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E. Zablotski


Published: Zablotski, E., Mining Dynasties in Pre-Revolutionary Russia. In: Proceedings / 6th International Mining History Congress, Akabira, Japan, 2003, pp.337-340.

This paper deals with the conditions of appearance of mining dynasties and clans in Russia during the 18-19 centuries. It is dedicated to quantitative and substantive analysis of this phenomenon. The paper gives a general review of peculiarities of structural changes in the mining corporation and in its dynastic component during the 19 century. It analyzes the dynamics of service of the descendant mining engineers using a metademographic method for this purpose.

State mining works in Russia of the 18th – the beginning of the 19th century included mines, shafts and salt works, metallurgical and arms factories and mints. The working estate - which counted hundreds of thousands of people - had been forming since the beginning of the 18th century mainly from the serfs who were kept in the mining works for their whole life and worked there for generations. Before the Reform of 1861 (abolition of the serfdom in Russia) workers labor in the mining factories was in fact compulsory. Mining administration carried out the functions as management of the works of factories and subsidiary works, sustaining the order (police and court), organizing the education (including the primary mining one), health care (hospitals and hostels). Mining engineers – the managers of the works on different levels – occupied a special place in the mining community structure. The mining engineers corporation received its organizational form in 1830s [Loranski,1890].
For understanding the events of the mining history it is important to study the peculiarities of the formation of the mining professional community, to define the parameters of its structure and to characterize its personnel. In this context the prominent role of the mining dynasties in the composition of the community attracts special attention [Zablotski, 1999].
This research is dedicated to the dynasties of mining engineers. The first section includes quantitative parameters of the dynasties, discussion of factors and dynamics of their formation, features of their social origin and their contribution to the development of the mining industry. The second section includes the data about rank and «age» (i. e. service duration) structure of the corporation of mining engineers and its change during 1815 – 1895. I compare the careers of the representatives of mining dynasties with those of the other mining engineers. In the service dynamics analysis I use new approach that I propose to define as metademographic. In the third section I make a brief review of the mining clans formation that consist of the dynasties of mining engineers. The conclusions from the research indicate on a whole a broad and natural impact of the «dynasticity» on the mining corporation. The calculation of the metademographic parameter of «survivorship» reveals a comparatively high stability of service of the mining engineers’ descendants during the 19th century. This stability defined their high contributionto the development of the Russian mining.
This research is based on the data on the personnel of the mining that are found in the Russian State Historical Archive (RGIA) in Petersburg. I also used annual government publications as Address-Calendar (index of all who were on the service in the Russian Empire), Lists of Mining Engineers (published from 1835) and also the list of the Mining Institute Graduates [Lists...]. The archive files contain data about service and family disposition and are indispensable in the study of dynasties. The computer database compiled by the author includes the data about nearly 6,000 persons in the mining industry of the pre-revolutionary Russia.

Dynasties of Mining Engineers
Training of mining engineers began in Russia in 1773 in the Mining School (afterwards called the Mining Cadet Corps, Institute of the Mining Engineers Corps and finally the Mining Institute) in Petersburg. This higher mining education institution was the only one in Russia till the end of the 19th century. The amount of graduates who went to the mining service was small for a long time but it grew rapidly from 1870s because of the mining industry capitalization. The amount of mining engineers descendants among the graduates had been changing in broad intervals. In the middle of the 19th century it grew in 60-70% and more (see table 1).
The continuity of the profession in a mining family was encouraged by the conditions of receiving higher education. Till 1861 the sons of mining specialists had advantages in going to the Institute and were kept there on the state’s account but on the other hand they were obliged to be on the mining service not less than 10 years after graduation. The studies in the Mining Institute before 1861 included a preparatory educational course and began at the age of 12, so the decision about a child’s future profession was taken by his father or by the mining administration which send him to studies.
Other factors that played a certain role in motivation to acquire mining profession were limited possibilities of receiving another education as well as the advantages of the state mining service, an opportunity to improve one’s social status. The last consideration was of special importance for the children of workers and servants of the lower ranks. In the age of about 20 the graduates of the Mining Institute received a rank of the 13th –14th classes and after 1834 –of the 10th class. During their service they were advanced on the average a class for each 3-4 years. The 9th class rank gave a right for the personal nobility and the 10th class rank – for the hereditary one [1].
After the Reform of 1861 the conditions of entrance and learning in the Mining Institute profoundly changed: graduates of grammar schools and real training schools could be accepted and the learning period in the Institute lasted for 5 years. It changed the structure of the students as well as the motivation of studying and acquiring the profession. The amount of the descendants of mining engineers graduated from the Institute decreased, especially in 1865-1895. Alongside with eminent growth of the graduates’ total amount the share of the mining engineers’ descendants among them decreased rapidly (see the data above). The representatives of the old mining dynasties, mining engineers in third – fourth generations still prevailed in the graduations during the crisis years of the mining industry that followed the reform (1865-1875) but then the new dynasties of mining engineers became dominant.
According to my information there were at least 243 dynasties that included mining engineers. Total amount of mining engineers in the considered dynasties is 583 [2]. Amount of mining specialists per dynasty reaches 10-15 people. Data about the dynasties is shown in the table 2.
Data about the social origin of the mining dynasties is of a particular interest. From 243 dynasties considered here 92 had been found by mining engineers. Those are mainly dynasties of two generations. Other founders of dynasties who served in the mining department can be divided into five groups (with their amounin brackets): 1.) mining ranks, mainly higher than the 10th class coming out of noblemen, petty bourgeoisie, merchants, priests (57); 2.) ranks lower than the 10th class (33); 3.) non-class ranks of the working estate, clerks (30); 4.) foreign mining specialists (20); 5.) doctors (9) and priests (2) including foreigners. The role of foreign specialists in the development of mining in Russia was especially great during the 18th – the beginning of the 19th centuries [Zablotski, 2003].
Dynasties of 5 – 4 generations are known since the 18th century. Most of founders of those dynasties were local mining workmen and foreign specialists who had been invited to Russia. Here is a non-completed list of founders of mining dynasties (with the year in which they began their service in brackets). Swedish mining service man Deichman (about 1710), assessor of Berg-College Heinrich Schlatter (1719), mechanic worker in Ural, son of a pesant Larion Grammatchikov (1725), Austrian steiger Simon Kachka (1731), doctor in Nerchinsk mining-works Yegor Tomilov (about 1740), mining workers in Ural Ivan Anikin (1745) and Vasili Moskvin (1775), descendant of mining workers in Ural Ivan Brusnitsyn (1780), German specialists Gabriel Iotz or Iossa and Gottlib Grasshoff who served in Ural (1783), mining technician from Scotland Alexander Davy (1784), German inspector of the Mining School (1787) Fyodor Felkner (Christian Dietrich Volkner), Yegor Barbot-de-Marni, French mining specialist in Nerchinsk works (1788), Pavel Mevius (1791) Luteran pastor in Altai mining-works, and a son of a priest, mining engineer Michail Karpinski (1799) and others.
Many prominent mining figures of Russia were the descendants of those oldest dynasties: Deichman’s great-great grandson Oskar Alexandrovich D. (1818-1891) was the mining manager of the Nerchinsk works, Schlatter’s son Ivan Andreyevich S.(1708-1768) was the President of Berg-College and a prominent specialist in metallurgy of noble metals, Larion Grammatchikov’s four great grandsons served in Ural in high ranks (of 4th –6th classes). One of them - Vladimir Alexandrovich G. (1829 - about 1873) – was the general manager of the Ural mining-works. Kachka’s son Gavriil Simonovich K. (1740-1818) was the manager of the Altai mining-works and the first director of the Mining Department. Tomilov’s son Pavel Yegorovich T. (1741-1815) was the general manager of Ural mining-works. Brusnitsyn’s son Lev Ivanovich B. (1784-1857) came into history as a discoverer of the gold deposits in Ural. Iossa’s grandsons were senior administrators: Alexander Andreyevich I.(1810-1894) – the general manager of the Ural mining-works who had also the highest rank in the whole mining service (of the 2nd class), Grigori Andreyevich I. (1804-1874) – the director of the Mining Department in the Polish Kingdom and a professor of the metallurgy department of the Mining Cadet Corps. Iossa’s great grandson Nikolai Alexandrovich I. (1845-1916) – the director of the Mining Department and the metallurgy professor in the Mining Institute. Grasshoff’s grandson Grigori Ludvigovich G. (1831 - about 1885) was the director of the Mining Department. Davy’s grandson Pyotr Petrovich D. (1842-1896?) was the manager of the Caucasus Mining Administration. Felkner’s grandsons were senior administrators: Fyodor Ivanovich F.(1803-1877) – the general manager of the Ural factories, Nikolai Alexandrovich F.(1817-1878) – the manager of the Olonets works. Barbot-de-Marni’s grandson and great grandson, Nikolai Pavlovich B.(1831-1877) and Evgeni Nikolayevich B. (1868-1939) – professors in Mining Institut, Karpinski’s grandson Alexander Petrovich K.(1847-1936) – the manager of the Geological Committee, the president of the Academy of Sciences.
Many famous mining figures belong to dynasties of 3-2 generations: Anosovs, Armstrongs, brothers Butenevs, F.F. Beger, I. F. German, P. F. Ilman, N. A. Kulibin, V. I. Meller, Nesterovskis, P. M. Obuhov, Taskins, brothers Timme, N. P. Follendorf, Fullons and others [The Russian...; Zablotski, in press]. Obviously the majority of these prominent figures had high ranks, mostly of the general level. In order to understand the specifics of the activity of mining engineers’ descendants I shall turn now to the analysis of the dynamics of their service.

Dynamics of Mining Engineers’ Descendants Service
Examination of data about mining engineers service lets us to form a perception of rank and «age» structure of this corporation and of its changes in time as well as to appreciate the specifics of the dynastic component of the corporation. Analysis here was carried out for six cross-sections in time: years 1815, 1835, 1850, 1865, 1880, 1895 (table 3).
High share of mining engineers descendants in ranks of the highest classes (3rd,4th and 5th ), it is higher than their share in corporation as a whole. «Accumulation» of mining engineers descendants in generality ranks (3rd and 4th classes) is especially notable in the post-Reform years (1880 and 1895). This phenomenon can be connected either with the influence of the dynasties flourishing in previous decades or with peculiarities of granting the ranks of 3rd,4th and 5th classes.
Share of mining engineers descendants in generality ranks remained high also in subsequent years: 26% in 1910 and 18% in 1915. During all the examined period amount of mining engineers of the generality level was 211 (6% of mining engineers total amount). 87 of them belonged to mining dynasties (15% of mining engineers total amount, 41% of engineers’ generality). In the data of table 3 general trend towards «rejuvenation» during the 19th century - i. e. decrease in the service duration before acquiring appropriate rank - can be explored [3]. One can observe also a painful «inflationary» trend towards rapid growth of the highest ranks share characteristic for Russia as a whole.
In order to appreciate the dynamics of service the author implemented an approach that can be defined as «metademographic». A group with the same graduation year is perceived as a cohort (generation) that represents a certain «age» group in each year of service. A ratio of the cohort population in each year of service to its population in the time of graduation expressed as percentage corresponds to the cohort «survivorship». Another characteristic parameter is «life duration» calculated for each year as sum of service duration of all mining engineers divided by their number in the year of graduation (i. e. the year of the beginning of the service). For corporation as a whole as well as for groups of cohorts an average «age» – i. e. an average service duration of a mining engineer – can be calculated.
Metademographic parameters can be calculated both for series of cohorts of a certain «age»’ interval and for separate cohorts, both for corporation as a whole and separately for mining engineers’ descendants and for all mining engineers. The most significant parameter is «survivorship» (see table 4 and fig. 1).
Trends of the «survivorship» values for cohorts with various service duration show characteristic features of decrease in the population of mining engineers generations from the moment of the beginning of the service till the year examined (years 1865 and 1895 on fig. 1).
These features can be observed in detail when the time marks density is increased – i. e. the interval between time cross-sections is diminished. On the «survivorship» diagram one can clearly observe groups of cohorts on different stages of career, time of resign of the majority of specialists and role of veterans. Service duration and «survivorship» can be compared with class of a rank (see table 3). Even a schematic inquiry with the 15 years interval carried out by the author reveals characteristic differences of trends related to administrative reforms, changes in specialists training conditions and other features of the mining industry development.
The results (table 4, fig. 1) establish the main feature connected with the theme of this research, namely high values of «survivorship» of the dynastic component of cohort compared to the rest of it. This difference presents the evidence of relatively higher stability of service among the representatives of the mining dynasties, of their greater attachment to the profession. This difference is the most remarkable during the first ten years of service. The peak of the «dynasticity» in the middle of the 19th century can be well observed through the data for 1865. Calculations of the values of «life duration» provide similar results.

Mining Clans
In addition to the representatives of the examined mining dynasties a significant amount of specialists (more than 500 according to the author’s database) consisted of brothers and other relatives. Some of them are related also to those dynasties [4] . Conditions of life encouraged the creation of relative ties between mining families. 76 of 243 examined dynasties were related to each other. Related dynasties formed clans of two main types of pairs: son-in-law (husband of daughter) – father-in-law (father of wife) pair and brothers-in-law (husband of sister – brother of wife) pair. The first type was created when a daughter of the representative of one dynasty married the representative of the other. In this case the descendants had two – three «mining roots» (sons and grandsons). The second type was created when a sister of the representative of one dynasty married the representative of the other (the descendants were cousins and nephews). The number of families related to a certain dynasty could be significant (it reached 8-11). Dynasties represented by 3 – 5 generations that consisted of mining engineers to more than 60% had more relative ties. I revealed 43 such dynasties that created a «clan core» of the dynastic component of the corporation. Many of the mining figures mentioned earlier belong to them. For instance Iossas were related to the dynasties of Arsenyevs, Wagners, Devies, Deichmans, Dreiers, Zelentsovs, Ivanovs, Mellers. Mining engineers Kotlyarevski and Khiryakov were Iossa’s relatives too. Karpinskis were related to the dynasties of Brusnitsins, Grasshoffs, Mellers, Poretskis, Redikortsevs, Frezes. Mining engineers Tsygankov and Schatelen were Karpinskis’ relatives. Anosoves were related to the Aboltins, Grasshoffs, Nesterovskis, Puzanovs, Sabakins dynasties.

1. The research carried out in this paper presents broad evidence of «dynasticity» in the corporation of mining engineers especially before 1880s. This phenomenon was assisted by administrative measures of encouragement of family continuity of profession caused by shortage of specialists. Other influential factors were the specifics of life and work of mining specialists in Russia of the 18th – 19th centuries.
2. For mining engineers’ descendants a relatively high stability of career and an increased «survivorship» in the profession were revealed.
3. Mining dynasties and clans contributed to stability of the corporation and to development of mining economy. Numerous representatives of mining dynasties came into history of Russian mining as prominent administrators, inventors and scientists.
4. The proposed metademographic approach implemented by the author in inquiry of mining dynasties seems to be promising as a research method in studying structure and evolution of professional communities.

Lists: The List to Generals, Staff- and Ober-officers of the Mining-Engineeres’s Corps (1835-1865), St-Petersburg; The List to Mining-Engineeres (1868-1915), St-Petersburg; The List to Persons graduated from Mining Institut since 1773 to 1923 years. Mining Journal, 1923, ¹11, p. 747-763. (in Russian).
Loranski A.M. (1900). Short Historical Review of Mining Administrative Institution in Russia 1700-1900 Years. St-Petersburg. (in Russian).
The Russian Biographical Dictionary (1896-1913). St-Petersburg.
Zablotski E. Foreign Specialists in Russian Mining and Metallurgy in 18-19 centuries. - In: Proceedings of 6th International Symposium on Cultural Heritage in Geosciences, Mining and Metallurgy, Idrija, 2003, p.173-179.
Zablotski E. (in press). Figures of Mining Service of prerevolutionary Russia. The Short Biographical Dictionary.
Zablotski E. Peculiarities of the Mining Estate''s Forming of the Russian Empire. - In: Empires of the Modern Time: Tipology and Evolution (XV-XX cc.). St-Petersburg, 1999, p.239-248. (in Russian).

1. On the Russian service there was a special system of ranks. There were lower, ober-officer ranks (14th1 to 9th classes), higher, staff-officer ranks (8th to 5th classes) and general ranks (4th to 2nd classes). The ranks’ names were both mining – from schichtmeister to ober-berghauptman (till the middle of the 19th century) – and civil or even military (in 1834-1866). The working estate consisted of workers, shop apprentices, clerks as well as of the lower non-class ranks as unter-schichtmeisters of the three classes and cancelarists.
2. Total amount of mining engineers graduated from the Institute in 1776 – 1918 counts about 3,200.
3. Actually this trend was partly corrected by the older age of graduation from the Institute. According to the non-complete data it was the age of 20 in 1790-1834, 21 - in 1835-1864, 24 - in 1865-1879, 25 - in 1880-1894.
4. I revealed also more than 170 mining dynasties mainly of the representatives of the working estate and the lower ranks that do not include mining engineers. Their number may be significantly increased. The number of the dynasties of the mining engineers may also be increased as a result of the more thorough inquiry.

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