#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. Talnah was a symbol of the new life of Norilsk: its ores were found precisely when the city and the combine were on the verge of mothballing. And such a plot, of course, was a godsend for authors.
Not just every year – almost every month of the newborn village life was recorded. Here is one of these snapshots – a fragment of Alexander Smekalin’s essay At the Cradle of Talnah, written in 1966.
“From a bird’s eye view, Talnah looks like a huge triangle, in one corner of which miners are in charge, in the other – builders, and in the third, the most picturesque, – geologists. Their drilling rigs are scattered throughout the valley, on the mountainside and even in the riverbed of Talnashka itself. Right in the open air there are stacks of core boxes, in the cells of which black, bluish, light yellow columns of rock, extracted by drillers from a thousand meters deep, are neatly placed. Everywhere you look, there are tents, tents… Employees of many scientific institutes of the country settled in them for the summer. Talnah requires that its problems be solved not only quickly, but also professionally and scientifically.
There is a canvas town of the Research Institute of Arctic Geology, where the discoverer of Norilsk ores, doctor of geological and mineralogical sciences, professor Nikolay Urvantsev, continues to work. And here, on the banks of the Talnashka river, MSU students and graduate students pitched their tents.
Two young boys in wide-brimmed mosquito hats are moving boxes of core. These are Norilsk residents Sasha Letov and Valera Limonov. The guys graduated from ninth grade and went to work on the expedition for the summer. Both decided to become geologists. And even though for now they have to “carry the flat and roll the round,” the guys are in the most cheerful mood. After all, they work at Talnah! And Talnah is the most suitable school for future pioneers.
Just six years ago only tundra was here, overgrown with moss and alder bushes in summer, and covered with snow like a shroud in winter.
The now famous Talnashka river is noisy. And above the delicate greenery of northern larches and birches there is the hum of a large construction project”.
In the History Spot photo project’s previous publication, we told that the first electric stoves appeared in Norilsk kitchens instead of wood-burning ones.
Text: Svetlana Ferapontova, Photo: Nornickel Polar Branch archive