My family is originally from the Odessa, Russia area and my whole life I've been fed the following story about my great grandfather:
My great grandfather, a man named Isaac Wasserman, who apparently was Russian Orthodox Jewish, was a socialist and was a ranking member to a political reform party that was a precursor to the Bolshevik Party. So, he was not a Bolshevik, but according to my family, this was a party similar to the Bolsheviks that preceded them and failed miserably to overthrow the czar/monarchy.
Apparently my great grandfather was some form of leader in this party, and when their coupe failed sometime in the early 20th century (1905-ish is the year I've been told a few times), he was sentenced to some Siberian gulag...from which he escaped, returned to Odessa, grabbed his wife (my great grandmother) and the two of them fled to America. They changed their name when they came to America so as to sever ties with their Russian roots, and thats how I got my surname. That's the story I've been fed for the last 30 years at least.
I'm interested in trying to vet out this story's accuracy and figured I'd start here trying to figure out what this "Bolshevik precursor" party might have been. Anybody have any idea what party this might have been?