If it happened that one of your ancestors fell under the skating rink of the Stalinist repression machine, and you only have information about this fact from relatives, but there is no official data, then you need to turn to a source called “The book of memory of the victims of Stalinist repression”.
Stalinist repressions are massive political repressions carried out in the USSR during the period of Stalinism (late 1920s – early 1950s). The number of direct victims of repression (persons sentenced for political (counter-revolutionary) crimes to death or imprisonment, evicted, exiled) is estimated at several million. In addition, researchers point out the serious consequences that these repressions had for Soviet society as a whole, its political structure.
Probably there is not a single corner in the former USSR where there would be no repressed people. Whose fate did not break and did not destroy the dictatorial policy of the power of the Soviets.
On the basis of regional archives, organizations began to create Books in memory of victims of political repression. And the best thing about this is that the information in the lists is surname-based and laid out on the Internet. And if there is a fact of repressed ancestors in your family history, they will certainly be on these lists. You just need to search.
In order to preserve the memory of the victims and help people restore the history of their families, the Memorial Society in 1998 began to create a single database, bringing together information from regional Memory Books that have already been published or just prepared for publication. The results of this work, supplemented by information from a number of other sources, make up the main content of this resource.
The main, most popular categories of victims of political repression in the USSR
- The first mass category is people arrested on political charges by state security agencies (VChK – OGPU – NKVD – MGB – KGB) and sentenced by judicial or quasi-judicial (CCA, “troika”, “deuce”, etc.) instances to the death penalty, to different terms of imprisonment in camps and prisons or to exile.
- Another mass category of political repressed people is peasants who were administratively expelled from their place of residence during the campaign to “destroy the kulaks as a class.”
- The third mass category of victims of political repression is the people who were completely deported from the places of traditional settlement to Siberia, Central Asia and Kazakhstan. The most widespread of these administrative deportations were during the war, in 1941-1945. Some were evicted preemptively as potential accomplices of the enemy (Koreans, Germans, Greeks, Hungarians, Italians, Romanians), others were accused of collaborating with the Germans during the occupation (Crimean Tatars, Kalmyks, Caucasian peoples). The total number of those deported and mobilized to the “labor army” amounted to 2.5 million people.
Memory books are an incredibly unique resource for genealogy searches. You can use them on such resources:
- base.memo.ru – Victims of political terror in the USSR.
- stalin.memo.ru/names – Stalin’s death lists.
- visz.nlr.ru/person – Returned names. Books in memory of Russia.
- rosagr.natm.ru/memorybook.php – Book In memory of “Repressed Russia”.
- old.memo.ru/history/nkvd/gulag/maps/ussri.htm – Interactive map of the forced labor camp system.
Good luck in finding.