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Russian Civil War Refugees in Turkey

Biulleten' vremennogo glavnogo komiteta [Bulletin of the interim committee ], nos. 1-2 (all published). June-July 1921.

Constantinople (Istanbul), 1921. Quartos (32 × 20 cm). Original sewn pamphlets with cloth spine strip; mimeographed or hectographed wrappers; mimeographed text to rectos; 56 and 152 leaves. Numerous charts, diagrams (affixed to leaves), and additional printed ephemera bound with the text. Worn; front wrapper and first page of one issue detached; light soil and staining to the second issue; still good or better.

Rare two-volume report on the activities of the All-Russian Zemstvo Union, an organization originally founded in 1914 to care for the sick and wounded of World War I. While it ceased operation following the Tsar's abdication in 1917, an interim committee was established in Krasnodar and Feodosia, Crimea, while the White Army held their position there. After the evacuation of the White forces and their families to Constantinople and nearby regions, it was re-established there in 1919 under A. S. Khripunov and sought to provide aid to Russian refugees in today's Turkey, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, Cyprus, Egypt, and beyond. It appears to have been dissolved in 1924, after which many of its leaders joined the Zemstvos and Towns Relief Committee (Zemgor), another humanitarian organization aiding Russian refugees during and after the Russian Civil War (1918–1922), and based primarily in Paris. Functioning as a kind of de facto “ministry of human affairs” in emigration, the Zemgor set up shelters, canteens, schools, orphanages, legal aid, and employment offices for the refugees. The present bulletins lament the lack of funds and the demoralizing news coming from Russia, but nevertheless report on a remarkable breadth of activities, such as a rudimentary postal service, a newspaper distribution network, medical (especially tuberculosis) relief, legal consultations, workshops such as tailors' shops, and other attempts to provide work for the refugees. They also contain valuable descriptions of the various camps in the region, including Gallipoli, Lemnos, Bernadotte, and Chataldzha. The second volume adds further details, such as information about the network of cafeterias and the lending library of the Zemstvo Union. Illustrated with numerous lithographed diagrams and additional ephemera, such as printed financial accounts of the Union and a French-language informational bulletin on the situation of the Russian refugees. With a binder's ticket indicating that the volumes were bound at the book-binding workshop of the Zemstvo Union. Not in Kudriavtsev. Not in Savine. As of February 2020, KVK and OCLC only show the copies at Leeds (in the Paris Zemgor Archive).

Book ID: P5022

Price: $1,250.00