Nearest places

Tomsk Polytechnic University (the 19th building)
The 19th building is one of the youngest Polytechnic buildings. It was built in 2001. It became a residence for the Humanities Department, which was also founded relatively not long ago – in 1998.
Tomsk Polytechnic University (the 2nd building)
This TPU building (the Chemical building) is the second one in the modern numbering of TPU buildings. It was also built the second – soon after the construction of the Main building.
Tomsk Polytechnic University (the 3rd building)
The building number 3 is usually called the Physics Building. In 1923 there was created the first Siberian Scientific Research Institute – the Institute of Applied Physics.

Tomsk Polytechnic University (the 1st, Mining Building)

Mining Building of TPU, 2013
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
During the construction of the first Tomsk Institute of Technology building in 1899, its first principal Efim Zubashev returned from the Siberian tour and turned to making a curriculum draft. He decided that apart from the two approved departments – the Mechanics and the Chemistry ones, the university needs at least two more – the Geology and the Construction Engineering Departments.
Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Tomsk or the Ural?
The state committee declined the suggestion, reasoning the construction of an independent Mining Institute in the Urals to be the more viable idea. The Russian Minister of Finance of that time Sergey Witte, who also initiated the creation of the TIT in Tomsk, saved the day. He promised to sponsor the creation of an Ural institute in the future, if the Tomsk Institute of Technology got the inquired departments then.

How a geologist designed a building
Zubashev invited Vladimir Obruchev, the famous geologist and researcher of Siberia and Central Asia from Irkutsk, to be the dean of the new Geology Department. Obruchev was to arrange the design and the construction of the building: to make an estimate, to determine functions, dimensions and location of the facilities and then to find an architect to build the project.
Obruchev calculated the Mining academic building to be two-storied with a basement and an attached three-storied residential wing for professors and lecturers. Apart from classrooms, the building needed rooms for museums. Even then, the institute possessed models of a gold washer, a mine and an open pit, obtained from the Imperial Tomsk University, which in its turn obtained them from the former Altay Museum in Barnaul.
A mining museum was to be found on the first story of the south wing. The second story was to house museums of mineralogy, geology and paleontology, the first of their kind in the Asian Russia. In the center of the building there were to be an entrance hall, a cloakroom, a staircase to the second story, a water closet and a booth for an assistant inspector or a doorkeeper.
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
The rooms’ dimensions were calculated conservatively, according to their real needs; their further contraction would prove inadequate and would spoil the studies, so that alterations and reconstructions would be needed in the nearest future.
From the V.A. Obruchev’s clarification to the TPU Mining Building project
Vladimir Afanasyevich Obruchev

Vladimir Afanasyevich Obruchev

Russiam geologist, paleontologist, geographer, academic and science-fiction writer; he participated in the Trans-Siberian railway planning and was the first dean of the Mining Department at the Tomsk Institute of Technology.
Vladimir Obruchev was born in the Tver Region in the family of the retired colonel, whose sister was married to the physiologist Ivan Sechenov.
After graduating at the Petersburg Mining Institute he went on an expedition to the Central Asia. During the expeditions Obruchev discovered several ranges in the Nan Shan mountains, the ranges Daursky and Borshchovochny, explored the Bei Shan highland. He also took part in the fourth expedition of Grigory Potanin.
Obruchev was the first full time geographist in Siberia. He studied glaciation and permafrost in Siberia, its tectonic framework and gold fields.
Obruchev planned the entire structure of the future TPU Mining building and was the dean of the department for eleven years. Then he moved to Simferopol and became the professor in the Taurida National University, later he moved to Moscow to become the professor of the Moscow Mining Academy. In 1947 he became the president of the Soviet Geographical Society (currently the Russian Geographical Society).
The most known Obruchev’s science-fiction books are the “Sannikov Land” and the “Travel to the past and the future”.
On 5th September 2010, as a part of the opening ceremony for the second series of the Architectural and Landscape Complex “The Alley of Geologists”, there was unveiled the monument of Obruchev Vladimir Afanasyevich.
The monument of V. A. Obruchev. Photo by
The monument of M. A. Usov. Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
Памятник «Рудокопу и Рудознатцу». Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
Памятник «Рудокопу и Рудознатцу». Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
He [V. A. Obruchev] liked Tomsk very much and he liked the Polytechnic University very much. The grandfather put all of his heart into this place. And, though he was forced to move from the TPI, he fondly remembered it till the end of his days.
Natalya Vladimirovna Obrucheva on the monument opening ceremony, 5 September 2010.
The “golden” building
The piece of land 6000 sagene squared in area on the intersection of the Bulvarnaya and the Elanskaya Streets (nowadays they are the Kirova Prospekt and the Sovetskaya Street respectively) was bought from lord Sochnev for 60000 rubles. It was an expensive arrangement, but the place was well located – next to the Chemical building, which allowed for the effective communications and supported the creation of the academic buildings ensemble.
The ceremony of breaking ground for the Mining building took place on 6 August 1902 right after the prayer service. The already started Russo-Japanese war lead to the shortage of labor power, finances and critical facilities, so the construction was completed only three years later. The building cost 325 545 rubles and 23 kopeck.
The construction of the TIT Mining building. Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
The TIT Mining building (the beginning of XX century). Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
Architectural style
Obruchev assigned the principal Tomsk architect Pyotr Fedorovsky, who also worked as an architecture professor at the TIT, to design the building. The construction was directed by the architect Fortunat Gut, who constructed the Main building of the university.
The Mining building is designed in the style of late Russian Classicism with elements of Renaissance and Modern. The composition is based on the rounded corner of the main entrance and the symmetrical arrangement of the side wings. On the side elevations one may recognize elements of the Main building, especially in the execution of eaves and windows. In total, this building corresponds to the common Fedorovsky style.
In 1974 the decree of the Council of Ministers of RSFSR announced the building to become the historical monument of federal significance. Then in 1993, the decree of Tomsk Region Governor declared the building to be the local architectural monument.

What is there to see?
The building houses the memorial museum rooms of the academics V. A. Obruchev and M. A. Usov, and the TPU Museum of Mineralogy. The entrance hall contains an exhibition of various ornamental and decorative stones, mineral resources samples.
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo by Vladimir Lavrentyev
Photo from the assests of the TPU Museum Complex
The information prepared with the help of TPU Museum Complex staff and the TPU On-line Encyclopedia