Interesting facts about the driver

Coachmen in our country were called coachmen who performed the pit duty - the transportation of mail, civil servants, and cargo. The word “coachman” itself comes from the Tatar “dzyam”, which means “road”.

10 interesting facts about drivers:

  1. In 1516, the Moscow prince Vasily Ivanovich established the Yamsk order, which was responsible for postal and transit traffic.
  2. Coachmen with their families were settled in separate settlements located near the post roads. They had to take care of the maintenance of the horses, ready to hit the road on demand. For their work, the coachmen received a salary from the state, as well as land plots and mows. They were exempted from paying taxes and conscription.
  3. The drivers were carefully selected. According to the decree of the sovereign, the coachmen should have taken "good people, the best, family-oriented." Preference was given to those whose ancestors were already coachmen. Thus, it was not an occasional occupation, but a serious matter, often passed from one generation to the next.
  4. In Moscow alone, there were five Yamskaya settlements. Until now, the memory of them has been preserved in the capital toponymy. For example, Tverskie-Yamskie streets, Yamskiy pole street, Nikoloyamskaya street and others.
  5. Many foreigners who have visited Russia described with amazement the dashing Russian coachmen. In the diary of A.S. Pushkin, there is an anecdote about how Prince Potemkin sent a courier to the Empress with an urgent report. The coachman rushed so fast that the courier's sword knocked on the milestones, as if on a palisade.
  6. In addition, being a coachman required strength and courage. Often they were attacked by robbers, as they were transporting large sums of money. All that was left was to rely on dashing horses capable of escaping the pursuit, and if it did not work out, then on their own strength and courage.
  7. In the countries of Europe, a post horn has become widespread, with the help of which signals were given. The same practice was introduced in Russia by Peter the Great, but horns never became popular: Russian coachmen preferred whistles and loud shouts. By the way, the candidate for the position of coachman was required to be able to whistle.
  8. Only at the end of the 18th century bells began to be used, which were attached to an arc, which is why they got the name - arched bells. The ringing of the bell could be heard two miles away, in addition, with its ringing, it entertained the driver and the courier. It is interesting that, apart from Russia, such bells were not widespread anywhere. The center of bell casting was the city of Valdai. Even a legend has survived that in the 15th century a symbol of the Novgorod freemen, a veche bell, was carried by the city. After the annexation of Novgorod to Moscow, Ivan the Third ordered to deliver him to the "captivity of Moscow". Near Valdai, the bell fell from the cart and, rolling down the mountain, crumbled into small pieces. Enterprising Valdai gathered them and started their own foundry.
  9. The unique Coachman Museum is located in the town of Gavrilov Yam, Yaroslavl Region. Next to it is the only monument to the coachman in our country. Visitors can get acquainted with the history of yamskoy business in Russia and see the collection of coachmen's utensils.
  10. The profession of a coachman is undoubtedly one of the most popular in Russian culture. It is impossible to list all the songs, poems, stories in which this person is mentioned, who is engaged in a difficult but necessary business for the state.