Maria Vasilievna Trubnikova (Ivasheva) (1835 – 1897)

Maria Trubnikova’s father – Vasily Ivashev is from a very large and rich noble family, and her mother is French – Camilla Le Dante. At first, Kamila lives with her mother, who is a governess in the family of Major General Petar Nikiforovich Ivashev (1767-1838). In the Ivashevi estate, Camilla sees for the first time the landlord’s son Vasily – a brilliant officer. The young girl falls in love with him, but the huge difference in their social status does not allow her to even hint at her feelings. After Vasily Ivashev is sentenced to hard labor as a Decembrist, she reveales her feelings to her mother, who informes the parents of the convicted Decembrist with a proposal for her daughter to share her fate with the fate of the convict. Vasily’s parents and relatives are sympathetic to the girl’s noble impulse and inform their son, who agrees with a sense of amazement and gratitude .
Camilla is allowed to go to her fiancé in September 1830, and in June of the following year, she leaves for Siberia. A week after the first visit, Vasily and Camila’s wedding takes place. In the marriage, Camilla gives birth to 4 children. With money sent by his father, Vasily builds a home for his family in Turin. The happy marriage, however, doesn’t last long: in December 1839, Camilla catches a cold and dies of premature birth, and her husband Vasily dies a year later .
In 1841 their children /Maria, Vera, and Peter/ receive permission to return with their grandmother to the Simbirsk province, where they are brought up in the home of their aunt /their father’s sister/ – Ekaterina Petrovna / Princess Khovanskaya / (1811 – 1855). By Decree of 1856, the family and the nobility are returned to the children of Vasiliy Ivashev.
Maria Ivasheva receives an excellent “male” education. Unlike traditional women’s education, like languages, music, and literature, Maria Ivasheva is taught exact sciences, history, and philosophy. She has free access to Khovanskaya’s rich library and since childhood has acquired the habit of systematic reading .
Throughout her life, Maria continues to educate herself, reading literature in the major European languages. She is particularly interested in sociology and the women’s issue.
In 1854 Maria Ivasheva marries the young clerk Konstantin Trubnikov, who captivates the bride with his liberalism and quotes from Herzen .
After marrying in 1855, she comes to St. Petersburg, where she makes her salon, which gathered famous public activists – liberals. Her husband, Konstantin Trubnikov, a Russian journalist and industrialist, publishes “Shareholder Magazine” and several other magazines, which also attracts reformist people to their home.
In her autobiography, her daughter Olga Konstantinova Bulanova Trubnikova presents her as follows: “… My mother – Maria Vasilievna Trubnikova was a woman with very advanced thinking and abilities. For her time she was very well-read and educated, with a very large public vein and great interest in public work … At home, there were constant conversations about women’s rights, or lively debates about the advantages of Russian music over Italian, or busy work on the organization of various women’s societies – the first manifestations of women’s amateurism, women’s labor cooperatives, the struggle for women’s higher education … My mother instilled in us respect for work and gave us an example of hard work … All my friends were treating my mother with great respect and always tried to talk to her even for a minute. My mother was deeply sympathetic to their goals, but she resolutely rejected terror, and this was the subject of eternal controversy” .
According to her daughter’s recollections, the women’s issue becomes central for her very early on. With people, she communicates easily. She has barely met Nadezhda Stasova and already invites her to breakfast, where Anna Filosofova and Alexandra Belozerska are also present. Thus begins her female circle and she becomes his neurological node. The circle begins with the only possible form of social activity then – philanthropy. Initially, they create the “Society of Cheap Accommodation” in 1860, and in 1863 the “Society of Translators”, one of which aims is worthy intellectual work and enlightenment of the Russian society A number of works on natural science, history, journalism, and children’s literature are translated under her editorship or by her. On a personal level, she leaves her husband, who wastes her capital, and with her four daughters supports herself with translations and literary works. Due to an illness, in 1881 she discontinues her public activity, and on April 28, 1897, she dies in Tambov, in the estate of her daughter, where she lives.