returned home.
After the trip, Cherepanov’s position at the Vysyk plant was consolidated. Over the years he spent outside his home, his outlook broadened, he acquired many additional skills and knowledge in various areas of factory production. Despite this, he still held the most modest posts for quite a long time, which was due to his kind - extremely closed, silent, with a great sense of independence and dignity. Only in 1806, Efim Alekseevich was assigned to the dam pupils, and a year later he became the dam of the Vysky plant. By the way, at that time, the dam's area of responsibility included not only the construction and use of dams and water wheels, but also the construction of a wide variety of factory mechanisms.
By that time, the 33-year-old master had been married to a young peasant Eudoxia for several years. In 1803, they had their first son, named Myron. He lived Efim still with his parents and younger brother Alexei in a common house. The life of the young Alexey Cherepanov was curious and bright. He was brisk and funny, unlike Efim, did not differ in diligence, didn’t like to sit at books and understood arithmetic poorly, but he easily mastered drawing and drawing, and performed all assigned tasks quickly and efficiently, with the summer knowing what was required of him . The orders of the Vyisky plant repeatedly reported to the managing director Mikhail Danilov about the striking promptness and sharpness of the dam's younger brother, about his ability to make intelligent drawings and sketches of equipment from nature. In the spring of 1813, Danilov went to Petersburg and took Alexey Alekseevich with him.
Upon arrival in the northern capital, the manager introduced the young guy to Demidov himself. Alexey made the breeder the most favorable impression. One of his first assignments was a 1813 trip to Kronstadt in June to familiarize himself with the equipment of the local iron foundry. Then, until March 1814, Alexey Alekseevich was in Arkhangelsk, where he checked the accounting documents of the Demidovs trade office, whose head was accused of embezzlement. From Arkhangelsk, the Ural master went straight to Moscow to personally report Demidov on the results of his investigation. During conversations with the factory owner, he, the first of the Cherepanovs, raised questions about the use of steam power in Ural enterprises. Unfortunately, Nikolai Demidov reacted unfavorably to this idea, saying that the issue of building steam engines at Nizhny Tagil factories requires a comprehensive analysis and is premature.
Some time after the return of Alexei Cherepanov to Nizhny Tagil, his five-year-old son died. However, the master did not lose heart, finding solace in the work. For outstanding services a native of the “workers' state” was introduced to the “jury staff”, he, like his elder brother, was appointed dam. Alexey built himself a spacious house, where, as a sympathetic and kind person, he resettled his parents, aunt and familiar homeless widow. And in 1816, his son Ammos was born.
It is known that the most cherished dream of Alexei Alekseevich was to get free and become free. A freelance worker could no longer arbitrarily bailiffs (or “ruling gentlemen,” as Yefim Cherepanov had sarcastically called them) be whipped, chained, exiled to a mine. The tax for redemption was 5,000 rubles from the Demidovs and was not available to most craftsmen and workers. Alexey Cherepanov, on the other hand, offered all six, but the breeder, believing that the master, being in a fortress condition, would bring him even greater income, refused him. But exactly one year later, in 1817, 31-year-old Alexey Alekseevich died suddenly. Presumably the cause of death was pneumonia. The short life of the Ural master was not in vain. Although Alexey Cherepanov was not the creator of the new mechanisms, his trips around Russia contributed to the exchange of experience between the inventors and craftsmen of Nizhny Tagil and other industrial areas.
At the end of the nineteenth century, 10, Efim Cherepanov decided to organize a special workshop at Vyisky Plant for repairing and manufacturing various mechanisms for all Tagil factories. Carefully, he picked up the best metalworking machines, and he took experienced and diligent craftsmen as assistants - carpenters, blacksmiths, carpenters, and metalworkers. His son Miron became the chief assistant of the dam's booster in the machine shop.
Miron Cherepanov was a stocky and short red-haired young man of a stubborn and stern disposition, from childhood he showed the same curiosity about the technique as his father. His performance and sharpness was astounding. Without attending a modest factory school, studying only under the guidance of his father in drawing, arithmetic and literacy, Myron mastered these sciences so that at the age of twelve he was determined to be a clerk at Vyisky plant with a salary of five rubles a month. By the way, his father received at that time eight rubles. Yefim adored his son and was proud of his success. Miron honored his parents, not only because of the traditions that prevailed in the circle of the Ural craftsmen, but also as a teacher and mentor.
At the end of the nineteenth century, 10 and early nineteenth century, Efim and Miron jointly performed various works on the construction of dams, sawmills, mills, water wheels, horse-drawn drainage machines, pumping plants, and also made various improvements to copper smelting, melting, blast furnace and other industries. Curiously, but never the Cherepanovs, unlike Kulibin and many other famous mechanics, were not interested in the problems of creating a “perpetual motion machine”. Initially, all work at the Vyisky Cherepanovs' factory was carried out manually or with the help of a water engine. However, in 20, Efim Alekseevich built his first, small-sized steam engine, which set the machines in the machine shop in motion. About the achievements of the dam learned and living abroad Demidov. Recalling his conversations with Alexei Cherepanov, who was admiringly telling about his older brother, the breeder gave Efim an important assignment. Cherepanov, as an expert in metalworking and metallurgy, a clever, observant and incorruptible man, despite the lack of engineering education and ignorance of the language, was instructed to go to England and find out why the sale of Demidov iron fell sharply there.
In July, 1821, Yefim arrived in the English city of Hull. Exhausted by suffering from sea-sickness, he, nevertheless, started the inspection of the enterprises the very next day. At a local foundry, a Siberian mechanic observed the work of puddling furnaces and cupola furnaces, as well as cast-iron cylindrical blowers set in motion by a steam engine. After that, he went to Leeds, where he visited porcelain and textile enterprises, as well as coal mines. Here, Efim Alekseevich for the first time saw a rail road and a steam locomotive pulling several trolleys filled with coal behind him. Of course, he was not allowed to make any detailed technical drawings, but he described everything that seemed especially important to Cherepanov in his notebook. About the “movable steam engine”, which seemed to him unsuccessful in construction, he noted: “... It carries coal 4 000 pounds at one time, four miles away; goes for coal three times a day ... These machines for copper and iron plants are not needed. " In August, Cherepanov visited steel mills in Bratford, then visited Halifax and Manchester at local textile mills, and then went to Sheffield - famous for the production of various metal products. After visiting the factories of London and Birmingham, Efim Alekseevich returned to Hull at the end of September and soon sailed to his homeland.
October 16 1821 Cherepanov arrived in St. Petersburg, where he immediately sat down to write a memorandum on the results of his trip to England. In it, he made absolutely correct conclusions: for Urals iron to be bought, it must compete with foreign samples (especially with Swedish iron) at cost and quality, which, in turn, required reorganization of production in the Urals.
After Efim Alekseevich returned to the plant, Demidov gave the order to include a talented mechanic among the salesmen of the Main Plant Office and appoint him "for the Nizhny Tagil enterprises as the chief mechanic." Very reluctantly, members of the Main Office in May 1822 of the year made a “determination” about the inclusion of the master in their lineup. The eighteen-year-old Miron became his regular assistant.
Schedule Cherepanova much changed. Early in the morning he went to the factories and was engaged in the “review of the machines”, making his advice on improving production. Only at the end of the working day did he appear in the building of the Main Office, where he studied and signed papers “related to the mechanical part” and took part in solving problems in other “parts”. And already late in the evening at home the mechanic with his son was engaged in developing and calculating new mechanisms. Cherepanov also managed to manage the work on the construction of new cars in his machine shop.
After some time, the master raised the issue of building a new steam engine, more powerful than its first 1820 model car of the year. Demidov, although he did not believe in the possibility of successful implementation of the plan, eventually gave permission to Yefim Alekseevich to make a four-horsepower steam engine. Throughout the winter, mechanics, carpenters, blacksmiths and unskilled workers, under the guidance of the Cherepanovs, built an aggregate at the Vyisky "factory". 28 March 1824 Cherepanov said in a report: “The steam engine is over. 2 of this March was reset (subjected to a test launch) and acted very easily. ” The managers also confirmed that “the machine is operating successfully” and, being used as a steam mill, “can grind about 90 pounds of rye every day”. It cost a little over a thousand rubles, while the famous Russian breeder, Charles Bird, built steam engines at the rate of one thousand rubles per horsepower.
12 February 1825, Efim Alekseevich, as part of a group of craftsmen, from the Ural plants was sent by Demidov to Sweden with the purpose of visiting local mining and metallurgical enterprises and, in particular, to study water-acting devices. Together with him, Efim Alekseevich wanted to take his son, who by that time had already become a dam at the Vyisky plant, but in fact he helped his father in any significant endeavor. Realizing that factory clerks would not let Miron go to Sweden, the chief mechanic turned directly to Demidov. The master, referring to his poor health, said that he must prepare a worthy successor for himself. Demidov agreed, and in early June 1825 Miron and Efim Cherepanov went to Stockholm. They visited metropolitan enterprises, inspected steel mills in Dannemorsky district and in Falun. According to Cherepanovs, the Swedish industry in terms of technical level was not at all “perfected,” as it seemed to Demidov, and in many respects was inferior to the Urals enterprises.
In October, a fire broke out at 1825 at the Copper Mine of the Vysky Plant, and one of the horse-drawn drainage machines burned. In connection with the emerging problem of pumping out water, without waiting for the official consent of Nikolai Demidov, the Cherepanovs began to develop drawings of the steam engine, which were completed by the spring of 1826. In parallel, the masters were preparing equipment for the manufacture of its parts. The final permission for the construction of the machine for the Anatolyevsky Mine of the Copper Mine came from the factory owner in February 1826, and in December 1827 passed its successful tests. Ural self-taught people once again proved that they are capable of coping with the construction of the most complicated mechanisms no worse than foreign engineers. The rated power of the Anatolievsky steam engine was 30 horsepower, but all 36 tests showed. In February, 1828 connected it to an underground pumping station, and the machine went into operation. Cherepanov wrote: “My works and my son were crowned with perfect success! In action, she went, as you can not wish for better. ... This two-pipe machine pumps 60 buckets of water in one minute. ” In 1829, during the expedition to the Asian part of Russia, the outstanding German naturalist Alexander Humboldt familiarized herself with the Cherepanovs steam engine, which she made a great impression on.
It is curious that simultaneously with the construction of the steam engine, Efim Alekseevich continued to do a lot of other things. He developed new models of rolling mills, was engaged in the development of copper smelting, supervised the rebuilding of the dam at the Dependency-Shaytan factory, supervised the construction of premises for serf-transferors, came up with a unique design of the gold washing machine on a horse engine (later successfully applied). At that time, Efim Alekseevich was still a little over fifty, but the health of the master at such a load quickly deteriorated, he rapidly lost his sight.
Before information about the launch of the Anatolevsky machine reached Nikolai Demidov, the owner of Nizhny Tagil factories died from progressive paralysis. The greatest wealth, which even the Western European monarchs could envy, went to his sons, Pavel and Anatoly. Pavel Demidov reacted condescendingly to Cherepanov, possibly because his late parent had personal correspondence with Yefim Alekseevich. He gave the inventor a cash prize for the Anatolevsky machine and allowed them to build a second such unit for the Copper mine.
During the development of the fourth steam engine, Ammos, the son of the late Alexei Alekseevich, who grew up and finished school, joined Efim and Miron Cherepanov. By character, he resembled his father, grew up as a lively and sociable young man, made great strides in drawing and drawing. Under the guidance of senior Cherepanovs, Ammos was quickly refined in various fields of factory skill.
The steam engine for the Vladimir mine of the Copper Mine was completed in December 1830. In the "full action" machine was started at the beginning of 1831 after the completion of the construction of the pumping unit in the mine. From the 85-meter depth every minute, she pumped out 90 buckets of water, replacing three horse-drawn epaulets with 224 horses. The power of the car was estimated at forty horsepower.
In 1833, Nikolay I signed the conclusion on awarding Cherepanov “for excellent abilities and works ...” with a silver medal on the Anninskaya ribbon. It is interesting that initially the mechanics planned to bestow a gold medal, but the Committee of Ministers, in view of the fact that Efim Alekseevich was a “commoner” and, moreover, a serf, rejected this decision. Nevertheless, taking advantage of the opportunity, the friends of the Tagil mechanic convinced the factory management to bring up the issue of providing Cherepanov free. After thinking about it, Pavel Demidov decided to release only Yefim Cherepanov and his wife from serfdom. All other members of the family of inventors still remained in bondage.
In the same year, 1933, Miron Cherepanov visited St. Petersburg to study rolling mills, and then was sent to England. There he became acquainted with the production of strip iron, the manufacture of “stewed” and cast steel, with the blast-furnace production and new metalworking machines. In England, Myron Cherepanov had the opportunity to observe in action passenger and freight locomotives. Of course, the observant and thoughtful mechanics for several years with his father working on the creation of the so-called "steam carts", even familiarity with the appearance of the locomotive gave a lot. At the same time, Cherepanov did not manage to see their internal structure and, especially, to remove the blueprints - the owners of the railroads tried by all means to preserve the world monopoly on the construction of steam locomotives.
In October, 1833, Miron returned home, and soon, in the mechanical shop of the Cherepanovs, work began on the construction of the first Russian steam locomotive, which in those years was called the “steamboat stage train” or simply the “steamboat”. Inventors started building a steam-engine fully armed - they relied on their richest years of experience, and the Vysky "mechanical staff" by that time already comprised more than eighty highly skilled craftsmen and workers with nearly the best machines in the Urals. Miron worked on the development of a steam boiler, steam cylinders and other parts of the locomotive, Yefim helped him with valuable advice, and Ammos, on the instructions of his elders, plotted the details. Assembly work began at the end of January on 1934. Almost all the time Cherepanov spent in the shop. On the frame, on their instructions, a steam boiler was strengthened, and in the front part, small 180-millimeter steam cylinders. The power of each machine was all horsepower 15, but the difficulty of manufacturing lay in their design, different from those with which the Cherepanovs had dealt with before. In parallel with the locomotive, a wooden shed was built - the predecessor of the future depots and a section of the rail cast-iron road 854 meters in length. The width of the “cast iron” gauge proposed by Cherepanov was 1645 millimeters.
In March, began testing the ship steamer. At the very beginning of the inventors misfortune befell - steam locomotive boiler exploded. Only by luck, none of the participants was hurt. The construction of the new boiler took all of March and April of the year 1834. The number of fire tubes in it was brought to eighty, which made the boiler much more productive. Other improvements were also made, in particular, a special mechanism was developed, which allows the driver to reverse the locomotive.
In August, all work was completed, and in early September, 1834 was tested locomotive, which showed that he was able to drive trains weighing up to 3,3 tons at a speed of 13-16 kilometers per hour. Thus was born the first Russian steam land transport. It cost Demidov a half thousand rubles, which was very cheap. As a comparison, it is worth noting that foreign steam locomotives, however, more high-speed and powerful, purchased a year later for the Tsarskoye Selo road, cost approximately 50 thousand rubles each.
In the early spring of 1835, the Cherepanovs built and tested their second steamboat. She could already pull a compound weighing up to 16 tons. Also by the efforts of the inventors in 1836, an 3,5-kilometer-long rail road was built, which took about the same route along which the ore from the Copper Mine was supplied to the plant. However, despite the successful implementation of the project, the invention of the Cherepanovs did not become widespread outside the plant, and subsequently due to the shortage of coal and their steam locomotives were replaced with horse gear. Nevertheless, the fact remains that Russia is the only European state where the first steam locomotives were made independently and not imported from England. True, the names of the heroes after their death were almost forever forgotten.
In June 1836 was granted freestyle for the construction of the “steamboat diligence” to Miron Cherepanov. However, Pavel Demidov took all measures not to lose the talented inventor - the mechanic’s family did not receive a vacation pay, and from Cherepanov himself a special obligation was made to remain in the old service. Ammos was appointed a mechanic at Nizhny Tagil factories in the year 1837. He could not, as before, to cooperate with Efim and Myron, but the creative connection between the three inventors has been preserved. In one of the documents of the late thirties, it was said that the Cherepanovs, "seeing a lack of navigation between the Lower and Perm," were eager to build a tugboat at the Vyisky plant. Miron Efimovich developed the drawings of the steam vessel, but the fate of this creation of the Ural masters is unknown.
It is worth noting that the Cherepanovs took an active part in the preparation of future specialists recruited from the children of serfs. In the premises of the machine shop, they organized the Higher Factory School, into which they transferred the children who had discovered the ability to technical engineering, after they finished the senior class of the Vyisky School. Miron Cherepanov himself taught mechanics at school, and Ammos - drawing.
In 1834, the Cherepanovs received permission to build a new steam engine designed for pumping water from the Dark (Pavlovsk) mine at the Copper Mine. It was not easy to fulfill this wish, since the inventors were busy with many smaller assignments. Only in May 1838 they managed to finish the construction. During tests conducted by 8 in July, it turned out that the steam engine can easily pump out water not only from the lower workings located at the 40-planted depth, but also from a greater depth. In terms of its performance, the Pavlovskaya machine could almost completely replace the two former ones - Vladimirskaya and Anatolyevskaya - combined.
At the end of the 30-x - the beginning of the 40-ies, the Cherepanovs were engaged in the construction of small 4- and 10-strong steam engines designed primarily for setting in motion the washing mechanisms of gold and platinum mines. In 1838, 64-year-old Efim Cherepanov, whose health was in extremely poor condition, resigned. However, the Petersburg office, according to the order of Demidov, only approved an increase in his salary to 1000 rubles a year, but he did not let the master go from work. Prikazchiki also did not reckon with the age and illness of the old mechanic, literally flooding him with deeds, forcing him to drive around the factories and “being angry” for any delay in execution. Efim Cherepanov 15 died on June 1842 of the year, remaining until the last day of his life as the chief mechanic of all the enterprises of the Demidovs in Nizhny Tagil.
In the spring of 1840, Pavel Demidov died, and his two-year-old son Pavel was appointed as his heir, on whose behalf his mother and guardians began to act. The main role among the guardians was played by Anatoly Demidov - Prince San Donato. This descendant of famous breeders who grew up abroad trusted only individuals who had nothing to do with his enterprises, and therefore was not inclined to render any connivance to his Tagil “subjects”. Anatoly Demidov created in Paris a governing board consisting of persons of French origin, mainly mining engineers, who developed guidelines and orders for the Ural factories. It is curious that the master's instructions were written in French, and only when they arrived at the place with half a sin were they translated into Russian.
The new leadership did not encourage Cherepanov’s aspirations to develop the construction of steam engines for their own needs in the Urals, preferring instead to buy them ready-made on the side. A worthy crown of this policy was the decision at the end of the 40s to liquidate the Vyisky machine shop. And this, in turn, dealt a severe blow to the own machine-building base of Nizhny Tagil factories, on the formation of which the Cherepanovs and their assistants worked for thirty years.
The decision to destroy the Vyisky "factory" seriously affected the health of Miron Efimovich. October 24 1849 Nizhniy Tagil plant management reported to St. Petersburg: “On the fifth day of this October, the mechanic Miron Cherepanov, who had served at the factories for about 34 years, died after an illness.” The exact circumstances of the death of 46 his inventor, who is in the prime of his powers and abilities, are still unknown. Vyyskaya "factory" in its former sense, experienced mechanics briefly. At the beginning of the 50s, all the equipment of the machine shop was sent to the Ural factories.
Ammos Cherepanov worked as a mechanic at the Nizhny Tagil plant before 1845, and then he was appointed clerk at the Lai plants. He was one of the largest specialists in mechanical engineering, and the management of Demidov factories regularly had to resort to his help. For example, in the summer of 1851, at the Copper Mine, Ammos Cherepanov and his pupil Prokopy Belkov supervised the installation of a low-pressure steam engine at 30 horsepower.
With the death of Ammos, technical creativity in the Cherepanov family was interrupted. The sons of Miron, Basil and Cipreus, as well as their descendants did not follow the path of their famous ancestors. And on the progeny of Ammos in general there is no data. However, the legacy of the Cherepanovs consisted in the training of experienced and qualified "craftsmen" of all specialties who continued the traditions of their work. At the end of the nineteenth century, among the Tagil workers, there was the familiar phrase “Made in Terapanovsky” - that is, particularly beautiful, skillful, and soundly.
According to the book VS Virginia "Cherepanov".
- Olga Zelenko-Zhdanova
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