38 votes
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How did the Bolsheviks fund their government?

This is based on an Estonian radio show, 'Müstiline Venemaa' ('Mystical Russia') by historian David Vseviov, chapters 'The Financing of Bolshevik Activities', which described the pre-1917 financing, ...
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19 votes
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Why didn't Lenin improve life in Russian villiages before his death?

Lenin, and all the Bolsheviks, believed that the USSR needed to industrialise very rapidly, so that it could defend itself effectively against foreign attacks. The Russian Empire had performed poorly ...
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  • 12.8k
18 votes

Did Lenin order the execution of the Romanovs?

tl;dr Nobody knows. If you haven't found anything conclusive, you are not alone: there's no agreement among the historians, either. Some say Lenin was not at all responsible, that the execution was ...
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  • 455
12 votes

How did the Bolsheviks gain power outside Petrograd & Moscow following the 1917 October Revolution?

In the answer, I limit myself to two months, November-December of 1917. What you have to realize is that the Bolshevik Revolution replaced one government of dubious legitimacy with another one. To ...
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  • 6,010
11 votes

Help with identifying my great-grandfather's pre-WWI Cossack uniform

Cossack was not just a regiment one can get drafted into, it was something hereditary and traditional. The cossacks lived in specific areas (Don, Kuban river basins, Siberia, etc), had their own ...
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  • 111
11 votes
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How many troops would the White Armies have had at their peak during the Russian Civil War?

The White Army was never a unified force but rather a number of armies of varying sizes which rarely co-ordinated their efforts. David Bullock, in The Russian Civil War 1918-22 states Overall, the ...
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10 votes
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Was there a precursor to the Bolshevik Party?

It is very probable that your great grandfather was a member of Bund. Bund was a Jewish socialist party. They split from the rest of social democrats in 1903. After the revolution (November 1917) they ...
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10 votes
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What political party did Stalin belong to?

Joseph Stalin was, for most of his life, a member of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (Bolshevik faction) (RSDLP(b)) and its precursor (RSDLP) and inheritor (Communist Party of the Soviet ...
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9 votes
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What did Mirsky mean by this quote (Russian Revolution 1905)?

Mirsky was saying that after the defeat by Japan in 1905 (and the resulting uprising), that Russia had to choose between "reform" and "anarchy." Nicholas had blocked, and the nobles had failed to ...
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  • 103k
8 votes

Why was Tsesarevich Alexei's hemophilia a state secret?

This was kept a secret for the same reason that FDR "was careful never to be seen in [a wheelchair] in public. Great care was also taken to prevent his being portrayed by the press in a way which ...
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  • 25.5k
8 votes
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Was Senegal involved in the 1918 Russian Revolution?

In this article is a picture of French colonial troops in Ukraine: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_Russia_intervention It also mentions: “By 14 April there were only 5,000 allied soldiers in ...
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  • 106
7 votes

Help with identifying my great-grandfather's pre-WWI Cossack uniform

They are wearing the double breasted 1907 tunic which was issued to the regular army except the guards which had a more elaborate version. He wears the Black papaha which was preferred by Cossacks ...
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  • 190
7 votes

How did the Czech Legion get home?

The USS Grant was just one of the vessels took 2-3 times the Czech Legion soldiers home. They passed several important ports including Shanghai, Hong Kong and Colombo. Mostly were shipping on the ...
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7 votes
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How did the Czech Legion get home?

Indeed, as @TomAu has said, the evacuation of the Czechs (and Slovaks!) was handled by the US government, which also presumably paid for it. I found a Romanian article about Victor Cădere, a ...
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7 votes

How many Old Bolsheviks outlived Stalin?

For "top of the pile", Wiki claims that 58% of the 1917 Party Central Committee was eliminated by 1938. 63% of the first Bolshevik government was executed by that time. Out of 267 1917-1934 Central ...
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  • 25.5k
7 votes

How did the Bolsheviks fund their government?

I personally doubt this report's accuracy. I've seen numerous reports, news articles of the time 1918-20 in the American/British press that this just seems another one far from reality (like those in ...
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7 votes
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Why was Lenin's brother executed, when he himself was only banished?

First of all, Alexander Ulyanov was a member of a terrorist organization (the terrorist faction of "People’s Will"), planning an assassination of Russian tzar, Alexander III, on the 6th year ...
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  • 6,010
6 votes

What did Mirsky mean by this quote (Russian Revolution 1905)?

It may be wrong translation. In the original it's "Будем строить тюрьмы", an incomplete colloquial phrase which may, depending on intonation, be interpreted both as 1st person plural imperative (Let'...
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  • 617
6 votes
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Did Russia and Lenin benefit from the Treaty of Versailles?

They benefited indirectly. First, according to the treaty Germany had to evacuate their troops in Ukraine, (and everywhere else on the territory of the former Russian empire) which made it possible ...
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  • 37.3k
5 votes

Political opposition groups in the Russian revolution?

Yes, you are almost completely off track:-) The situation was a) much more complicated, and b) quickly changing with time during 1917-1918. Bolsheviks and Mensheviks were the split parts of the ...
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  • 37.3k
5 votes

Help with identifying my great-grandfather's pre-WWI Cossack uniform

May be your great grandfather was mobilised to the army when the WW1 was started. The Russian army had about 1,3 million soldiers and after mobilization it was up to 5 million soldiers. Both brothers ...
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5 votes

When did the socialist movement start becoming noteworthy in Russian history?

According to this Wikipedia page on the Revolution of 1905 (Bloody Sunday), socialism became important politically in Russia shortly after the accession of Tsar Alexander II in the 1860's and 1870's. ...
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  • 5,949
5 votes
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Statistics on pre-revolutionary Russian education

There is a dedicated article in the Russian segment of Wikipedia and its part is dedicated almost exactly to the period you are (or were at the time the question was asked) interested in Education in ...
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5 votes

"Peace, land, and bread!" Or not?

Well, these words most probably originate in Lenin's "Letters from afar" (March 1917). However, (1) Lenin wrote these words many(!) times in different combinations as the parts of larger sentences; (2)...
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  • 4,242
5 votes

Did Lenin order the execution of the Romanovs?

From Robert Messie "Nicholas and Alexandra: The Classic Account of the Fall of the Romanov Dynasty." (If you do not know, Ilyich in this context means Lenin.) The link between the party ...
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  • 6,010
5 votes
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Who were the victims of the 1907 Tiflis bank robbery?

Short answer From the available evidence, it would appear that maybe as many as half of the (around 40) fatalities were passersby. This can be tentatively deduced from the likely number of non-...
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5 votes

Was it ever possible to see students with burka/paranji having education at the schools and universities of the Uzbek Soviet Republic?

That varied. Over time and space – and sadly for description – not ever uniformly. Trying such a broad stroke nevertheless: Until the 1940s it went up and down at the same time and this differed ...
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  • 73.7k
5 votes
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Was the Kerensky Offensive doomed from the start?

Most likely, yes Several things to consider: WW1 was mostly infantry war, and infantry suffered enormous casualties. Mutinies and dissatisfaction were common thing even in the West (French mutinies ...
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  • 10.9k
4 votes
Accepted

What was the structure of the Russian army following reforms in 1917?

The military ranks were abolished. This does not mean command hierarchy was abolished. Soldiers were renamed to "fighters", officers to "commanders". A general became "comandarm" or "combrig" ...
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