The Russian Revolution 1905-1924

  • Bloody Sunday

    Bloody Sunday
    Tsarist forces fire on the workers peacefully protesting in the streets of St. Petersburg which caused general strikes, the uprising of some of Russia's 90+ million peasants and demands for political reform.
  • Government Closure of Universities

    Tsar Nicholas II orders the closure of universities due to fear of them being breeding grounds for revolutionary ideas.
  • Bolsheviks meet in London

    The Bolshevik Third Party Congress begins in London. A proposal for re-unification with the Mensheviks is rejected.
  • Bulygin Constitution

    The Bulygin Constitution is revealed. This allows for an elected Duma to be formed as an advisory council to the Tsar.
  • End of the Russo-Japanese War

    End of the Russo-Japanese War
    A conflict between Russia and Japan over Manchuria and the Korean Peninsula is resolved with the finalisation of the Treaty of Portsmouth; giving full control of the Korean Peninsula to the Japanese. The Russian forces were defeated numerous times and the cost of the war effort further contributed to the economic slump in Russia.
  • Zemstvo Delegates Rjection

    A cogress of Zemstvo Delegates from Moscow oppose Nicholas' proposal for a consultative Duma and demand for an elected Duma.
  • Formation of the Soviet of Soldiers’ and Workers’ Deputies

    The Soviet of Soldiers’ and Workers’ Deputies is formed in St. Petersburg. The council is dominated by the Mensheviks with Leon Trotsky as Vice-Chairman.
  • October Manifesto

    Tsar Nicholas signs the October Manifesto which introduces liberal reform and an elected Duma.
  • Lenin Returns

    Vladamir Lenin returns to St Petersburg after years of exile.
  • Censorship Relaxation

    Censorship laws and regulations are relaxed, allowing a massive wave anti-tsarist literature and propaganda to be published.
  • Alexander Kerensky Arrested

    Alexander Kerensky; a young member of the SR is arrested and jailed for possession of anti-Tsarist literature.
  • Propaganda Punishments

    Harsh new punishments for anti-tsarist propaganda and advertising aome 3 months after censoship laws were relaxed.
  • Fundamental Laws

    Tsar Nicholas II releases a constitution that reaffirms his total power over Russia and revokes the promises made in the October Manifesto.
  • Meeting of the First Duma

    The First Duma meets in St Petersburg and Socialist parties such as the Mensheviks and Bolsheviks boycott the event. 16 days later the liberal dominated Duma wants the government to establish democratic reforms however Nicholas' Prime Minister Goremykin denies the Duma, claiming they have no authority to produce these demands.
  • Piotr Stolypin as Prime Minister

    Goremykin is replaced by Stolypin.
  • First Duma Dissolved

    First Duma is dissolved by the Tsar after weeks of criticism of the government.
  • Exile of Leon Trotsky

    Leon Trotsky along with his Soviet comrades in St Petersburg are sent to Siberia in exile.
  • Rasputin

    Rasputin visits the Romanov family for the first time.
  • Stolypin's Land Reform

    Communal peasant land may now be purchased by private buyers in an effort to make Russia's peasant wealthier.
  • Second Duma

    The Second Duma opens and many of its members were socialist representatives such as Social Revolutionaries, Mensheviks and 18 Bolsheviks.
  • Second Duma is Dissolved

    Tsar Nicholas II dissolves the second Duma after weeks of criticism and provoking speeches. Two days earlier left-wing politicians and activists in St Petersburg by tsarist police.
  • Electoral Laws altered by Stolypin

    Piotr Stolypin alters the Electoral Laws to reduce the representation of peasants, workers and national minorities.
  • Elections for the Third Duma

    Elections for the Third Duma.
  • Opening of the Third Duma

    The Third Duma opens and the majority of the seats is occupied by land-owners and conservatives. Less than 100 seats were occupied by socialists and liberals.
  • Lenin Flees Russia

    Lenin Flees Russia and returns to exile in Switzerland.
  • University Strikes

    Waves of unrest and university strikes occur after the government attempts to ban student protests.
  • Rasputin is Banished

    Rasputin is briefly banished by the Tsar after reports of Rasputin's constant drinking of cheap wine and womanising,
  • Stolypin is Assassinated

    Piotr Stolypin is shot at the theatre and dies four days later. He is replaced by Vladimir Kokovstoff on the 6th of September.
  • Lena River Strikes and Massacre

    Starting on the 1st of March 1912, strikes took place at the Lena River goldfields in Siberia over high prices and low quality products at the company canteens. On the 9th, negotiations between the workers and the company break down. One month later on the 4th of April; strike leaders are arrested by tsarist troops and over 200 workers are gunned down when they march for their leaders' freedom.
  • Trotsky Attempts to Reconcile the Mensheviks and Bolsheviks

    Trotsky gathers Social Decromats in Vienna in an attempt to reconcile the Mensheviks and Bolsheviks.
  • Opening of the Fourth Duma

    Fourth Duma opens.
  • Assassination of Franz Ferdinand

    Austria's Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife are assassinated by Siberian nationalists in Sarajevo.
  • Germany Declares War on Russia

    Germany brings Russia into WW1 by declaring war. Patriotism weakens support for socialist groups. Russia loses battles such as The Battle of Tannenburg and The Battle of the Masurian Lakes.
  • Petrograd

    St Petersburg is renamed Petrograd.
  • Tsar Nicholas II Postpones the Duma

    Tsar Nicholas II orders the postpoing of the Duma due to hostilities from an alliance formed on the 9th of August between liberal-conservative parties like the Kadets and the Octobrists who demanded political reforms.
  • Tsar Nicholas II takes Control of the Military

    The Tsar takes control of the Russian Military and departs Petrograd.
  • Duma Reconvenes

    Duma reconvenes in Petrograd.
  • Duma Temporary Dissolved

    Nicholas II temporary dissolves the Duma on advice from the Tsarina and Rasputin.
  • Duma Calls for Overhaul

    The Duma calls for an overhaul of the Tsarist Government after the Duma is reconvened.
  • Tsar has no Military Support

    The Tsar's advisors tell Nicholas that he would no longer be supported by the military if a revolution started.
  • Rasputin's Murder

    Rasputin is assassinated by three conspirators who feared that he had too much influence on the royal family.
  • Bloody Sunday Commemoration Strike

    Over 140,000 Russian workers strike on the 12th anniversary of Bloody Sunday to honour those who died.
  • Duma criticises Government

    With over 100,000 workers still striking the Duma criticises the government for its failure to respond to food shortages.
  • February Revolution and Food Rationing

    The Tsarist Government announces food rationing causing panic and panic buying in Russia's cities where there are already food shortages.
  • Attempts to Dissolve Duma

    The Tsar orders the permanent dissolution of the Duma but the order is ignored.
  • Soviet Reformation

    Mensheviks and striking workers reform the Petrograd Soviet.
  • Soviets and Duma Conspire

    Tsar attempts to return to Petrograd but cannot due to train difficulties. Soviets and the Duma meet to plan together.
  • Abdication

    The Duma demands the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II. The Tsar abdicates in favour of his brother. The next day the Tsar's brother refuses unless he is elected by the people.
  • Liberal Principles

    The Provisional Government issues a set of liberal principles by which it intends to govern. This includes improvements to civil rights and freedoms, amnesties for political prisoners and the organisation of elections for a Constituent Assembly.
  • Lenin Returns

    Lenin returns to Russia with help from the German government. He delivers his April Thesis at Finland Station.
  • Russian Civil War

    A Czech Legion numbering 30,000 joins counter-revolutionaries and progress through Russia in an effort to remove the Soviet Government.
  • July Days Uprising

    Workers and soldiers try to revolt and demand that either the Bolsheviks or Soviets take power. Neither do and the rebellion is crushed.
  • Kerensky becomes Prime Minister

    The Provisional Government has issues after the uprising. Kerensky becomes Prime Minister with a cabinet of socialists.
  • Kornilov Affair

    General Kornilov declares his intention to march on Petrograd and free the country from radical socialists. This plan stalls on the 30th of August.
  • Trotsky becomes Chairman

    Trotsky becomes Chairman of the Petrograd Soviet as the Bolsheviks hold the voting majority.
  • October Revolution

    The October Revolution beings as the Bolshevik Central Committee warns of an 'armed uprising' being inevitable. The Petrograd Soviet establishes the Military Revolutionary Committee.
  • Bolsheviks Seize Power

    Lenin announces that the Bolsheviks have taken power and calls for the Soviets to come to government, The Mensheviks and Social Revolutionaries walk out of the Soviet Congress.
  • Decree on Land and Peace

    Lenin issues the Decree on Land which removes private ownership of land. The Decree of Peace urges immediate peace and ceasefire. On the same day the ministers of the Provisional Government are arrested and Kerensky flees Petrograd.
  • Red Guard

    The Red Guard achieves control of Moscow.
  • Tsarist Titles Abolished

    Government announces that all Tsarist title, privileges and ranks are abolished.
  • Constituent Assembly Elections

    Elections for the Constituent Assembly start. Over 44 million people vote.
  • December Changes

    December is a month of government bodies like the Vesenkha which is the Supreme Soviet of the National Economy and reforms to private property ownership, marriage and divorce legislation and the legal status of women.
  • Russia quits WW1 and the Russian Communist Party is Born.

    Trotsky signs the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk thus ending Russia’s involvement in World War I and surrendering large amounts of land, people and natural resources to the Germans. In the same month the Bolsheviks change their name to The Russian Communist Party.
  • Foreign Interference and General Kornilov

    In April 1918, British and French troops land in Russia to aid the White Army in the Russian Civil War. The Tsarist General Kornilov is killed by an artillery shell.
  • Romanov Family Killed

    The Romanov Family is executed by the Bolsheviks whilst under house arrest.
  • Lenin is Seriously Wounded

    Lenin is left seriously wounded after the Socialist-Revolutionaries make an assassination attempt.
  • White Army has Control of Siberia

    The White commander Kolchak establishes control of Siberia.
  • Grain Requisitioning

    Compulsary Grain Requisitioning is announced meaning that you must give up a portion of your grain crop to the Government.
  • Media Censorship Begins

    The Mensehvik newspaper is closed down by the Soviet Government for its strong criticisms of the Government.
  • Hungary and Cominterm

    In March of 1919, a worker's soviet republic is established in Hungary but is disbanded as of August 1919. The third Communist International or Comintern is held in Moscow where discussions of world revolution occurs.
  • Petrograd is Nearly Taken

    The White general Yudenich launches an assault on Petrograd and nearly succeeds before Red Army reinforcements push them back in November.
  • Commander Kolchak Captured and US Peace Offering

    In March 1920, Commander Kolchak of the White Army is captured and executed. The Bolshevik Government offers peace to the US but is rejected.
  • Russian Civil War Nearly Concluded

    The majority of the fighting in the Civil War is at its conclusion, though small localised battles and peasant rebellions still continue.
  • New Economic Policy and Trade Blockades Lifted

    During March 1921, he tenth Party Congress of the Communist Party. Lenin reveals the New Economic Policy and orders the commencing of all factions in the party. Britain signs a bilateral trading agreement with Russia; other nations follow.
  • Plea for Famine Aid

    The writer Maxim Gorky makes a worldwide plea for famine aid, revealing millions of Russian lives may be in danger.
  • Famine Aid

    Millions of tons of grain are sent to Russia by an American famine relief organisation.
  • Josef Stalin gets Promoted and Lenin gets an Operation

    Stalin is promoted to General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and Lenin has an operation to remove a bullet lodged in his neck.
  • Lenin's First Stroke

    Lenin suffers his first stroke.
  • The USSR and Lenin's Political Testament

    Lenin announces the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, a federation of all soviet states. Lenin releases his 'Political Testament' which discusses the future of the Soviet Union.
  • Deterioration between Lenin and Stalin

    Lenin and Stalin's relationship deteriorates after Stalin insults Lenin's wife.
  • Lenin Suffers from Paralysis

    Lenin experiences a third stroke which results in paralysis and leaves him in a state where he can barely speak.
  • Famine Relief Stops being Sent to Russia

    Famine Relief from the US stops being sent to Russia after it is revealed that the Soviet Government is exporting the grain.
  • Criticism within the Bolshevik Party

    46 leading Bolsheviks criticise the growing lack of democracy in the Communist Party of the Soviet Union which Stalin is the General Secretary of.
  • Lenin Dies

    Lenin passes away after his fourth severe stroke. His body is embalmed and preserved in a museum in Red Square. The city of Petrograd is renamed Leningrad to honour the father of the Soviet Union.
  • USSR is Recognised

    The USSR is recognised by the British Empire; other countries follow.