The first smelting, on 21 December, 1949, was symbolic: copper was so scarce that there was nothing to pour. And yet, at a gala meeting in honor of the 70th anniversary of Stalin, Kibalin, having reported on the first stage launch, handed over to the Presidium an ingot of Norilsk blister copper to send it to Moscow.
Two decades later, before Kibalin left, the Soviet Prime Minister Alexei Kosygin, during a visit to Norilsk, had named the copper plant the best enterprise in Soviet metallurgy. The twentieth anniversary of the plant was the last for Konstantin Kibalin in his Norilsk biography.
At the celebration, according to the tradition of those years, the pioneers welcomed the jubilees, the creative teams of the plant performed. Together with the plant, the famous triple of the plant – Olga Naypak, Nina Isaeva and Albina Koroleva – celebrated its fifth anniversary.
Konstantin Kibalin was seen off by a small circle of people, just two directors, Vladimir Dolgih and Nikolay Mashyanov. In 1970, Dolgih headed the Krasnoyarsk region, and former chief metallurgist, former head of the design office, and former NMMC chief engineer Mashyanov was the Norilsk Mining and Metallurgical Combine director.
Text: Varvara Sosnovskaya, Photo: Nornickel Polar Branch and Svetlana Gunina's archive