The real story of nonmarital son of Stalin

The real story of nonmarital son of Stalin
Автор: Alexey BOGOMOLOV
20.04.2016

“The case of cohabitation of the exiled settler Dzhugashvili with non-adult Lidya Pereprygina”.

“Sovershenno sekretno” for the first time publishes the closed materials from special folder of the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee about Stalin*s son Alexander Davydov

In the last quarter of 20th century it was written and spoken quite a lot about the illegitimate children of Joseph Stalin. All of that started since 1990ies, when pseudo documentary articles and books started to appear. Such works as Chronics of Stalin*s family life by Kolesnik A. – Kharkov, 1990; Bastards of the red leader: documentary story about two unknown Stalin*s sons –  by Konstantin Kuzakov and Alexander Dzhugashvili-Davydov /  newspaper  “Rush hour” -1995.-Oct.21; Around Stalin. Historical biographical reference book — by Torchinov V.A., Leontjuk A.M.,  Saint-Petersburg, 2000  are worth to mention.

 

In 2007 in Great Britain “Young Stalin” was published — a book of a journalist and historian Saimon Sebaga Montefiore. He wrote: mother of one more unadmitted child of Stalin is 13-year-old Lidiya Pereprygina, with whom 34-year-old  Stalin lived in Kureyka where he was exiled in 1914… This relationship would be endured patiently, but Lidya became pregnant and her brothers started to be furious with him. Local gendarmes blustered to open a criminal case, and only Stalin*s promise to marry Lidya when she will be adult, averted the scandal… Son of Stalin Alexander was born in 1917. But Stalin escaped from the exile earlier. Lidya became a hairdresser in Igarka. She got married a local fisher Yakov Davydow, who adopted her child. In the secret report of General Serov, the Chief of KGB of the USSR to Khrushchev is mentioned, that “Stalin had never helped her”. Alexander became a postman.  In 1935 he was called to Krasnoyarsk and asked out (as also in case with Kuzakova*s son) to sign the paper with promising not to say anybody about his origin. Alexander Davydov passed through the war, was wounded   two times, came up through the ranks until the rank of a major. After the war he was working as a canteen director in Novokuznetzk. He had three children – Stalin*s grandchilds. Alexander died in 1987”.

After publication of that book there were performed the investigation of “Ogonyok”in the same 2007, and articles in “MK” and “Komsomolskaya Pravda”, where the version of the existence of nonmarital son of Stalin named Alexander was based on family legends, stories told by neighbors, etc. Similarly, according to stories and legends, the NTV channel film “The main hero” was made in 2008. Only one document which is mentioned at all by any authors was the “secret report of Ivan Serov to Nikita Khrushchev”, dated by June, 1956 and declassified as far as 20 years ago. By the way, historican Boris Ilizarov in TVZ channel film “Nonmarital kids of Joseph Stalin” from the series “Chronicles of Moscow routine life” filmed in October 2015, and the author of the book “Stalin: paradoxes of power, 1878 – 1928”, American historian, Professor  of Princeton University Stiven Kotkin are also talking about that report. “Serov report” (its originality is out of doubts) contains many strange points.

The fact that Stalin had no interest for the fortune of his son and his mother, and that no historical documents concerning that story were preserved was the keynote of all these films and materials. Indeed, besides showing of that report, no other real document of USSR power structures or upper party instances which could bring any light at this affair was published in mass media…

As a professional historian having enough work experience with Public Record Offices I was pretty often dealing with the fact, that there are suddenly coming the documentary evidences of probably the most  fantastic versions of events from national history. While working on the theme “60th anniversary of the twentieth Congress of the CPSU” in Russian state archive of socio-political history I found an act № 494 from the bordereau 171 of the fund № 17 (Politbureau of CK CPSU). The list of its use (the first page where researches who study these documents normally make their signatures) was obviously clean. The only one record reported about the fact, that all the documents of that act were disclosed in 1998, long time before the appearance of western books and national journalistic fact-findings about Stalin*s nonmarital son. I left on the page my autograph and date – 18 January 2016 and started the examination of all the documents one after another. A sensation was waiting for me already in the first package of documents!

 

“Comrade Stalin is interested in them”

Replicated in historical-publicistic literature and internet articles fragment of the “Serov*s secret report” about life circumstances of Stalin in the exile is really not the resulting material of investigation, which was performed by the Presidium of CPSU Central Committee on such a matter, but it could be considered to be one of the plots confirming the facts already known to highest leaders of the party.  Not to allow any disagreements with colleagues-historians, let us to introduce an item from the letter of Serov to Khrushchev completely.

“Moreover, according to the story of the citizen Lidya Perelygina it was fixed out, that I.V.Stalin while being in Kureyka, had seduced her at the age of 14 y.o. and started cohabiting. Due to that I.V. Stalin was called by gendarme Laletin for criminal prosecution because of his cohabiting with an infant. I.V.Stalin gave his word to gendarme Laletin to marry Perelygina when she becomes adult.

As Perelygina told in May of that year, approximately in 1913 she gave birth to a child, who died. In 1914 the second child was born, he was named Alexander. After the end of exile Stalin departed, and she was urged to get marry local peasant Davydov, who adopted the born boy Alexander. During all the years Stalin had never given her any help. Nowadays Alexander serves in Soviet Army and has a title of a major”.

We should remind the readers, that quoted and replicated report, which was made not on personal blank of the Chairman of KGB, but on the ordinary blank of KGB of the USSR is dated as 4th of June, 1956.  And it has a reference to the fact that in May 1956 “citizen Perelygina” was interrogated concerning the circumstances of her acquaintance with Stalin and birth of her children. And here the most interesting begins. Letter from June addressed to Khrushchev has lots of mess. For example, cohabitant of Stalin Lidiya Pereprygina from Kureyka is named as Perelygina, year of Alexander*s birth is fixed not as 1917, but as 1914. Also at the same time Serov refers to the fact that “Perelygina” told about the details of relationship with the future “leader of nations” and about the fact that in 1913 she gave a birth to a child, who died. Let us put in brackets, that Stalin arrived to Kureyka not in 1913, but in March 0f 1914th

 And what is doing here the already mentioned interrogation from the May 1956? Whom Lidya Pereprygina (let us name her surname right) told about Stalin? Were there any witnesses of their relationship? According to whose initiative gendarme Laletin suddenly started to be anxious with moral make-up of the future “leader of nations”?  And is that true, that comrade Stalin was never interested about the fortune of his relatives from Kureyka?  To all these questions we got the full answers after investigation of materials of fact-finding concerning Stalin and his nonmarital son, which was performed by the Presidium of the CK CPSU and KGB of the USSR in spring 1956.

So, let us start from the very beginning. As became clear, the most important source of information concerning that problem was secretary of the CPSU Central Committee Averkii Borisovich Aristov. His letter to Nikita Khrushchov ( fund 17, register 171, act 494, sheet 1) is written not on the form of Central Committee secretary, but on the simple paper sheet of A4 format. But on the upper right side one can find a mark; letters O.P. are underlined, which means a high degree of secrecy and transmission of that letter to special folder of the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee.   

  Actually, already the first paragraph of this text breaks out all the thesis of researches and journalists concerning the fact that Stalin had no interest to the family of Pereprygins. Here is what Averkii Aristov wrote to Khrushchov: “While my presence as a secretary of Krasnoyarsk regional committee of the CPSU (from July 1944 up to February 1950 – author*s ref.) during one of the visits to Moscow in the end of 1946 I had a call from comrade Poskryobyshev (Stalin*s secretary – author*s ref.), and he asked, what do I know about the Ivanovs and Pereprygins living in Kureyka, where comrade Stalin was in exile. I answered that I know nothing about the Ivanovs and Pereprygins. Comrade Poskryobyshev asked me to inquire about these people after returning back to Krasnoyarsk, because comrade Stalin is interested in them”.

Performing this task, Aristov sent the instructor of regional committee P.Sirotenko to Kureyka and Dudinka to make him able to collect information which Stalin was interested in. But facts taken by Sirotenko had such a character that made it not possible telling all of them to generalissimo. Here is what secretary Aristov wrote about that situation: “Coming back from the trip, comrade Sirotenko reported me, that he found the Ivanovs and Pereprygins, and told me that comrade Stalin lived with 14-year-old Lidya Pereprygina and that she has a son from him. At the same time Lidya Pereprygina gave a picture of his son Alexander.

At that time, having got such information, I definitely could not tell comrade Poskryobyshev  about Pyotr Ivanov, who knew Stalin and rebelled against his living with non-adult Lidya Pereprygina, and about Pereprygin Iov – the elder brother of Lidya, who complained gendarme concerning Stalin. Ion and Lidya Perepryginy were orphans. Now I have restored all of that and decided to inform you”.

Aristov*s letter is dated by 28th of May, 1956. It has a resolution of Vladimir Chernukha, the chief assistant of the CPSU Common Department (he often performed the most important Khrushchev*s missions): “to send to the members of the Presidium of the Central Committee, candidates to members of the Presidium of the Central Committee and secretaries of the Central Committee of the CPSU."

Did Ivan Serov, the Chairman of the KGB of the USSR, know about the letter of Aristov and investigation of regional committee*s instructor Sirotenko? We answer this question. On the 19th of May, 1956, or before nine days to the date, when Aristov sent his message to Khrushchev, Serov wrote Aristov a note showing that the report of Sirotenko was transmitted to Moscow through KGB channels. Unlike his “report” from June, it was made on the form of the Chairman of the KGB of the USSR under the Council of Ministers of the USSR. By blue pencil (obviously, Serov did not trust the typists) it was written: Central Committee of the CPSU, comrade Aristov A.B. (personally). Herewith I send obtained from Krasnoyarsk note of Sirotenko and pictures. I.Serov”.

The message is a little bit unusual.  Not only because it is written by pencil, it also has a mark “personally”, as if it was possible to pass a letter of KGB Chairman to the secretary of the Central Committee through third persons. And also this exclamation mark in the end of the letter. It is a sigh of importance. Most probably, Aristov was waiting for this letter and, especially, photos. And there is one interesting point,- that both in Serov*s letter and letter from Aristov it is mentioned about pictures plurally, but in the message to Khrushchev takes place a correction and instead of primarily written words “two photos are attached”  — there is staying simply “a photo”. One photo presents also in studied archieve act…

But the most interesting and detailed description of Stalin*s adventures in Kureyka is contained in the letter of the former instructor of Krasnoyarsk regional committee of the Communist Party P.Sirotenko, who occupied in 1956 the directorship of Berezovsky career administration, but brilliantly remembered all the events happened nine years ago… 

 

“Got letters from him”

On the 4th of May, 1956 P.Sirotenko, a former instructorof the Department of propaganda and agitation of the Krasnoyarsk regional Committee of the CPSU, executor of Stalin – Poskrebyshev – Aristov mission sent Aristov a letter, detailed enough. He wrote (spelling and punctuation preserved. – Author): "In January 1947, when you were the Secretary of the regional committee of the CPSU, you have ordered me to fly to the North: Dudinka – Kureyka and find holders of two names: IVANOV and PERETOKIN.

On the basis of the materials collected during the trip I fixed, that PERETOKIN does not exist at all, this is none other but PEREPRYGIN, the name of the family who housed comrade STALIN.

In Dudinka I had to find very fast, that Pyotr IVANOV, who knew comrade Stalin very close, according to the words of his wife Darya Alekseevna, was very disgusted for the fact of Stalin*s cohabitation with one of Pereprygins* daughter.

Apparently, Pyotr Ivanov, who had known Stalin personally and did not like his appetites to pedophilia, died before 1947. And instructor Sirotenko continued his investigation which took more than one month. At the end of March 1947 he went to Kureyka to the local old-timer Alexey Yakovlevitch Taraseev. “I met him in the end of March 1947, that time he was 102 years old. He told me, that altogether with IVANOV he and Ion PEREPRYGIN, the eldest of the orphans PEREPRYGINS were called to gendarme LALETIN for making an act concerning cohabitation of exiled settler DZHUGASHVILI and non-adult Lidya PEREPRYGINA.

And only after he gave his word to marry her after she becomes full age, law case was stopped…

Old man told me, that Lidya Platonovna PEREPRYGINA (DAVYDOVA) lives in the village Angutikha which is located between Kureyka and Turukhansk (village Angutikha was located in 1558 kilometres from Krasnoyarsk and in 50 kilometres from Turukhansk – Author). When I met her in April 1947, I got the following:

PEREPRYGINA Lidya Platonovna born in1900 started cohabiting with Stalin when she was 14 years old. Being with STALIN she gave a birth to a boy, but he lived not a long and died. STALIN gave his word to gendarmes that when she becomes full-aged, he marries her officially. Before his escape (Stalin left Kureyka in December 1916 – Author) she remained pregnant and gave a birth to a boy named Alexander.

  She confirms, that first time she got letters from him and even one card, which according to her order was found by director of museum Jurin; it was hidden on the roof of the house in Kureyka”.

Here we will stop for a minute and mark, that probably nobody of “ordinary mortals” in 1947 would be so brave to tell wrong things to the secretary of the regional committee of the Communist Party. So, most probably, Stalin was not only a father of Alexander, but also had a correspondence with his mother for the first time.

But Stalin was Stalin, and life is going. Until nowadays all researches somehow passed by the point, when and why Lidya Pereprygina got married. Answer could be found in the note of instructor Sirotenko: “After arising of talks, that Stalin was killed at the front, she was matched by DAVYDOV Yakov Semyonovitch, and married him. Only in four years when she was shown one of the portraits of STALIN in the newspaper, she recognized him as a father of her son. But as she was married another one, she thought not necessary to remind him about herself and her son. At my request Lidya Platonovna gave me a card of her son Alexander, which I pass you now with this letter”.

It is quite interesting the fact, that former instructor of Krasnoyarsk CPSU regional committee almost for ten years had saved at home the picture of nonmarital son of Stalin, which was dangerous enough by itself…

 

Promised to marry and did not marry

Actually nothing was done “for no reason” in the highest organs of political power – Politbureau and Presidium of the CPSU. Let*s think for the beginning about the history of 1946-1947, when 67-year-old Stalin suddenly wanted to get information about his relatives. The executor of Stalin*s mission, instructor of propaganda and agitation department of Krasnoyarsk CPSU regional committee was urged to travel for 4 months through snowy Siberian scopes. Let us to remind you, that there were the first after-war years with hunger in the country, when every kopeck and liter of fuel were on a special account. But instructor who performed the order of the leader had all the facilities in his disposal – from polar aviation airplanes (it was possible to move fast from Krasnoyarsk to northern territories only by aero transportation) up to off-roaders and dog sleds.

Kureyka, Angutikha andother settlements located relatively close to Turukhansk traditionally were the places of exile – as before Stalin, as also after him. One can see familiar names Davydov and Taraseev among their founders. In 1947 exiled “bourgeous nationalists” were living in “Stalin places”. Frankly speaking, Stalin was not told about that. But, nevertheless, in his letter to the secretary of the CPSU Central Committee Aristov the former instructor of regional committee Sirotenko had mentioned a story of local resident about life conditions in Kureyka during his visit: “The same person, TARASEEV,  paid my attention to the fact, that all of them – old-timers – as were poor wretches at tzarism, as now also are very unfortunate. Indeed, they lived in ruined old houses, had unbelievable need at the same time when special contingent (refers to exiled and deporteed – Author) Latvians and Estonians, families of faschists, having membership in collective farms, got loans and built houses. All of that was done with the idea that Kureyka collective farm where STALIN lived, should look out as a prosperous place”.

Most likely, that remedies spent for four-month duty journey were materialized into short note for Stalin. Its contents is unknown for us, but it is possible to understand from the letter of the secretary of the Central Committee Aristov to Khrushchev that no details regarding relationship of Stalin and Lidya Pereprygina and the opinion of him by gone comrade Ivanov were reported to the leader. There was a task to find “carriers of surnames” – they were found, they are living in certain places somewhere and somewhere. Initiative was punished that times. And details were hidden in memory “just in case”.

And that “case” took place in spring 1956, when after the XXth Congress of the CPSU the company for Stalin*s personality cult disclosure had started. For what purpose it was necessary to make clear forty-year-old details of life and sexual frolics of young 36-year-old Joseph Dzhugashvili in Syberian exile? Most probably, the answer here hides in Khrushchev*s intention to collect as much as possible damaging information about Stalin and throw it out, when it is necessary, into mass media space. And, according to existing documentary sources, collected damaging information was quite serious. Stalin could be blamed in several sins at once.

The first is, of course, cohabitation with an infant. And the story about Pyotr Ivanov who knew Stalin during his exile period and was angry by that fact, and brother of Lidya Pereprygina Ion who complained gendarme Laletin against Stalin was quite fit into the scheme of damaging information.

The second story which mainly could change the opinion of female part of the population concerning Stalin – the fact that he officially promised to marry and really did not marry. He left Kureyka in the very end of 1916, when his cohabitant already was 16 years old (since 1830 that was marital age for females in Russia).

And the third sin is that he knew about the birth of his child (this was mentioned by the elder sister of Nadezhda Allilueva, Stalin*s second wife) and not only did not help him and his mother, but until 1946 had almost no interest to his fate.

From all of that by means of well organized system of soviet propaganda it was possible to organize a bright moral “cocktail”, demonstrating special negative features of comrade Stalin. But it looks like as up to July 1956 they decided to refuse from that idea. Anyway, there is a red pencil mark on the letter of secretary of the CPSU Central Committee Aristov to Kkrushchev: “To the archive.  V. Black humor. 2.VII.56”. And abovementioned “report of Serov” was sent to the archive (signed by Molotov) two weeks later.

It is possible to assume, that up to the middle of the summer 1956 the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee had quite enough materials to continue the criticism of the personality cult of Stalin and Stalin himself in case of necessity. And the son of generalissimo was afraid of nobody. There were no chances for him to be legitimated, he was far from political life and his mother had no claims. Those, who are interested in further fortune of Stalin* son Alexander Davydov and also grand- and great grandchilds of the leader by that genealogical line, could examine the national press in recent years and find there an interview with a grandson and also other information from family history.

  As for us, we have limited us by exclusively documentary sources, giving, as we could imagine, a situation picture which is true enough.  But obviously that picture is not full. There are still not available the materials of investigation of the KGB of the USSR, performed in Krasnoyarsk region in April – May 1956 (Ivan Serov is briefly mentioning about it), there is no information about discussing of that question by members of the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee, there are no full biographical data of all citizens, mentioned in the letters of Aristov, Serov and Sirotenko. So historians are still having a wide field for investigations…

 

Editorial board thanks the employees of Russian State Archieve of Social Political History  for their help in preparing the materials and providing illustration.

 

Photo 1. Nonmarital son of Stalin Alexander and “official” children Wasil and Svetlana. Is any similarity there?

 

Photo 2. “Place of the crime” – Stalin*s house in Kureyka. In 1949 it was removed inside Pantheon.

 

Letter 1.

To comrade Khrushchev N.S.

“While my presence as a secretary of Krasnoyarsk regional committee of the CPSU during one of the visits to Moscow in the end of 1946 I had a call from comrade Poskryobyshev, and he asked, what do I know about the Ivanovs and Pereprygins living in Kureyka, where comrade Stalin was in exile. I answered that I know nothing about the Ivanovs and Pereprygins. Comrade Poskryobyshev asked me to inquire about these people after returning back to Krasnoyarsk, because comrade Stalin is interested in them.

Coming back to Krasnoyarsk, I sent the instructor of the CPSU regional committee comrade Sirotenko to Kureyka and Dudinka concerning that question. Coming back from the trip, comrade Sirotenko reported me, that he found Ivanovs and Pereprygins, and told me that comrde Stalin lived with 14-year-old Lidya Pereprygina and that she has a son from him. At the same time Lidya Pereprygina gave a picture of his son Alexander.

At that time, having got such information, I definitely could not tell comrade Poskryobyshev  about Pyotr Ivanov, who knew Stalin and rebelled against his living with non-adult Lidya Pereprygina, and about Pereprygin Iov – the elder brother of Lidya, who complained gendarme concerning Stalin. Ion and Lidya Perepryginy were orphans. Now I have restored all of that and decided to inform you”.

I attach the letter of comrade Sirotenko and photo of Alexander – a son of Lidya Pereprygina whom she considers to be a son of Stalin.

 

A.Aristov, 28.V.56.

 

Send to the members of the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee, candidates to the members of the Presidium of the CPSU central committee and secretaries of the CPSU central committee.

Chernukha

28.V.56

 

To the archive

Chernukha

 

 

Letter 2.

To the secretary of the CPSU Central Committee comrade Aristov Averkii Borisovitch from the former instructor of propaganda and agitation department of Krasnoyarsk CPSU regional committee Sirotenko P.

 

In January 1947, when You were Secretary of the regional committee of the CPSU, you have ordered me to fly to the North: Dudinka – Kureyka and find a holders of two names: IVANOV and PERETOKIN.

PEREPRYGINA Lidya Platonovna born in1900 started cohabiting with Stalin when she was 14 years old. Being with STALIN she gave a birth to a boy, but he lived not a long and died. STALIN gave his word to gendarmes that when she becomes full-aged, he marries her officially. Before his escape (Stalin left Kureyka in December 1916 – Author) she remained pregnant and gave a birth to a boy named Alexander.

  She confirms, that first time she got letters from him and even one card, which according to her order was found by director of museum Jurin; it was hidden on the roof of the house in Kureyka.

 

After arising of talks, that Stalin was killed at the front, she was matched by DAVYDOV Yakov Semyonovitch, and married him. Only in four years when she was shown one of the portraits of STALIN in the newspaper, she recognized him as a father of her son. But as she was married another one, she thought not necessary to remind him about herself and her son. At my request Lidya Platonovna gave me a card of her son Alexander, which I pass you now with this letter.

Director of Beryozovsky career department

Sirotenko

4th May, 1956.

 


Авторы:  Alexey BOGOMOLOV

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