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Born 1814 in Merthyr Tydfil, Great Britain; died June 17 (29), 1889, in St. Petersburg. British entrepreneur and Russian capitalist.
The son of an engineer, Hughes in 1860 became director of a British metallurgical plant that filled orders for the Russian government. In 1869, after receiving a concession from the Russian government to build a metallurgical plant, he formed the New Russia Company, a joint-stock company for the production of coal, iron, and rails. The company owned the Hughes Metallurgical Plant, built between 1869 and 1872 in the village of Iuzovka (now Donetsk). Subsidies from the Russian government enabled Hughes to transform his plant into a large combine for the production of rails and other metal goods; it was at the combine’s iron mines that the Iuzovka strike of 1887 took place.