Russian Timeline Project

  • Revolution of 1905

    Revolution of 1905
    The photo below demonstrates masses of protesting Russian workers dying in the snow as the Tsar's police fires on them. This photo perfectly demonstrates the 1905 revolution since it conveys the ruthlessness of the Russian police firing on peaceful protesters. Further, this brutality also explains the Russian people's disillusionment with tsar Nicholas II since their view of him as benevolent decayed drastically. The photo demonstrates said brutality. The end-date is 16 June, 1907.
  • October Manifesto

    October Manifesto
    The photo below is a political cartoon showing Sergei Witte "forcing" Tsar Nicholas II to sign the October Manifesto - a list of liberal concessions meant to lessen the social unrest of the 1905 Revolution. This photo demonstrates the physical circumstances under which Nicholas signed the manifesto, showing that it was not out of benevolence but out of necessity. Further, the reluctance to sign the manifesto (as shown in the photo) reveals that Nicholas never truly intended to honor it.
  • Beginning of World War 1

    Beginning of World War 1
    This photo was chosen because of the news clipping with the header, "AUSTRIA HAS CHOSEN WAR". This message is written by The Washington Times, a notable American newspaper. The way the heading states that "Austria" was the one who chose war is likely used to show how Austria-Hungary was in the wrong because it implies that they could have taken a peaceful route, but decided against it.
  • Tsar Nicholas II Takes Sole Control of Military Operations

    Tsar Nicholas II Takes Sole Control of Military Operations
    This picture was chosen because it lacks many military emblems on his uniform. This is significant because he was dissuaded from taking such a position because he wasn’t trusted to be competent enough to lead all Russia’s armies.
  • Brusilov Offensive

    Brusilov Offensive
    The most common interpretation of the Brusilov Offensive leads one to believe that it was a success for the Allies, and while not entirely false, it isn't entirely true. This picture shows the living conditions for the poorly organized, Nicolas II lead, Military. What isn’t shown, but insinuated, is the immense number of men lots to the battles during the offensive as well. Despite the territorial gains, this may have lost the war for Russia.
  • Assassination of Rasputin

    Assassination of Rasputin
    The photo chosen is a cartoon drawn by artist, Alfred Kubin, in 1925. I chose this photo because not only was it made around the time of the assassination, but it shows the public’s interpretation of Rasputin's assassination. I wanted a photo that depicted the act and held significance in terms of how people at the time understood the act. These aspects give insight into the mindset of everyone at the time - specifically since Kubin was an Austrian artist, this was a foreign view.
  • International Women's Day March on Petrograd

    International Women's Day March on Petrograd
    The photo below shows women marching on Petrograd in 1917, with the sign reading "without women's participation, suffrage is not universal." This photo demonstrates the aims of the women's march on Petrograd - increase suffrage/representation in the tsar's government along with improved economic circumstances. Under the societal stresses of WW1, this photo displays the purpose of the march - to improve Russian society for women. This aim was expanded as other groups took to the streets.
  • Provisional Government Formed

    Provisional Government Formed
    This picture was chosen initially because it is the symbol of the Provisional government of Russia. More importantly however, it has significant symbolism in the dual headed bird. One head is very assertive and dominant (Left) while the right head has a strained expression. This is both ironic and telling of the Bolshevik uprising. The Bolsheviks (a very left leaning party) were ultimately in control of the government, while the right leaning parties were removed from Russian politics.
  • Nicholas II Abdicates

    Nicholas II Abdicates
    This photo was chosen because of the way that the article portrays Nicholas II. The header fails to mention his name, just stating, "THE TSAR OF RUSSIA ABDICATES", which could have possibly been done because of how the American public wasn't familiar with his name, so "The Tsar of Russia" is much easier to understand. It also contains pictures of him and the White Palace, which gives Americans an idea of who he was and what he left behind by abdicating.
  • Return of Lenin from Exile

    Return of Lenin from Exile
    This photo was chosen because of the fact that it is a dramatization of Lenin's return. I think it exemplifies the Russian public's response to Lenin, or it shows their strong positive response.
  • April Theses Published

    April Theses Published
    The photo below shows Lenin speaking to a large crowd of workers and peasants in April 1917 Petrograd. In this photo, Lenin touts his April theses which include slogans such as "peace, bread, and land" and "all power to the Soviets." Lenin constantly pushed these slogans - which were a big part of his April Theses - at public rallies such as the one pictured below. Thus, the photo shows a significant method Lenin used to propagate the ideas in his April Theses.
  • First All-Russian Congress of Soviets Meets

    First All-Russian Congress of Soviets Meets
    This photo was chosen because it portrays the First All-Russian Congress of Soviets meeting as a large event. However, it specifically draws a similarity to the signing of The Declaration of Independence, which contains a large amount of people in a room all focused on a piece of paper. This indicates the significance of this meeting because of how significant the signing of the Declaration of Independence was.
  • July Days

    July Days
    This photo was chosen because it not only displays the Russian Public's intent with the protest, (i.e., the left banner saying "Peace to the Whole World — All Power to the People — All Land to the People”) but it captures a significant moment of the July Days.
  • Kornilov Affair

    Kornilov Affair
    The photo below implies that Kerensky's/the Provisional Government's decision to deal with the Kornilov affair by enlisting the help of the Bolsheviks backfired by influencing the October Revolution (Red October). This demonstrates that, by allowing the Bolsheviks to deal with the Kornilov affair, the Bolsheviks' popularity grew, negatively affecting Kerensky's Provisional Government in the October Revolution. This photo is valuable for demonstrating this effect of the Kornilov Affair.
  • Trotsky Organizes Red Guard to Defend Petrograd

    Trotsky Organizes Red Guard to Defend Petrograd
    This photo was chosen because it shows the Red Guard shooting at citizens while defending Petrograd. It portrays the strength of the Bolsheviks with their weapons and the lengths that they will go to in order to achieve their goals, which is something that Lenin and Trotsky agreed with.
  • Bolsheviks Overthrow the Provisional Government and Take Control

    Bolsheviks Overthrow the Provisional Government and Take Control
    (Dates vary as to what day this occurred, but all agree it was the beginning of November) The image depicts the Bolshevik forces on the day that they overthrew the provisional government. This contradicts the common idea that it was a group of ragtag individuals simply fighting for their beliefs. What’s seen is the opposite, a group of well trained and well-disciplined troopers carrying out orders. This demonstrates both how premeditated the coup was, and Lenin's determination.
  • Cheka Formed

    Cheka Formed
    The art piece chosen is a painting called "In Basements of Cheka" (1919) by artist Vladimirov. This photo was specifically chosen because it communicates how the Russian people felt about the secret police at the time - and how cruel they saw their acts.
  • The Constituent Assembly Meets and is Disbanded

    The Constituent Assembly Meets and is Disbanded
    The photo below reveals the tensions within the Constituent Assembly as opposing political parties elected in a general election face of in the parliamentary chambers. Red Guards surround the back of the chamber to show the Bolsheviks' political domination even though they hold a minority. With these elements, this photo is most useful at describing the meeting and disbandment of the Constituent Assembly as it demonstrates the tensions and power struggles that led to its disbandment.
  • Treaty of Brest-Litovsk

    Treaty of Brest-Litovsk
    This photo was chosen because of the way it shows what Russia lost in the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk in a simple way. It has three different parts, land that wasn't owned by Russia prior to the treaty, land that was owned by Russia prior to the treaty but was lost, and land that Russia continued to own after the treaty. It shows this in three distinct colors which makes it easy to understand.
  • Wartime Communism Created

    Wartime Communism Created
    (Exact day is inconclusive) The image depicts the salvaging of a dead horse by some peasants. The stark images evoked by this image illustrate how ineffective the policy was at keeping the peasantry and proletariat happy. It is also important to note how effective the policy was at upholding the military.
  • Red Terror

    Red Terror
    This photo was chosen because it is a German depiction of the Red Terror during 1919. So not only is it closely related to the time period, but it is from an outside perspective. The photo shows how foreigners viewed the Red Terror at this period. (Kayla)
  • Kolchak Begins Serious Attacks Against Reds from Siberia

    Kolchak Begins Serious Attacks Against Reds from Siberia
    The map below demonstrates the front lines of the Russian Civil War. Specifically, on the right side, Gen. Kolchak's offensive lines are illustrated as a result of his offensive on the Bolsheviks in March and April 1919. This map is the most effective demonstration of this event since it shows Kolchak's march on the Reds in the context of the three-pronged White offensive in the spring/summer of 1919.
  • Poles Move Toward Kiev

    Poles Move Toward Kiev
    This image is a Polish anti-Soviet political cartoon. This image is significant to the Kiev offensive because it demonstrates the reasons that lead the Poles to go on offense. The overbearing, unsettling Soviet man is being foiled by the young, heroic Polish soldier, being watched by the virgin Mary, and saving women and children. The religious and heroic themes insinuate that the polish believed that they were fighting for their existence as an independent nation.
  • Soviets Attempt to Take Warsaw

    Soviets Attempt to Take Warsaw
    This specific photo was picked because it displays the aftermath of the Battle of Warsaw, and shows Polish soldiers displaying captured Soviet flags. I find this photo significant because it communicated the significance of Warsaw on both the Polish and the Russians.
  • Tambov Rebellion

    Tambov Rebellion
    The image below best described the Tambov Rebellion because it demonstrates that it was truly a "peasant's revolt" where masses of farmers protested against the economic policy of grain requisitioning. Masses of peasants are displayed marching against the War Communism policy in the Tambov region. Further, this image is valuable since it shows a couple organizers with rifles herding the peasants, showing that the organization of this rebellion came from Bolshevik opposition.
  • Kronstadt Rebellion

    Kronstadt Rebellion
    This photo was chosen because of the way it portrays the sailors. It shows them in their sailor uniforms with a flag that says, "Death to the bourgeoisie". It indicates the fact that the people involved in this uprising are just young sailors who want a change so that they can be treated better when working and live happier lives.
  • Ending of Wartime Communism

    Ending of Wartime Communism
    This image focuses less on the internal aspects of the dissolution of War communism, but rather the international reaction. The eagerness of the European nations to rekindle the Russian trade fire demonstrates how much power the Russians still had in the world. The closing of War Communism and the opening of the NEP marked the time when other nations recognized Russia as powerful as well.
  • Treaty of Rapallo

    Treaty of Rapallo
    This photo was chosen because it conveys how important the Treaty of Rapallo was, especially in terms of the events with the Treaty of Versailles. It communicates the rebuilding of diplomatic relationships and all that was mended between Germany and Russia.
  • Formation of Soviet Union

    Formation of Soviet Union
    The photo below best demonstrates the formation of the Soviet Union since it shows that many "independent states" were conglomerated to form the Soviet Union. Although these states were considered autonomous regions, they were ultimately under the control of the Bolshevik government. Thus, this image showing how the USSR was comprised of several Bolshevik-controlled regions best demonstrated how the Bolsheviks consolidated control to maintain power.
  • Ukraine Brought Under Soviet Control

    Ukraine Brought Under Soviet Control
    This photo was chosen because it was the flag of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic before the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. The top portion of the flag obviously represents the Soviet Union because of how it is identical to their flag, but the bottom portion which was part of the original Ukrainian flag (on the top and slightly larger) was put there to symbolize the mightiness and beauty of the people, which shows how the Soviet Union cared about each of its nations.
  • Lenin's Death

    Lenin's Death
    This photo was chosen because it portrays Vladimir Lenin's funeral. The photo contains many bouquets of flowers with many officials around in a square around the casket. Stalin can be seen in the middle of the crowd which signifies how Stalin and Lenin were friends, especially considering how Stalin organized Lenin's funeral. It also indicates that Stalin would be the one to take Lenin's place, which is exactly what happened as he led the Soviet Union afterwards.