Stromynsky tract: why one of the oldest roads in Russia is called the "Russian Silk Road"

We had one blood vein that saturated the Vladimir region with the entrepreneurship of new people, artisans and merchants. The ancient Stromyn tract connected Moscow, Yuryev-Polsky, Suzdal and Vladimir, and over time, villages began to be built along it, life flowed into the depths.

Floodplain Weavers

The fact is that almost nothing grows on our land. The rye fields quickly drain the meager strength from the earth and fall into disrepair, and the Russian cannot do his native sour bread without three pounds a day. There can be only one way out - to buy products, and to work for hire or to trade. So they were mainly engaged in pottery and weaving along this tract. Linen was sold by hand, going out onto the road and offering to passing carts.

With the advent of the industrial age, everything changed. Several merchants settled on the tract and started teaching the peasants how to weave very expensive fabrics: silk velvet, plush and semi-fur. The principle was similar to the usual one, but the tools and raw materials were slightly different. They talk about this in the village of Zarechye of the former Pokrovsky district of the Vladimir region. Solovyovs, Dumnovs - everyone here remembers them.

Merchants opened factories at their estates and hired local weavers to work, often the loom and raw materials were given to their homes. Over time, new temples grew, hospitals and schools for workers and their families appeared, even applicants came from neighboring cities.

Weavers produced about an arshin of fabric per day and received 25 rubles per month. This was enough for life with interest, since, for example, a cow at that time cost about 5 rubles.

The prize they received was cut fabrics, so any local woman could well afford the then fashionable plush sleeveless jacket - "crimp". The vacation lasted 3 summer months, during which it was possible to make some supplies for the winter and plant vegetables.

Craft is not worn

Weaver's day began at 4 am, it was not accepted to get up later. In the light of a smoked kerosene lamp, they were preparing to recharge the machine again 100 meters or continue yesterday's work. In each row, where there was a pile, it was necessary to wind silk on a special knitting needle and then cut the loops along a barely distinguishable groove with a sharp knife. For velvet, the needle was very thin, because its pile was low, for plush - more, and for half-fur - the thickest.

It is especially difficult to do this in the dark, the eyes instantly get tired, so the weavers came to rest until they were 40 years old, exhausted and poorly seeing. There was such a noise in the workshop that people woke up in neighboring houses, so soon there was a ban on nearby construction of work premises.

“I am a funny weaver, I can weave well! Pinch-ponch-rivet-rivet, I can weave well! " The great-granddaughter of the manufacturer Sergei Ivanovich Dumnov is playing with the children in the yard. Two shuttle boys are trying to run between the closing rows of other guys. And in those days they would have been weaving with might and main, because at the age of 12, almost every child was put on the machines to learn.

Even simple children's amusements are typical here - silk velvet fed everyone before the revolution. The proletariat did not need such materials, the estate was then dispossessed, but today not only the memory, but also the completely restored life of the local house-museum remains about the craft.

River of Silks and Chintz