Aprelevka Record Plant

The history

German businessmen Gottlieb Moll and his son Johann Moll established Aprelevka Record Plant not far from Moscow, in Aprelevka village, on April 1, 1910. It was a successful start – during the first year of its operation more than 400 thousand gramophone records under the “Metropol Record” brand were produced.

After the Great October Socialist Revolution, the plant was nationalized. Johann Moll was arrested, and only later by the end of the 1920s, he managed to leave the country and move to Germany. Soviet times became the golden age of for the Plant. Vladimir Lenin recorded his speeches there. In 1925 the plant was renamed “Fabrika pamyati 1905 goda” (“Factory in the memory of 1905”) and later as “Aprelevsky zavod pamyati 1905 goda” (“Aprelevka Plant commemorating the 1905th year”). During the Second World War (1941-1945), the Plant was producing entirely records with one song – “Svyaschennaya voyna” (“The Holy War”), all the rest production facilities served for the needs of the war.

In the early 1950s, the Plant started producing vinyl records, in 1952 the first long-playing records were manufactured, in 1961 – the first stereophonic ones. In 1964, Aprelevka Record Plant became the integral part of “Melodia” record company, the production of the flexible records started the same year. It was the time when Aprelevka Record Plant manufactured the major part of all records produced in the country and reached the volume of 50 million records annually by the 1980’s.

The changes in the country in the 1990’s effected “Melodia” operation, all enterprises became independent, at the same time, the demand for records decreased dramatically, as well as consumers’ purchasing power, and the market was invaded by CDs. The Aprelevka Record Plant became unprofitable; its cooperation with the independent clients or cassettes’ production could not by then help to prop up the Plant. The last batch of records was produced in 1997. In 2007, B.V. Chukhontsev, entrepreneur and dentist, opened the Museum of Aprelevka Record Plant (its other name is “Museum of the neglected people and objects”) in the former Plant head office.

Records, gramophones and various rarities, which evidenced the glorious history of the Plant, are stored in the museum Collection repository.


Exhibits in the Museum Collection