On October 12 (25), 1917 the Statute on the Petrograd Military-revolutionary committee was approved during the closed session of the executive committee of the Petrograd Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies.
The Military-revolutionary committee of Petrograd (MRCP) was an extraordinary body of Petrosoviet that had been effective during the preparation and realization of the armed revolt in October of 1917. After that (up to December of 1917) it had been an extraordinary body of the state power.
On October 11 (24), 1917 the board of the military department of the Executive committee of the Petrograd Soviet outlined a detailed project of a decree on the Petrograd defense Revolutionary committee. On October 12 (25), the Executive committee of the Petrograd Soviet approved this statute with some insignificant amendments and called this new body the Military-revolutionary committee.
The statute stipulated that the Petrograd Military-revolutionary committee determines the number of military forces and auxiliary means necessary to defend the capital. These forces should not be withdrawn from the city. It also develops the defense plan, takes stock and registers the personnel of the Petrograd garrisons and its environments, takes measures on maintaining of revolutionary discipline among workers and soldiers, etc. The main goals of the MRCP were determined by the Central Committee of the Russian Social-Democratic Labor Party and consisted of mobilization of revolutionary forces for an armed revolt, providing its military and technical training, unite as a single force the Red Guardia, the garrison soldiers and the Baltic Navy sailors.
The Petrograd Military-revolutionary committee numbered several tens of members, among them bolshevists, left socialist revolutionary, anarchists. On October 16 (29) during the meeting of the Central Committee of the Russian Social-Democratic Labor Party there was selected the party’s Military-revolutionary center (A.S. Bubnov, F.E. Dzerzhinsky, Ya.M. Sverdlov, I.V. Stalin and M.S. Uritsky). Later this center became the main ruling body of the Petrograd Military-revolutionary committee.
In the morning of October 25 (November 7) the Petrograd Military-revolutionary committee issued an address “To the citizens of Russia” telling that the provisional government is deposed and the rule had passed to the Military-revolutionary committee.
As the central state bodies had been formed the MRCP reduced its functions. On December 5 (18), 1917 the Petrograd Military-revolutionary committee issued a report that said that all its tasks had been completed, that it ceased to exist and passes its commissars and its departments personnel under the authority of the corresponding Peoples’ commissariat and the departments of the all-Russian Central Executive Committee.
Lit.: Городецкий Е. Н. Рождение Советского государства. [М., 1965]; Кара-Мурза С. Г. Военно-революционный комитет // История советского государства и права. Петроградский Военно-революционный комитет. Документы и материалы. Т. 1—3. М., 1966-1967; Обращение Петроградского военно-революционного комитета «К гражданам России!» 25 октября (7 ноября) 1917 г. // Декреты Советской власти. Т. I. М., 1957. С. 2; То же [Электронный ресурс]. URL: http://www.hist.msu.ru/ER/Etext/DEKRET/first.htm; Подвойский Н. И. Военная организация ЦК РСДРП (б) и Военно-революционный комитет в 1917 г. // Красная летопись. 1923. № 8; Рид Д. 10 дней, которые потрясли мир. М., 1957.
Based on the Presidential Library’s materials: