31 January 1932 at the Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Combine by the heroic efforts of many thousands of workers: the workers and engineers put into operation the first blast furnace. The launch of advanced metallurgical production in the Urals became a real technological and strategic breakthrough of the young Soviet country.
Magnetic dreamed long ago and used mercilessly
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So, the first blast furnace was launched on 31 on January 1932, but the official birthday of the Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works is considered to be 1 on February 1932 of the year - on this day the blast furnace produced the first metal. The Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Combine first bore the name of Lenin, who took part in its creation by thought, then Stalin, who took part in the work. During the perestroika, it became just the Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Combine, but remained the flagship of the Russian metallurgy, which is not too easy to get work on.
But back to the first blast. It is well known that metallurgy in Russia was created not so much by prudent capitalists as by adventurers and romantics. And, oddly enough, it worked. So it happened and plans to build a metallurgical plant in the southern Urals near the mountain Magnetic, almost - in the open field, because there was no forest, which drowned low-power blast furnaces before the revolution, no other types of fuel. Even if to mine ore, how then to process?
Magnitka. Start of construction Magnitka. Start of construction
However, the reserves of Magnitnaya Mountain - half a billion tons of iron ore, partially coming to the surface - did not give rest to the industrialists before the revolution. The ores were very rich. The best samples contained up to 70% iron. And, of course, those who understood what results would bring it, dreamed that they would be given the right to develop the field at Magnitnaya.
It is worth noting that Mount Magnitnaya is not a monolith, but a group of low “old” mountains, covering an area of about 25 square kilometers. These are the mountains - Attach, Dalnyaya, Uzyanka, Ezhovka, Berezovaya, which are located on the left bank of the Ural River.
In 1743, the Orenburg Governor Neplyuev founded the fort of "Uisk line". According to some reports, it was intended to protect Magnitnaya from illegal mining of ore. Near the fortress, the Magnitnaya village appeared soon. 6 May 1774, she tried to capture her Emelyan Pugachev. The battle with the royal troops came out strange. During the day, the fortress desperately resisted, and at night the troops went over to the side of the “Tsar Liberator”. And the village became a stronghold and base of the Pugachev army ...
It cannot be said that they did not attempt to develop ore on Magnitnaya before the Soviet era. The first permission for mining and construction of factories in this place - on the rivers Avzyan and Tirlyanka - was obtained by industrialists Ivan Borisovich Tverdyshev and his son-in-law Ivan Stepanovich Myasnikov. It happened this October 27 1752. They built in the southern Urals 15 plants (one of the first - Beletsky), which mainly worked for the fortress. Together with civilian workers, their number was 6 thousand people.
Cheap labor cost of serfs became the basis of profit at these plants. According to some information, pounds of ore harvested and folded at the foot of the mountain cost the breeders 0,06 pennies, and together with the delivery to the plant, 2,36 − 2,56 pennies cost them. Ore was mined in the most primitive way - with a pick and a shovel. Working conditions were such that people died before they reached 30 years, but the profit grew anyway, as did the country's need for iron. However, in 1877, the enterprises became unprofitable and went back to the joint-stock company for debts, and, in fact, the German-Belgian company Vogau and Co., which substantially upgraded all technological processes and purchased new equipment. But the prey was still conducted by great-grandfather methods - spontaneously, primitively and predatory.
Is building a new plant? Revolutionary decision
Meanwhile, the rich Magnitogorsk constantly attracted the attention of scientists. They explored it in the XVIII and XIX centuries. And at the beginning of the twentieth century, when a government commission headed by Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleev was sent there. Only then did they begin to lay the correct ore mines, stopping the spontaneous mining of ore by the population.
The arrival of workers at the construction Magniitki. 1929 Arrival of workers for the construction of Magniitki. Xnumx
Another commission, led by Vladimir Ivanovich Bauman (a professor at the St. Petersburg Mining Institute and the creator of modern mine surveying) and Ivan Mikhailovich Bakhurin (developed a theory of interpretation of magnetic reconnaissance data and magnetic microscopic techniques for surveying purposes) was sent to Magnetic in 1917 — 1918 years and appreciated its potential. Before the revolution, ore, mined from Magnitnaya mountain in small quantities, was taken for processing at the Beloretsk plant. Recall that it was impossible to process it with the same methods - using charcoal - due to the lack of forests.
Meanwhile, in the steel industry of Ukraine, coke has long been used. And this method was approved by the same Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev, who believed that building large blast furnaces in the Urals and in Siberia is simply necessary. But there were no coal deposits near Magnitnaya. The nearest was in the Kuznetsk coal basin, that is, in the Kuzbass. Carry coal from there, and in return - to get the metal? This is insanely expensive and unprofitable! This "pendulum" was considered an economic utopia. It is much cheaper to develop metallurgy in Ukraine - in the Donbass and Krivoy Rog!
In the article “Stalin's industrialization” Mikhail Kiryukhin writes: “A talented mining engineer P.I. Palchinsky spoke out against the“ Magnitka ”project ... In his opinion, the choice of location for the construction of a metallurgical plant should be based on many factors, of which proximity to the field resolutely can not be the main. Palchinsky cited as an example the experience of the United States, where steel mills are located in places with sufficient labor resources and where it is relatively cheap - along the river (Detroit, Cleveland and the “Magnitka” prototype itself - a factory in Gary, Indiana) or along an existing railroad - to deliver the necessary resources (and Pittsburgh so generally stands on a huge coal deposit, but not iron). He urged the engineers involved in the design of such a large plant to choose between possible alternatives and take into account the cost of logistics; He demanded additional research of the fields, insisted that meeting the most basic needs of the workers (housing, food, quality of life) was not a question of the ethics of building communism, but a strictly necessary condition for a qualitative increase in production. Palchinsky called, argued, demanded, explained, insisted, justified - and was shot without trial. ” Palchinsky was one of the first in the list of victims of the construction of Magnitogorsk.
However, the idea of building MMK turned out to be an unexpectedly strong supporter - Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, who paid great attention to the rich Ural subsoil and highly appreciated the potential of Siberia and the Southern Urals in terms of mineral production. He also believed that the expensive transportation of coal to Magnitnaya will fully pay off the high content of iron ore in the rock and the low cost of its production. After all, she had and exits to the surface.
Of course, the necessary transport infrastructure, new railway, new technologies. But here it is possible to turn to foreign experience. The main thing is that after the victory of the October Revolution, the task could be solved on a national scale. In addition, it does not hurt to use the enthusiasm of the proletariat, and how cheap labor will cost.
A commission was created to develop a plan for the transfer of heavy industry beyond the Urals, and also to calculate the possibilities of a single economic complex linking the Kuzbass and the South Urals. And then this idea had many opponents who considered it ruinous for the country. However, the commission brought encouraging results.
“In November, 1926, the presidium of the Ural Regional Economic Council, approved the construction site of a new metallurgical plant - a site near Magnetic Mountain. 2 March 1929 was appointed Vitaly Hasselblat, who immediately went to the USA as a member of a group of Soviet specialists, Magnitrostroi wrote, referring to Expert magazine, in the article “The War That Could Not Be” information resource RNNS. - The trip plans included an order for both construction projects and the necessary for the American industrial equipment plant. The main result of the trip was the conclusion of 13 on May 1929 of an agreement between Vostokstal and Arthur McKee from Cleveland to design the Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Combine (a little later a contract was signed with the German company Demag for the rolling plant of this combine). ”
McKee engineers developed a master plan for the plant, and engineers from the Ural Institute Gipromez also worked side by side with them. According to the calculations of the Americans, the furnace was supposed to be started in the 1934 year.
The head of the construction of the coke-chemical plant, the production of which was so necessary for the successful operation of the blast furnace, was another “strong manager” Lazar M. Maryasin. His work was evaluated in different ways, there were complaints about the organization of construction and workers' life, and the violation of certain technological conditions. However, the country's leadership was initially satisfied with the results, and in 1933-36, he became the head of the Uralvagonzavod construction.
The construction of MMK involved 46 design organizations, 158 factories, 49 railways, 108 universities. It was Russian design engineers who did most of the technical documentation for MMK.
However, the process required a leader who would be able to unite all the efforts of the performers and direct them in the right direction. In 1931, he was a strong business executive, well versed in metallurgy and already experienced in managing profile factories, Yakov Semyonovich Gugel (born in 1895, shot in 1937), before that he had extensive experience in managing the metallurgical industry.
Magnitka. Construction Magnitogorsk. Building
He was a man of a decisive nature, so he immediately took up the removal of excess and restoring order at a construction site, which was conducted on an amateurish level - with the squandering of building materials, equipment and the chaotic distribution of labor among the objects. He planned the creation of separate workshops - blast furnace, open-hearth and rolling. Now both builders and designers clearly understood their tasks. The stove without reservoir was erected in 74 of the day.
30 June 1929, the construction of the railway line Kartaly - Magnitogorsk was completed, workers began to arrive at the construction site.
15 May 1931, the mine was commissioned.
1 July 1930, the ceremonial laying of the first blast furnace was made. The ceremony was attended by 14 thousands of workers.
October 9 blast furnace №1 put on drying.
31 January 1932 in 11: The 15 furnace was started (blown out), although American scientists believed that it was technologically impossible to do this in a thirty-degree frost.
1 February 1932 of the year in 21: The furnace 30 produced the first cast iron.
To maintain the feeling of “revolutionary pride”, the most advanced workers who built the furnace, a dozen iron tiles with the image of Lenin and the inscription “As a sign of your active participation in the construction of the first stage of the Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Plant, the plant management department gives you a memorial plaque cast from the first blast furnace No. 1 - 1 February 1932 g. ".
What "editorials" were silent about ...
In the distant 1932 year, Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was already in power in the USSR, insisting on the tight deadlines for starting the furnace. Neither the leadership of the CMI or Ordzhonikidze decided to disobey him, despite the fair protests of the Americans.
The furnace was started, reported, but the pipes that were underground, burst from the temperature difference. From one section of the furnace flew a piece of masonry. The hot gases escaping from the steelmaking process escaped from there. According to the testimony of historians of Magnitogorsk, people made fires to warm the earth, get to the pipes and patch them. In this case, no one got sick. Well, the situation itself was the reason for the termination of the contract with the company McKee. Very opportunely, since the currency of the Soviet leadership ended.
On October 1, 1936, by order No. 1425 of the People’s Commissariat of Heavy Industry, the construction of the MMK was transferred to a contractual way, for which the Magnitostroy construction and installation trust was organized under the authority of GUMP NKTP. Konstantin Dmitrievich Valerius was appointed as the manager. In the tradition of the trust included to pass objects turnkey.
The rush at the launch of blast furnace No. XXUMX ММН was clearly dictated by the strategic interests of the USSR. In Europe, it was very restless, and no one ruled out the likelihood of war. To place the steel industry complex beyond the Urals was from a military point of view a very important decision to strengthen the country's defense. A month after the start of the war, he gave the country armored steel. Plants of the metallurgical industry were evacuated beyond the Urals, which were able to continue their work on the basis of MMK. Steelworkers worked on defense day and night.
The first armor produced on the blooming. July 1941 First blooming armor plate. July 1941
Since 1937, the heroic история MMK turned the dark side to the plant construction managers. Let us start with Jacob Gugel, born in Belarus, who established Soviet power in Odessa, fought with the white army in Bessarabia, studied at intervals at the technological institute and became one of the prominent leaders in metallurgy. In March, 1935, Jacob Gugel was awarded the Order of Lenin for his services in the construction of two giants of the metallurgical industry of the first five years - Magnitka and Azovstal.
Historian Lev Yarutsky wrote about him: “He was first promoted to the post of independent production commander in Taganrog — in 26 years he became director of a boiler plant. Then there were command posts at the Yuzovsky and Konstantinovsky metallurgical plants ... Gugel immortalized his name by directing the construction of metallurgical giants of world importance. But besides Magnitka and Azovstal, he built another plant - Mariupol Novotrubny named after V.V. Kuybyshev. However, this construction, and the fact that he saved the former Providence from dismantling and achieved its reconstruction, and the fact that he raised the Ilyich plant to the height, is all a “trifle” compared to the Magnitogorsk and Azovstal epics. ”
However, 19 August 1937, the security officer of the 4 Division of the UGB NKVD of Donetsk region, Senior State Security Sergeant Trofimenko made a decision on the arrest of Gugel, which authorized the Prosecutor General. Soon, Gugel recognized himself as a member of a Trotskyist organization organized in Donbass, which was allegedly headed by Ordzhonikidze's favorite Georgy Gvakharia, who was appointed director of the Makeyevka metallurgical plant after he had torn it off completely with Trotsky.
According to Yarutsky, Gugel did not really approve of the actions of the Soviet authorities, especially the voluntarism of Soviet officials in organizing production. 14 October 1937, he was shot.
“When, according to Tatyana Ivanovna Gugel, widows of Yakov Semyonovich, who served eight years in camps and prisons as“ a member of the traitor’s family ”, the Assistant Military Prosecutor of the Kiev Military District for special units of the Stalin Region had a captain of justice with a big literary name - Fadeyev conscientiously rechecked the former case Director of Azovstal and obtained completely irrefutable evidence of his innocence, ”writes Yarutsky,“ but nevertheless came to the conclusion (and it was already after the 20th Congress) that Tatiana’s statement Ivanovna about the rehabilitation of her husband should be left unsatisfied, Gugel was shot a second time. And only when all the “accomplices” of Gugel — Gvakharia, Sarkisov, and others — received a complete rehabilitation (the posthumous, of course) got a completely ridiculous situation, they finally had mercy on Yakov Semenovich. ”
In the spring of 1936, the NKVD fabricated the case “On the activities of a Trotskyist sabotage organization at Uralvagonstroy, Uralvagonzavod,” during which about two thousand people were arrested, including the construction and plant managers. Among them is Lazar Maryasin (1937), the head of the Magnitostroy trust — engineer Konstantin Dmitrievich Valerius, a native of Zlatoust, headed the reconstruction of the Zlatoust metallurgical combine.
Sign "Builder of the giant. Magnetostroy. USSR, Leningrad, 1931 г Sign “To the Builder of the Giant. Magnetostroy. USSR, Leningrad, 1931 g
Blast furnace No. 1 was completely reconstructed at the end of 1990's. After reconstruction, its volume increased to 1 370 cubic meters, productivity reached 1,2 million tons per year. In December, the furnace 2009 underwent a major overhaul and at the end of December, 2009 again reached full capacity.