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Chistopol Watch Factory (ЧЧЗ / ChChZ)

On October 20, 1941, the people and equipment comprising the Second Watch Factory were evacuated to Chistopol, Tatarstan, a small town on the south bank of the Kama River. In total, 170 trucks full of equipment and 488 individuals (including 128 engineers/technicians) were evacuated to Chistopol. 


Severe winter weather caused delays, but by the summer of 1942, the newly-established factory was fully operational. The Chistopol Watch Factory produced both pocket- and wristwatch variations of the Type-1 caliber which bore a jewel count, date stamp, and factory logo on the movement. Like all factories of this era, Chistopol was designated a number (Factory 835) and not limited to watch production. Rather, the plant was responsible for manufacturing any necessary products for the war effort, such as magnetic fuses, weaponry, and other combat materials. The 488 evacuated Muscovites were not enough to meet production demand during the war years, and the factory was forced to recruit local laborers as young as 14 and 15 years old.

After the war ended, the plant focused heavily on civilian wristwatch production. Chistopol Watch Factory would eventually become known as Vostok.

(Sources: 1, 2, 3)

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