Russian Revolution, Civil War and USSR 1917-1991

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EuroDocs > History of Russia: Primary Documents > Russian Revolution, Civil War and USSR 1917-1991

Letters and other various documents from 20th century Russia.
(20th century; Russian transcriptions)
Firsthand account of Henry Labor about his family moving to the Volga region during the time of political turmoil between Nikolai and the Communists. Mr. Labor immigrated to America in 1934.
Mr. Labor includes an account of life under the Soviet regime.
(Early 20th century; English translation)
Memoirs and links to genealogical information on White Guard members.
(1900-1991; Russian transcriptions)
Pictures of Stalin.
Collection of Russian Literature.
  • General Census of Soviet Union
(1905-31 December 1918; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Documents of October Revolution, Civil War, Red terror, regional movement, and directives of RSDLP(b).
(1910-1919; Russian transcription)
Website of old digitized Russian newspapers.
(Russian; 20th century)
Manifestos, petitions and other political documents.
(20th century; English translation)
International and local legal documents of the USSR.
(1883-1936; Russian transcription)
Documents from the life of Andropov.
(1914-1984; Russian facsimiles and photos)
Search and browse the Immortal Barracks here.
Includes facsimiles of photos, letters, and memories of victims of Soviet political oppression.
(1917-1991; photos, Russian facsimiles and interface)
Graphs representing 1917 election results, 'illustrating the relative appeal to Russian voters in 1917 of Bolsheviks and other leading parties."
(1917; English graphics and interface)
Manifest declaring Nicholas II's abdication of the throne. He was replaced by the provisional government.
(2 March 1917; Russian transcription)
Compiled by Alpha History.
(March 1917-November 1917; English translations)
First document of the Bolsheviks since they came to power.
Written by Lenin, declares that the provisional government set up by Nikolai II has been overthrown.
(25 October (7 November) 1917; Old Russian facsimile, modern Russian translation)
Lenin's decree on peace ending Russia's involvement in WWI. Published in Известие.
(English translation; 27 October 1917)
Russian Orthodox Church organizes its management after being released from autocratic control.
(3 November 1917; Old Russian facsimile, modern Russian translation)
Includes resolutions, data, and decrees.
(1 December 1917 - 19 August 1991; Russian facsimiles, English translations, Ukrainian interface)
Documents from generals Karnilov and Denikin from their time in Southern Russian Empire.
(1917-1919; Russian transcription)
Government policy for obtaining grain from peasants.
(1917-1939; images, Russian commentaries and transcription)

Speeches and images of Trotsky.
Discussion of Trotsky's government activity.
(1917-1940; images, Russian commentaries and transcription)
Reports, telegrams, memorandums, and other documents about US-Soviet relations from the early days of the USSR to the Cold War (up to Cuban missile crisis).
Compiled by the Library of Congress.
(1917-1962; Russian and English facsimiles with English commentary)
Letters, memorandums, speeches, and other documents about Soviet programs (ranging from the Secret Police to Perestroika).
Compiled by the Library of Congress.
(1917-1990; Russian facsimiles with English commentary)
Compilation of documents dealing with the state and the party and the economy and society.
(1917-1953; German transcriptions)
Images of fighting and major people of the 1917 Revolution.
(1917; images, English captions)
Project hosted by the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek in Munich which has key 20th century Russian and Soviet Union historical documents.
(1917-1991; facsimiles, German translations)
Account by Countess Sophie Buxhoeveden, a lady-in-waiting for the Romanov family. Includes account of their murder.
(1917-1919, published in 1928; English translation)
RDRLP (B) calls for revolution of workers and peasants.
(1917; Russian facsimile)
Order to military of Russia that they obey only the Soviet.
(March 14, 1917; English translation)
Lenin declares rights for national minorities of Russia.
(November 15, 1917; Russian transcription)
(18 December 1917; English translation)
Also available in Russian.
(18 - 23 December 1917; English translation)
Collection of digitized materials selected from the Harvard Project on the Soviet Social System (HPSSS), consisting chiefly of summary transcripts of 705 interviews conducted with refugees from the USSR during the early years of the Cold War.
(1917 to mid-1940s; interview page images accompanied by text files, manuals and guides)
Posters designed by V. Lebedev for the windows of ROSTA, the state news agency of Soviet Russia.
From Dartmouth Digital Library Initiatives.
(1917-1922; color facsimiles and brief descriptions)
Transcriptions of Soviet laws from 1917-1918.
(1 December 1917 - 31 December 1918; Russian transcriptions)
(1 January 1918 - 30 June 1918; modern Russian translation)
Compiled by Alpha History.
(1918-1922; English translations)
Collection of 47 digital facsimiles of Soviet Era books.
From Collections at Princeton University Digital Library.
(1918-1938; Russian facsimiles)
Primary sources dealing with the first Soviet security organization.
Primary sources found by clicking "Primary Sources" on "Sections" menu, or scrolling towards bottom of page.
(1918-1929; English translations)
(6 January 1918; modern Russian transcription)
Decree by the Central Executive Committee of the Congress of Soviets, followed Lenin's "Decree on Land." Both decrees were superseded by the 1922 Land Code.
(February 19, 1918; English translation)
Treaty ended Russian involvement in WWI.
English version available here.
(3 March 1918; Old Russia transcription, modern Russian translation)
Includes resolutions, NKVD orders, and special reports.
(10 June 1918 - 25 January 1960; Russian transcriptions)
Declared elimination of opponents to the Bolsheviks a necessity.
(5 September 1918; Old Russian transcription, modern Russian translation)
(December 1918; English translation)
Photo archives of a Canadian military expedition into Siberia.
(1919; images)

From New York Public Library's Digital Library.
(1918-1922; facsimiles of posters, placards and broadsides)
Documents from General Karnilov's time in the Southern Russian Empire.
(1918-1919; Russian transcription)
Documents about military communism.
(1918-1921; images, Russian commentaries)
(1918-1921; Russian transcription)
Budyonnny was a close ally of Stalin.
(1918-1922; Russian transcriptions)
Outlines archives centralization system and their transition under Soviet governance.
(June 1, 1918; Russian transcription)
Images, information, and quotes from documents regarding Saratov court cases of Orthodox priests.
(1918; images, commentaries, Russian transcription)
Documents discuss pro-German white movement in Western Russian Empire.
(1918-1920; Russian transcription)
Documents quote RCP (b) national policy and discuss RCP (b)'s attempts to establish power in Ukraine.
(1918-1922; commentaries, Russian transcription)
Discuss conditions of factory workers: their salaries, education, health, as well as the equipment they used.
(1918-1932; commentaries, Russian transcription)
(1918-1991; images, Russian facsimiles)
(14 November 1918 - 18 November 1918; Russian facsimiles)
Author's first-hand account of events during visit to Russia in February and March of 1919.
Includes description of Russian famine caused by the Civil War.
Includes author interviews with several prominent members of the Soviet government as well as ordinary citizens of Soviet Russia.
(February, March 1919; English transcription)
Includes documents from 1st Congress of 1919 to its dissolution in 1943. Also includes records from the Sino-Soviet split of 1956-1966.
Includes records of proceedings and speeches by party leaders.
(1919-1966; English transcriptions)
Various documents from the Comintern journal, including speeches and writings from party leaders.
Includes the old series (1919-1924) and the new series (1924-1926).
(1919-1926; English translations)
(1919; Russian and German facsimiles)
(24 January 1919; English translations)
Documents discusses peasants' rebellion against communism.
(1919-1922; Russian transcription)
Otto Ruhle accounts his feelings about the USSR and communism to the 3rd International congress.
(1920; English translation)
Documents discuss 1921-1922 famine, other regional problems, and RKP (b) policies regarding church, minorities, intelligentsia, and gulags.
Documents from Lenin's death discussing party leadership changes.
(1920-1929; Russian transcription)
Treaties regarding Hungarian border: From Treaty of Tianon to Moscow Agreement.
Published by the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, US Department of State.
(1920-1945; facsimiles)
Trotsky's suggestions to the Army for combining military and labor duties.
(January 15, 1920; Russian transcription)
Trotsky's suggestions to the RCP (b) for land and food policy during military communism.
(February, 1920; Russian transcription)
Images, quotes from documents, and discussion of establishment of communism in Donbass.
(1920; images, Russian commentaries and transcription)
By Lenin's decision, the party banned factions and groups within the RCP.
(March 1921; Old Russian transcription, modern Russian translation)
Facsimiles of newspapers from the Kronstadt rebels, who fought against the new Bolshevik regime.
English translations of the newspapers available [1] here.
(7-17 March 1921; Russian facsimiles)
Between Russia and Turkey.
(16 March 1921; Russian transcription)
Communist party newspaper for city of Kronstadt.
(1921; Russian transcription)
RKP (b) order replacing surplus grain tax.
Marks beginning of New Economic Policy (NEP).
(March 21, 1921; Russian commentaries, image, and transcription)
Documents discuss pharmaceutics and free trade during New Economic Policy (NEP).
(1921-1922; Russian commentaries and transcription)
Written shortly before his death, Lenin orders the party to remove Stalin.
(1922; English translation)
Documents discuss Bolsheviks fight with Siberian political opponents.
(1922-1923; Russian commentaries and transcription)
Formed the USSR, sparked debate about leadership of the Union.
(30 December 1922; modern Russian transcription)
Documents of the Communist Party including transcripts from meetings, resolutions, and speeches.
(2 November 1923 - 31 January 1955; Russian transcriptions)
(1924; image, Russian transcription)
Site contains numerous testimonies about death of Lenin and Stalin’s attitude about Lenin’s heritage.
(1924; transcription in Russian)
Stalin expresses his personal opinion of Trotsky at a Soviet Trade Union conference.
(November 19, 1924; Russian transcription)
Part of the JDC archives.
Includes memos and minutes from meetings.
(1926-1937; English facsimiles)
"Trotskyites" criticized CPSU foreign policy and supported workers.
(23 October 1927; Russian facsimile, transcription)
Collectivization of peasant farms and crops given in percentages.
(1927-1933; Russian facsimile)
(Oober 19, 1928; Russian transcription)
(November 19, 1928; Russian transcription)
(20th century; English translation)
( 1928; Russian facsimile)
(July 27, 1929; Russian transcription)
Declares that Bukharin must "recognize the undeniable success of the Party" despite his predictions.
Also warns Rykov, Tomsky, and Ugarov not to associate with right-wing deviants.
(17 November 1929; Russian facsimile and transcription)
Documents discuss arrests, political accusations, and life in gulags.
Includes documents from Shalamov's life.
(1929-1953; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Documents discuss 1932-1933 famine, political repressions, and Soviet foreign relations.
(1930-1939; Russian transcription)
Issued by Central Committee of Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
(January 5, 1930; Russian transcription)
(February 27 – May 30, 1930; Russian transcription)
Soviet posters from the early 1930s promoting the First Five Year Plan (1928-1932) for industrialization.
From the Special Collections Research Center of the University of Chicago Library.
(1930-1932; color facsimiles and English commentary)
Claims success for collective farms.
Russian transcription also available here.
(2 March 1930; Russian transcription)
Documents discuss Bolshevik cruelty in the dispossession of the kulaks.
(1930; images, transcription in Russian)
Letter written by Mayakovskiy before he committed suicide.
( April 30, 1930; images, Russian commentaries)
Includes quotes from witnesses of dispossession.
(1930; transcription in Russian)
Cases of German arrests.
(1930-1941; Russian facsimiles and transcription)
Secret archives and family interviews from survivors of the Stalin Terror.
(1930s-1950s; Russian language with some English translations of: family archives, letters, diaries, personal papers, memoirs, photographs, artifacts, sound and video files)
Documents from court cases and discussing the repression, government orders, and personal letters.
(1930 - 1953; Russian transcription)
(March 19, 1931; Russian transcription)
Rules and results of Volga region collectivization.
(July 30, 1931; Russian transcription)
Documents discuss famine and cannibalism in Russia and Ukraine.
( 1932-1933; Russian facsimiles)
Quotes from documents and commentaries.
(1932-1933; Russian commentaries)
Financial Times article by Gareth Jones.
(April 13, 1933; English transcription)
Document discusses repressions against priests and peasants.
(1933; Russian transcription)
(1933; Russian facsimile)
Resolution came about shortly after Stalin's assassination of Sergey Kirov.
(1 December 1934; Russian facsimile and transcription)
(December 1934; English translation)
Interrogation documents and witnesses of Kirov's murder.
(1934; images, Russian transcription)
Records from Stalin's attempt to create an alternative to Palestine.
Includes a map, an authorization document, propaganda posters, and video clips.
Click the number on the bottom right-hand corner to flip through panels of the exhibition.
(1934; images, English interface, Russian and Yiddish facsimiles)
Part of Soviet policy of collective security against Nazi Germany.
(2 May 1935; Russian facsimile and transcription)
Official USSR Baltic policy documents from the People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs (NKVD).
(1935-1945; Russian transcription)
USSR constitution, criminal code, and national anthem
(1936; Russian transcription)
Many provisions of the constitution were ignored.
English translation available here.
(5 December 1936; Russian transcription)
Details from Spanish Civil War with counsel for the USSR.
(1936; Russian transcription)
USSR international and local legal documents.
(1936-1948; Russian transcription)
Stalin decides to eliminate "'enemy' social groups" and strike on general areas with rebellion.
(2 July 1937; Russian transcription)
Repression orders for arresting and exiling to gulags: kulaks, political dissidents, and other "anti-Soviet elements."
(July 30, 1937; Russian transcription)
Yezhov's request to increase number of people for repression. Stalin proceeded to increase the numbers by more than Yezhov's request.
(21 October 1937; Russian facsimile)
Ayyub Baghirov's account of accusations, trials, and life in the Kolyma gulag and exile, which he was in from 1937 to 1955.
(1937-1955; English translation)
List of people court marshaled by USSR Supreme Court.
(1937-1950; Russian transcription)
Also includes territory treaty between Germany and Soviet Union for Poland, Baltic countries, Western Belarus, and Ukraine.
German transcription available here and here.
(23 August 1939; Russian transcriptions)
Includes documents, such as telegrams, that were kept secret at the time of the pact here and facsimiles of documents here.
(20 August 1939 - 10 January 1941; Ukrainian interface, Russian transcriptions, facsimiles)
Telegrams, translated into English, from each day of the Russo-Finnish War.
Also available in original Finnish and Swedish.
(30 November 1939-14 March 1940)
(30 November 1939-14 March 1940; maps, English transcriptions, commentary, and bibliography)
Personal accounts from Spanish Civil War of a Russian volunteer.
(1939; Russian transcription)
Video abour war between Soviet Union and Finland.
(November, 1939 - March, 1940; Russian text)
(November, 1939 - March, 1940; Russian facsimile)
Orders, maps, and images from the war.
(November, 1939 - March, 1940; Russian facsimile)
Non-aggression pact between the Soviet Union and Germany, including secret protocol.
(English translation, August 23, 1939)
Documents from German Foreign Office archives.
US State Department publication.
(1939-1941; English translations)
Documents and agreements from the Avalon Project.
(1939-1941; English translations)
Written music, lyrics and recordings from many Soviet songs.
A collection of primary documents from the Internet Modern History Sourcebook.
(1939-1945; transcriptions and translations)
Official (mainly U.S.) government histories, source documents, and other primary references.
(1939-1945; English transcriptions and translations)
Documents the uneasy alliance between Britain and the USSR during WWII.
From the archives of the BBC.
(1939-1945; facsimiles, video and audio files)
Documents and photos of the relationships of Poland with the Soviet Union and Ukrainian nationalists.
(1939-1945; images, facsimiles, text in English)
Official Soviet government order to execute 25,000 Polish war prisoners.
(March 5, 1940; Russian facsimile)
World War II and post-war documents.
(1940-1949; Russian transcription)
Testimonies about the massacre of Polish war prisoners.
(1940; Russian facsimiles)
Library with testimonies and accounts of the Katyn massacre.
(1940; Russian transcriptions and translations)
Documents of Stalin during his Soviet leadership.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1941-1962; English translations)
Site includes photos and accounts of Nazi atrocities in Russia, organized by region.
(1941-1945; photos, Russian transcriptions with commentary)
(16 June 1941-31 May 1945; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Audio recordings from Soviet military officials, organized by last name, click on letters above photos to browse by last name.
(1941-1945; Russian interface and audio)
Telegraphs, orders, and resolutions.
Also includes a section on Russia's fighting in Estonia, here.
(21 June 1941 - 5 January 1942; Russian transcriptions)
Operational summaries, orders, and other Russian military communications.
(7 July 1941 - 24 July 1941; Russian transcriptions)
(22 June 1941; English translation)
Stalin attempts to explain foreign policy and military failures.
(3 July 1941; Russian facsimile and transcription)
Orders to exile Germans to Siberia and Kazakhstan.
(August 26, 1941; Russian transcription)
List of exiled families.
(1941; Russian transcription)
Includes quotes from documents and images of execution of the Jews.
(1941 - 1943; images, Russian transcription and facsimiles)
Quotes from documents and facsimiles of a Jewish family.
(1941-1943; Russian facsimiles and transcription)
Government directives, orders, and document about those lost in the war.
Personal cases of soldiers.
(1941-1945; Russian facsimiles)
(1941-1945; Russian facsimiles and transcription)
Journals and letters about World War II.
(1941-1945; Russian transcription)
Names of those killed in the Eastern Front.
Search by name, birth year, or military title.
(1941-1945; Russian records)
Collection of documents related to WWII.
From the Avalon Project.
(1938-1947; English)
Documents written by Vlasov and commentaries of his service in the Red Army and Wehrmacht.
(1941-1946; Russian facsimiles)
(1941 - 1942; Russian transcription)

Discusses the power struggle for Soviet leadership resulting from Stalin's death.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1944-1962; transcriptions and facsimiles)
National anthem of the USSR. Adopted in 1944 until 1991.
(Russian with English translation; 1944)
Telegrams reporting the efforts of the movement.
(1944-1945; Russian facsimiles)
Documents discuss post-World War II foreign relations.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(September 1939 to January 1957; English transcriptions and facsimiles)
Orders, personal documents, data, and images of the Battle of Stalingrad.
(July 17, 1942 – February 2, 1943; maps, photos, facsimiles, transcription in Russian)
Video of General Vlasov giving a talk in Wehrmacht.
(1943; Russian facsimiles)
Documents from the conference between the USSR, Great Britain, and the US.
(February 4-11, 1943; Russian transcription)
Documents from conferences between the USSR, Great Britain, and the US.
(1943, 1945; Russian transcription)
Declassified documents from an American intelligence program.
(1943-1980; English)
(19 December 1944-August 1956; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Stalin's orders for deporting the Tatars, Bulgarians, and people of the Northern Caucasus.
(1944; Russian transcription)
Letters, treaties, memorandums, and other documents relating to Soviet nuclear development.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1944-1991; transcriptions and facsimiles)
Collection of communist documents from Soviet history.
Documents from the Soviet Union unveiled after its collapse.
(Facsimiles; 1917-1991)
  • Foreign relations between the USSR and the US
Documents from US State Department and University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Hopkins mission to Moscow, 1945
Soviet resolutions on UN armed forces on non-ex-enemy territory 1946
US Antarctic policy and other countries' claims, 1946
US policy for polar regions, including Iceland, Greenland, Alaska, and areas of Siberia, 1947
US trade policy with Eastern Europe and USSR, 1951
US-Russia meeting about atomic policy, 1 May 1954
US State Department memo about USSR in regards to atomic policy
9 July 1954
3 November 1954
US-Soviet Atomic Relations 1953-1954
9 October 1953
6 December 1953
7 December 1953
21 December 1953
22 December 1953
29 November 1954
US establishes information and persons exchange with USSR, 1958-1960
Kennedy-Khrushchev exchanges, 1960-1963
U.S.-Soviet Space Cooperation, 1961-1963
January 1969-October 1970
October 1971–May 1972
June 1972–August 1974
August 1974–December 1976
(1945-1976; English transcriptions)

Book includes various accounts from Russian soldiers involved in the Battle of Berlin.
(16 April 1945 - 2 May 1945; Russian transcription)
(8 May 1945; Russian transcription)
Official agreement establishing an International Military Tribunal between the US, France, Great Britain, and the USSR.
For the "punishment and prosecution of the major war criminals of the European axis".
(1946; transcription)
Documents related to USSR foreign relations and policy, particularly in regards to the US.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1946-1991; transcriptions and facsimiles)
Documents regarding the relationship of the Soviet Union with the United States during the Cold War.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1946-1991; transcriptions and facsimiles)
(1947-1960; Russian facsimiles)
International and local legal documents of the USSR.
(1948-1956; Russian transcription)
Documentary about testing the first Soviet nuclear bomb.
(August 29, 1949; Russian text)
Documents relating to relations between the Soviet Union and North Korea.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1949-1981; translations, transcriptions, and facsimiles)
Documents about situation in Hungary, with Pasternak, and with other economic and political issues in the USSR.
(1950 - 1959; Russian transcription)
Video about Stalin's death.
(1953; Russian text)
The CPSU soon decided to execute Beria, the head of Stalin's secret police.
(7 July 1953; Russian facsimile and transcription)
Declassified CIA documents analyzing Soviet (and Chinese) internal politics.
(1953-1973; PDF facsimiles)
Treaty of friendship and cooperation between Soviet Union and other communist satellite states in Eastern Europe.
(May 1, 1955; English)
Document about Stalin's oppression and personality cult.
Also available in Russian here, and in English English here.
(30 June 1956; Russian transcription)
The conclusion of a clash between Krushchev's reformist leadership and conservatives in the post-Stalin era.
(29 June 1957; Russian transcription)
Reports from Morris Childs, an FBI secret agent, about the Soviet Union. Morris met with Mao and Khrushchev on some of his missions.
(30 August 1957-13 March 1960; English facsimiles and transcriptions)
Memos, letters, and reports relating to the publish of Pasternak's controversial novel in Russian for the first time.
(1958; English facsimiles)
Agreements, reports of meetings, reports of negotiations, and plans for cooperation.
Also includes reports of joint measures carried about by Czechoslovakia and USSR.
(1958-1988; Czech and Russian facsimiles)
Documents discuss USSR foreign relations and internal political changes.
(1960-1969; Russian transcription)
(1961; Russian transcription)
Video and information about shooting down the demonstration of the workers in Novocherkassk.
(1962; facsimiles, images, text in Russian)
Documents about the Cuban Missile Crisis and resulting Soviet-American relations.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(August 1961 to January 1968, mainly October 1962; English transcriptions, facsimiles)
Led to the end of the Cuban Missile Crisis.
(28 October 1962; Russian transcription)
Resolution number P164/I.
Marks the end of the Khrushchev Era and its "thaw."
(13-14 October 1964; Russian transcription)
Documents of the US State Department
(October 1964; English transcriptions of correspondence and memorandums)
Includes quotes from documents about economic reform.
(1965; Russian transcription)
Official documents about Leonov, the first man to spacewalk.
(March 18, 1965; facsimiles, images, text in Russian)
Documents about the Interkit organization that dealt with policies towards China.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1966-1988; transcriptions and facsimiles)
Video about the occupation of Prague by Warsaw Pact countries lead by the USSR.
(1968; Russian transcription)
Documents regarding the Soviet response to the 1968 Prague Spring.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(28 February to 26 November 1968; transcriptions and facsimiles)
Information about dissidents and their work.
(September 20, 1968; Russian transcription)
Quotes from documents of the investigation about the death of Gagarin.
(1968; Russian transcription)
65 issues of magazine never officially published by dissidents.
Court cases, repressions, and problems for dissidents in the USSR.
(1968 - 1983; Russian transcription)
Video about construction of Baikal-Amur Mainline
(1970s; facsimiles, text in Russian)
Constitution and foreign relation documents.
(1970 -1979; Russian transcription)

Documents from the human rights group.
(1970-1985; Russian facsimiles)

  • The Diary of Anatoly Chernyaev (1972-1991)
Chernyaev served as a Central Committee analyst until 1986, when he became Gorbachev’s top foreign policy adviser.
These diary entries offer a valuable look into Chernyaev life and perspectives.
1972, 1972 English translation
1973, 1973 English translation
1974, 1974 English translation
1985, 1985 English translation
1986, 1986 English translation
1987, 1987 English translation
1988, 1988 English translation
1989, 1989 English translation
1990, 1990 English translation
1991, 1991 English translation
(1972-1991; Russian transcriptions, English translations)

SALT I documents from the State Department
Treaty between the Soviets and the US limiting offensive arms signed in Moscow.
Bans construction of ICBM launchers.
Includes protocol and treaty understanding.
(26 May 1972; English transcription)

(August 24, 1972; Russian transcription)
Quotes about Solzhenitsin's condition in the 1970s.
(1973 - 1974; Russian transcription)
Includes human rights observations of Lyudmila Alexeyeva, founder of the Moscow Helsinki group.
Also includes human rights reports from other groups such as the US State Department and the CIA.
(4 July 1975-20 December 1992; English transcriptions and facsimiles)
Plans and protocols for coordination between the KGB and the VKR (Czechoslovak Ministry of Interior.
(1976-1989; Czech facsimiles)
Reports, briefings, and memorandums for Carter about various Soviet dissidents.
(10 February 1977-5 October 1980; English facsimiles)
Reports and briefings for Carter regarding Soviet situation.
(24 August 1977-29 October 1980; English facsmiles)
(30 April 1978-23 August 1990; Russian facsimiles)
Treaty between the Soviets and the US limiting offensive arms. Signed in Vienna.
SALT II documents from the State Department, 1972-1980
Treaty Protocol
Memo of Treaty understanding
(18 June 1979; English transcriptions)
Russian facsimile of document also available here and here.
(12 December 1979; Russian facsimile and transcription)
(28 August 1980-13 December 1981; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Letters between Reagan, Gorbachev, Andropov, and Chernenko.
(23 August 1983-20 September 1988; Russian facsimiles and translations)
An "architect of perestroika." One of Gorbachev's closest advisers.
(20 October 1983-18 October 1991; audio recordings, Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Famous anti-soviet speech of Ronald Reagan delivered in Orlando, Florida.
(March 8, 1983; English)
Record of special Politburo session in which Gorbachev was elected.
(11 March 1985; English translation)
Reagan expresses hope for an arms solution.
(11 March 1985; English transcription)
Yakovlev prepared this for Gorbachev. Analyzes Reagan and his proposal for a US-Russia meeting.
(12 March 1985; English translation)
Discusses future Afghan policy of the Soviets.
(14 March 1985; English translation)
Gorbachev discusses meetings with foreign leaders.
Gorbachev calls war in Afghanistan a "bleeding wound."
(15 March 1985; English translation)
(15 March 1985-28 December 1988; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
(4 April 1985; English translation)
(1985; Russian facsimile, video, and transcription)
  • Letters between Reagan and Gorbachev
Gorbachev's first letter to Reagan
Gorbachev accepts Reagan's invitation to meet.
(24 March 1985)
Reagan's response
(4 April 1985)
Reagan's second response
Discusses SDI and difficulties in US-Soviet relations.
(30 April 1985)
Gorbachev's response
Demonstrates Soviet distaste for SDI.
(10 June 1985)
(English facsimiles)
Post-Geneva letter from Gorbachev
(5 December 1985; English translation)
Reagan's post-Geneva response
(Early December 1985; English facsimile)
Minutes from meeting where Shevardnadze was appointed.
(29 June 1985; English translation)
Politburo discusses economic policy and denies Andrei Sakharov's wife permission to travel abroad for medical care.
(29 August 1985; English translation)
(September 1985; English facsimile)
(Fall 1985; English facsimile)
  • Records from the US-Soviet Geneva Summit
First private meeting between Reagan and Gorbachev
First plenary session
Second plenary meeting
Mostly discussion of SDI.
Mrs. Reagan has Mrs. Gorbacheva for tea
Second private meeting between Reagan and Gorbachev
The leaders discuss possibilities of nuclear reductions and weapons in space.
Dinner hosted by the Gorbachevs
(19 November 1985)
Third Plenary Meeting
Mostly discussion of SDI.
Fourth Plenary Meeting
The leaders discuss drafting a joint statement about the summit.
Mrs. Gorbacheva has Mrs. Reagan for tea
Dinner hosted by the Reagans
(20 November 1985)
Yakovlev's handwritten notes from Geneva
(19-20 November 1985; Russian facsimile)
Excerpt from Anatoly Chernyaev's Diary on the Geneva Summit
(24 November 1985; English translation)
Gorbachev's speech at Communist Party of the Soviet Union conference
Gorbachev discusses the Geneva summit.
(28 November 1985; English translation)
Yakovlev outlines a proposal to change the Soviet political system.
(25 December 1985; English translation)
Suggestions for national and party development. Report was read by Gorbachev.
(February 25, 1986; Russian facsimile)
  • Preparations for the US-Soviet Reykjavik Summit
Gorbachev proposes a summit
Letter from Gorbachev to Reagan.
(15 September 1986; English translation)
Discussion of Reykjavik possibilities in a Politburo session
(22 September 1986; English translation)
Gorbachev discusses preparations for Reykjavik
From Anatoly Chernyaev's notes.
(29 September 1986; English translation)
George Shultz's memo to Ronald Reagan about preparing for Reykjavik
(2 October 1986; English facsimile)
Gorbachev's instructions to his group preparing for Reykjavik
(4 October 1986; English translations)
US National Security Council's analysis of Gorbachev's goals and tactics pre-Reykjavik
(4 October 1986; English facsimile)
Politburo session on preparations for Reykjavik
(8 October 1986; English translation)
Briefing book for US Secretary Shultz
(9-12 October 1986; English facsimile)
  • Records from the US-Soviet Reykjavik Summit
First meeting between Reagan and Gorbachev
Translated from Russian transcript. See US memo here.
Second meeting
See US memo here.
(11 October 1986)
Missile negotiations between US and Soviet military officials
(11-12 October 1986; English transcription and translation)
Third meeting
See US memo here.
Final meeting
See US memo here.
(12 October 1986; English translations and facsimiles)
  • The Aftermath of the US-Soviet Reykjavik Summit
Lessons of Reykjavik, State Department Document
(12 October 1986; English facsimile)
Gorbachev's impressions of the Reykjavik Summit
From Anatoly Chernyaev's notes.
(12 October 1986; English translation)
US State Department summary of Reykjavik Summit
(14 October 1986; English facsimile)
Gorbachev sums up Reykjavik in Politburo session
(14 October 1986; English translation)
Politburo session discussing expelled Soviet diplomats
(22 October 1986; English translation)
Politburo session discussing new SDI stance
(30 October 1986; English translation)
Memo for Reagan Post-Reykjavik
Reagan grants permission to be briefed on objections not fitting in with Reagan's expressed objective to eliminate all offensive nuclear weapons.
(1 November 1986; English facsimile)
National Security Decision Directive Number 250
Signed by Ronald Reagan, this document outlines what would need to be done to eliminate all offensive nuclear weapons.
(3 November 1986; English facsimile)
Politburo discusses Shevardnadze-Shultz talks in Vienna
Shultz did not wish to discuss ABM treaty terms in Vienna.
Gorbachev: "we have not yet truly understood what Reykjavik means."
(13 November 1986; English translation)
Gorbachev talks to Chernyaev about Reykjavik
(17 November 1986; English translation)
Gorbachev conference with Politburo and Secretaries of Central Committee
Discussion of Reagan's decision to abandon SALT II treaty.
(1 December 1986; English translation)
(December 1, 1986; Russian facsimile)
Documents about the collapse of the Soviet Union and resulting changes in Eastern Europe and around the globe.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1986-1990; English transcriptions and facsimiles)

Conferences, orders, and resolutions for situation in Chernobyl.
(1986 - 2010, Russian transcription)
Investigation, data, and history of Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.
(English and Russian text)
Documents on the invasion of Afghanistan that began December 1979.
Part of the Wilson Center's Digital Archive of the Cold War.
(1968-2004; translations, transcriptions, and facsimiles)

Conversation took place during Council on Foreign Relations Moscow visit.
(4 February 1987; English transcription)
Analyzes Council on Foreign Relations visit from earlier that month.
(25 February 1987; English translation)
(26 February 1987; English translation)
Records of conversations and related Politburo meetings.
(30 March 1987-23 September 1989; English transcriptions and translations)
See the rejected draft here.
(10 April 1987; English facsimiles)
(14 April 1987; English transcription)
(16 April 1987; English translation)
A draft by Anatoly Chernyaev.
(May 1987; English translation)
(7 May 1987; English facsimile)
In which Reagan declared "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!"
Delivered in West Berlin.
(12 June 1987; English transcription, video, images)
(13 June 1987; English facsimile)
Gorbachev announces that the Soviet Union has agreed to destroy its intermediate-range missiles in Asia.
(9 July 1987; English translation)
  • State Department briefing papers for various negotiations with the Soviet Union
Nuclear and Space talks
Nuclear Risk Reduction Centers
Nuclear Non-Proliferation
ABM Treaty Compliance Issues
ABM Treaty interpretation
(11 August 1987; English facsimiles)
English translation
(28 October 1987; Russian facsimile, English translation)
(10 November 1987; English facsimile)
A memo by Robert M. Gates.
(24 November 1987; English facsimile)
A memo from Abramowitz (head of State Department’s intelligence and research bureau) to Secretary of State Shultz.
Speculates summit agenda "wild cards."
(28 November 1987; English facsimile)
  • Records from the US-Soviet Washington Summit
Memo of first conversation between Gorbachev and Reagan
Memo of second conversation between Gorbachev and Reagan
Record of first conversation between Akhromeev and Nitze at the State Department
(8 December 1987; English facsimiles and transcriptions)
Memo of third conversation between Gorbachev and Reagan
Draft memo of fourth conversation between Gorbachev and Reagan
Record of second conversation between Akhromeev and Nitze at the State Department
Record of conversation between Akhromeev and Carlucci at the Pentagon
(9 December 1987; English facsimiles and transcriptions)
Draft memo of fifth conversation between Gorbachev and Reagan
Memo of sixth conversation between Gorbachev and Reagan
Record of conversation between Akhromeev, William J. Crowe, and Joint Chiefs of Staff members at the Pentagon
(10 December 1987; English facsimiles and transcriptions)
  • The Aftermath of the US-Soviet Washington Summit
Summary of Shultz's briefing about the Washington Summit to the North Atlantic Council
Telegram says Washington summit “has taken us a gigantic step forward” on strategic arms.
(12 December 1987; English facsimile)
Chernyaev's memo to Gorbachev about the Washington Summit
(16 December 1987; English translation)
Gorbachev's presentation of the Washington Summit to Politburo
Gorbachev says that the Washington Summit built US-Soviet understanding more than than Geneva or Reykjavik summits.
(17 December 1987; English translation)

(22 February 1988; English transcription)
Gorbachev briefs Politburo of his conversation with Shultz.
(25 February 1988; English translation)
Gorbachev briefs Politburo of his conversations with U.S. Senators Sam Nunn and Carl Levin and talks between Defense Secretary Frank Carlucci and Defense Minister Dmitry Yazov.
(10 March 1988; English translation)
Gorbachev briefs Politburo of his conversations with Americans.
(21 March 1988; English translation)
(29 April 1988; English transcription)
  • Records from the US-Soviet Moscow Summit
First one-on-one meeting between Reagan and Gorbachev
(29 May 1988; English facsimile)
First Plenary Meeting between Reagan and Gorbachev
(30 May 1988; English facsimile)
Reagan's meeting with monks at the Danilov monestary
(30 May 1988; English facsimile)
Second meeting between Shultz and Shevardnadze
(31 May 1988; English facsimile)
Second meeting between Reagan and Gorbachev
(31 May 1988; English facsimile)
Agreements concluded at Moscow Summit
(31 May 1988; English facsimile)
Full list of attendees at Reagan's reception for refuseniks/dissidents during the Moscow Summit
(1 June 1988; English facsimile)
Moscow Summit Human Rights meeting
Includes discussion of concerning cases of human rights in the USSR.
(1 June 1988; English facsimile)
Gorbachev's reaction to Reagan's visit
From Anatoly Chernyaev's notes from a Politburo session.
(6 June 1988; English translation)
State Department's Brief on the Moscow Summit
Document summarizes the condition of the Soviet Union: "this is a time of great ferment in the Soviet Union, and it showed."
(8 June 1988; English facsimile)
Excerpt from diary of Anatoly Chernyaev
Chernyaev's discussion of the Moscow Summit demonstrates that it was not a high Soviet priority.
(19 June 1988; English translation)
Arbatov's analysis of the Moscow summit for Gorbachev
(June 1988; English translation)
Requirements of the liberties and democratic changes.
(June 5 and 12, 1988; Russian facsimile)
Resolution allowed for citizens to elect representatives to the councils. Markerd a turning point for democracy in Russia.
(28 June - 1 July 1988; Russian transcription)
(18 September 1988; English translation)
Gorbachev meets with his advisers to draft a UN speech. He desires to alleviate Western security fears and declare a new world order, one without an Iron Curtain.
(31 October 1988; English translation)
Chernyaev observes that Gorbachev is "clearly nervous" about the radical nature of his speech.
(3 November 1988; English translation)
Chernyaev suggests that though the military was not involved in UN decision making, Gorbachev present initiatives to co-opt the military as much as possible.
(10 November 1988; English translation)
Analysis after Gorbachev's surprising UN speech.
(November 1988; English facsimile)
(7 December 1988; English facsimile)
(7 December 1988; English transcription)
Document about 1930-1935 repressions in the USSR.
Was classified.
(December 25, 1988; Russian transcription)
Yakovlev's account of conversation.
Matlock assures Yakovlev that the new H.W. Bush administration would continue US policies for the USSR.
(26 December 1988; English translation)
Gorbachev objects to public announcement of numbers being cut so that the public will not learn the size of Soviet military expenditures.
(27-28 December 1988; English translation)
Collected primary documents from the end of the Cold War.
(1980s; English)
Order to stop blocking foreign radio waves in Lithuania.
(January 23, 1989; Russian facsimile)
(April 1989; English facsimile)
Agreements and protocol between the Federal Ministry of the Interior of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and the State Security Committee of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
(30-31 August 1989; Russian and Czech facsimiles)
(23 September 1989-14 November 1989; Russian transcriptions)
Recommends that Reagan encourage US trade with Soviet firms.
(14 November 1989; English facsimile)
(17 November 1989; English facsimile)
1989 US Assessment of the Soviet Union for the next two years.
(18 November 1989; English facsimile)
Assessment of Gorbachev's priorities at Malta.
(29 November 1989; English facsimile)
Documentation of communications between Helmut Kohl, George H. W. Bush and Mikhail Gorbachev leading to German unification plans.
(November-December 1989; transcripts, memoranda, telegrams and phone records)
Excerpts from George H.W. Bush's briefing book for US-Soviet Malta summit with Gorbachev.
(2-3 December 1989; English facsimile)
(2-3 December 1989; English translation)
(3 December 1989; English translation)
(5 December 1989; English translation)
Suggests rehabilitating the repressed of the 1930s-50s.
(December 11, 1989; Russian transcription)
(2 January 1990; English translation)
(14 March 1990; Russian facsimile and transcription)
(April 24, 1990; Russian transcription)
(11 May 1990-15 June 1990; English facsimiles, translations, and transcriptions)
Was to be signed on 20 August 1991 in an effort of the Emergency Committee to preserve the USSR.
(15 August 1991; Russian transcription)
Outlines Emergency Committee's plans for reform.
(18 August 1991; Russian facsimile and transcription)
(19-21 August 1991; English translations and transcriptions)
Journal from witness of the putsch in August 1991.
(August 19, 1991; Russian transcription)
News reports of Moscow situation from August 1991.
(August 19 - 21, 1991; text in Russian).
Accounts of unsuccessful Soviet coup.
(August 1991; transcriptions)
(24 September 1991-17 December 1991; Russian facsimiles and transcriptions)
Plan between Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine to create a Commonwealth of Independent States upon the collapse of the USSR.
(8 December 1991; Russian facsimile and transcription)
Treaty officially recognizes collapse of the USSR and an organization of a new Union of the independent countries of Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus.
(December 10, 1991; Russian transcription)

EuroDocs > History of Russia: Primary Documents > Russian Revolution, Civil War and USSR 1917-1991

EuroDocs Creator: Richard Hacken, European Studies Bibliographer,
Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, USA.
Feel free to get in touch: Hacken @
With special thanks to Natalya Georgiyeva and Marren Haneberg for their help with this webpage.