Handbook about Chekists of Great Terror now available on Internet

posted 28 Nov 2016, 05:15 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 28 Nov 2016, 05:16 ]
23 November 2016

Source: HRO.org

On 23 November 2016 International Memorial Society made available on the Internet a handbook ‘The cadres of the state security services of the USSR 1935-1939’.

The handbook gives brief details of 39,950 members of the NKVD who were appointed to a particular rank or post in the security organs, from its introduction in 1935 until the beginning of 1941. The period from the autumn of 1935 to the middle of 1939 receives special attention – almost all who were awarded such a rank during this time appear in the handbook.

A preliminary version of the handbook came out as a CD in May 2016. Amendments and additions to approximately 4,500 entries have been made to the Internet version.

The main source for the information in the handbook is the staff records of the USSR NKVD.

The handbook contains the number and date for the orders making the appointment to the post in question and date of leaving the NKVD, information on post occupied at the time of leaving, and also information on the receipt of any awards, including that of ‘Honoured employee of the VChK-GPU’. Further information on biographical details comes from other sources, in particular records of those reported dead or missing in action during the Great Patriotic War, and also of subsequent repressions.

The handbook will be useful to those interested in Soviet history. For example, the handbook makes it possible to identify very many of the state security personnel, active during the Great Terror, of whom until now only a surname has been known (without first name or patronymic) from their signatures in cases under investigation or from mentions in the memoir literature.

The appearance of the handbook is a significant step towards a deeper and more accurate understanding of the tragic history of our country in the thirties of the twentieth century.

Ya. Z. Rachinsky, aided by O. A. Gorplanov, N. V. Petrov and A.B. Roginsky, prepared the handbook for publication. S. Z. Rachinsky is responsible for the programming.

For more information about the project, see: http://nkvd.memo.ru/index.php/НКВД:Предисловие

Translated by Mary McAuley