IZHEVSK WEAPONS FACTORY: FROM THE FLINTLOCK GUN TO KALASH
The opening ceremony of the new exhibition started with the sounds of an old march. Alexander Yermakov, the Deputy Director of the Kalashnikov Exhibition Complex of Small Arms, handed letters of gratitude to those who contributed to the making of the exhibition “Izhevsk Weapons Factory: from the flintlock gun to Kalash”. We seem to know a lot about the history of the city main factory. However, each new project tells us something new. The exhibition presents the history of the factory through stories of people who devoted their lives to Izhevsk Weapons Factory, working in its workshops. The descendants of Izhevsk gunsmiths willingly cooperated with the Kalashnikov Museum. Vasiliy Shestakov generously shared the materials of his family with the museum. Thus, in one of the showcases you can see a photo of Ivan Shestakov, who was a gunsmith and the son of a caftan-owner, an honorary gunsmith. Alexander Boltin handed over pictures of the family of the caftan-owner Ivan Boltin and his brothers-gunsmiths. Lada Mikhailova, the head of the Exposition Department, handed over letters of Tonya Sazonova, a student of Women’s High School in 1916-1917, as well as an album with pictures made by a factory worker Claudia Derishcheva in the 1920’s-30’s.
In the showcases of the new exhibition “Izhevsk Weapons Factory: from the flintlock gun to Kalash” you can see rare exhibits that can help you feel and see the epoch, for instance, a bullet from the Battle at the Borodino Field and badges of factory workers, an infantry flintlock gun, the original drawing of the thread gage. Special emphasis is placed on the collaboration with legendary arms designers Fyodor Tokarev and Sergey Simonov and, of course, Mikhail Kalashnikov’s first steps at Izhevsk Weapons Factory. The exhibition covers a period of 150 years: from the foundation of the factory in 1807 to the launch of the AK-47 mass-production in 1949.