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Lenin signed and annotated this telegram in 1921, in the midst of a widespread famine, in order to prepare for the visit of an English trade delegation. This telegram, thought to be lost, was discovered by Russian composer Yuriy Limanov among his father's papers.
Autograph note signed: "Lenin" in blue pencil, 1 page, 9½x6¾. Moscow, Soviet Union, July 13, 1921. Routed at top in his hand: "To Krasin", written by Lenin in lower margin of a telegram from London. In Russian, fully translated: "Keep your eyes open. Check it and make sure that everything is really done." Telegram from Klyshko in London to Chicherin in Moscow, with copies to Lenin and [A. N.] Lezhava, also in Russian, fully translated: "There has been a final decision for the English Delegation to depart Sunday July 17. The passports had been submitted, visas issued. Will arrive Riga by Thursday, July 21. They are requesting to have a passenger train for fifteen people, two goods wagons, one flat wagon for an automobile ready by that day. According to promise given to Peters in Moscow he hopes the house will be ready by the arrival, reminds about promised disinfection, telephones installed, small repairs." [Under linings are by Lenin himself in red pencil; Lenin has also numbered (1-5) the underlined tasks to be accomplished.] Accompanied by an undated facsimile translation of an interview with Russian playwright Yuriy Limanov, who had discovered this long-lost telegram among his father's papers and researched it extensively. The fax also includes a statement by Victor Kuznetsoff, member of the American Translators Association, who translated both the telegram with Lenin's note and the Limanov interview from Russian into English. VLADIMIR ILYICH LENIN (born V. I. Ulyanov, 1870-1924), was an organizer of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and founder of the Soviet state. A theorist as well as a practical organizer, Lenin's writings were incorporated into the body of thought generally known as Marxism-Leninsim. Returning from exile in 1917, Lenin mobilized opposition to the government of Alexander Kerensky, which had already deposed Czar Nicholas II but continued participation in World War I. In a second (November Revolution), Lenin and his party seized power, signed a separate peace with Germany, and consolidated power after a prolonged civil war (1918-1922). Head of the Soviet Government as Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars, Lenin moved to Moscow, which became the capital of the Soviet State, to work out a plan for the nation's socialist government. At the Third All-Russia Congress of Soviets in January 1918, the Constitution (Fundamental Law) of the RSFSR (Russian Socialist Federative Soviet Republic) was adopted. This constitution established the Russian Soviet Republic "on the principle of a free union of free nations, as a federation of Soviet national republics." This Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. Lenin, who never fully recovered from a 1918 assassination attempt, died in 1924. L.B. KRASIN (1870-1926), to whom Lenin addressed his note on this telegram, was Foreign Trade Commissar. A recent biography by Timothy O'Connor (1993) called Krasin "the engineer of revolution," a reputation supported by Lenin's reliance on Krasin to accomplish the tasks set forth in this telegram. He was in formal charge of the trade negotiations with the British. It was Krasin who proposed embalming Lenin's body and putting it on display in Red Square. GEORGY CHICHERIN (1872-1936) was Peoples' Commissar of Foreign Affairs (1918-1930). Of aristocratic background and a former official of the Imperial Russian foreign ministry, Chicherin secretly funded revolutionaries and had to flee Russia after the unsuccessful revolution of 1905. Chicherin helped negotiate the Brest Litovsk treaty which ended Russian participation in World War I. During the 1920s Chicherin, an effective negotiator, helped end Soviet Russia's diplomatic isolation. A severe drought struck Russia in 1921, causing widespread crop failures and famine. In May of that year, Lenin telegrammed N. K. KLYSHKO (1880-1937), a Bolshevik who had lived in exile in England before the revolution, was translator and personal secretary to Krasin during trade negotiations to expedite grain purchases from Western countries. G. A. Solomon argues that Klyshko was installed by the Cheka (predecessor of the NKVD and KGB) and was actually in charge of the trade negotiations. A. N. LEZHAVA (1870-1937) was deputy commissar of external trade for the Russian Federation (1920-1922). Klyshko and Lezhava were both executed in 1937, during the Stalin's Purge Trials. For Lenin, trade with Western countries had a political as well as an economic dimension, at a time when those nations had not officially recognized the new Soviet government. Consequently, Lenin had strong incentives to urge Krasin to expedite the arrival of this English trade delegation. Lightly soiled. Horizontal and vertical folds. Frayed at lower edge, not affecting signature. Three pinhead-sized holes in upper margin. Overall, fine condition.

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Born: April 22, 1870 in Simbirsk, Russian Empire (now Ulyanovsk, Russia)
Died: January 21, 1924 in Gorki, Moscow Governorate, Russian SFSR, USSR (now Gorki Leninskiye, Moscow Oblast, Russia)

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