Memorial estate of A.Mozhaisky
An exposition devoted to the pioneer of the Russian aircraft construction Alexander Mozhaisky (1825-1890) is located 12 km off Vologda in a mansion that once belonged to L.Kuzmina, Mozhaisky's spouse. There is a park beyond the house with lindens and oaks planted around the ponds. It was laid out in 1861. The memorial estate is a two-storeyed timbered building dating back to the 19th century.
Russian aviation pioneer Alexander Mozhaisky (1825-1890) was born into a sailor's family. Following in his father's footsteps, he made a highly successful naval career. In 1853-1854 he circumnavigated the world on board the frigate "Diana" reaching the Far East via the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Having spent much of his life serving in the Russian navy, Mozhaisky began studying the fundamentals of aeronautics. He started his efforts by studying birds, the structure of their wings, and the relationship between the area of their wings and their weight. Mozhaisky also studied kites as well as propellers during these early years. In order to further his work, Mozhaisky was able to receive some government funding from the Military Ministry for his research. Unfortunately, the government refused to finance the project in 1878, and Mozhaisky was forced to forge ahead on his own. He succeeded in designing an aircraft and received a patent on his invention in 1881.
However, it should be noted that the claims of success were not made until 1949 when the Soviet leader Joseph Stalin asserted that Mozhaisky was the true inventor of the airplane. Alexander Mozhaisky was forward-thinking aviation pioneer who understood many of the key design characteristics that were necessary to make a practical heavier-than-air flying vehicle.
The Memorial estate of A.Mozhaisky which is an affiliate to the Vologda State Museum-Preserve was founded on November 4, 1986. The place was chosen not by chance. In this house Alexander Mozhaisky carried out calculations and experiments aiming to create a heavier-than-air flying vehicle. The exposition tells about the contribution of the Vologda-born scientists, researchers and pilots into the development of Russian aviation. It presents the development of the Russian aeronautics from the invention of the first plane to the flight of the historic Voskhod-2 mission in 1965 with Pavel Belyaev, a Vologda-born cosmonaut, on board. A special section is devoted to Sergei Ilyushin, the leading Soviet aircraft designer, who also cultivated an interest in aeronautics.
Mozhaisky's was the world's first airplane that was actually able to fly. Mozhaisky's success was a major boost to aircraft building everywhere.
Address: Vologda District, settlement of Mozhaiskoye
Work hours: 10 am - 5 pm
Daily, except Sundays, Mondays