Father of the composer (b. 20/31 July 1795 in Glazov, near Vyatka; d. 9/21 January 1880 in Saint Petersburg), born Ilya Petrovich Chaykovsky (Илья Петрович Чайковский).
Ilya was the fifth son of Pyotr Fyodorovich Tchaikovsky (1745–1818) and his wife Anastasiya (b. Posokhova, 1751–?), and became one of the foremost metallurgists in Russia. After graduating from the Saint Petersburg Mining College, from 1818 to 1821 he served as a mining engineer at the Perm iron works, and between 1821 to 1831 in the Department for Iron and Salt Affairs, where he enjoyed a broad authority within the Yekaterinburg region—from governing local factories to repealing the decisions of local courts.
On 11/23 September 1827 he married for the first time to Mariya Karlovna Keizer (d. 1831), and they had a daughter— Zinayda (1829–1878).
Over the next few years Ilya Tchaikovsky served as administrator of the Onezhsky salt board (1831–1837) and director of the Kamsko-Votkinsk iron works (1837–1848). In 1848 Ilya Tchaikovsky resigned his post in Votkinsk and brought his family to Moscow, and later, in anticipation of a new appointment, to Saint Petersburg. However, the expected position in the capital did not materialize, and in May 1849 he returned with his family to the Urals, where he was appointed manager of the Alapayevsk and Nizhe-Nevyanskey iron works (1849–1852).
He married his second wife, Aleksandra Assier (1812–1854), on 1/13 October 1833, and the couple had seven children: Yekaterina (d. in infancy); Nikolay (1838–1911); Pyotr (1840–1893), the composer; Aleksandra (1841–1891); Ippolit (1843–1927); Anatoly (1850–1915); and Modest (1850–1916).
In 1852 Ilya returned to Saint Petersburg, and in 1858 he was appointed director of the Technological Institute in the capital, where he worked until his retirement in 1863. He married for the third and final time to Yelizaveta Mikhaylovna Lipport (1829–1910).
Ilya Tchaikovsky enjoyed music, and played the flute sufficiently well to participate in amateur concerts, and he also encouraged his children's interest in music. Although he hoped that his son Pyotr would have a successful career in the civil service, he gave both moral and financial support to his son's decision to leave the Ministry of Justice to try to become a professional composer.
Tchaikovsky's correspondence with Ilya Tchaikovsky:
This page was last updated on 14 February 2013