The First All-Russian Congress of Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Councils

The First All-Russian Congress of Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Councils

The first All-Russian Congress of Soviets of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Councils was held from June 3 (16) to June 24 (July 7) in Petrograd in the building of the 1st Cadet Corps on Vasilievsky Island. In total, 1,090 deputies were elected, including 28 Socialist-Revolutionaries (SRs for short), 248 Mensheviks, 105 Bolsheviks, 32 Menshevik-Internationalists, etc. The major Congress’ discussions were focused on the issues of public authorities and an attitude towards the First World War. The Congress elected a permanent body - the All-Russian Central Executive Committee of the Soviets of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies (VTsIK) with its elected chairman Menshevik N. N. Chkheidze (read more Elected VtsIK of I Convocation). Following the Congress’ results, it was decided to support the Socialist ministers in the government and to continue the “revolutionary war” without annexations and indemnities. The Bolshevik Party argued against it, V. I. Lenin called the Socialist-Revolutionaries and Mensheviks “compromisers” and asked to delegate power to the Soviets. Soviet historical tradition ascribes to Lenin enouncing at the Congress of the phrase “There is such a party.” The Congress of Soviets organized demonstration, which was acting, against all the odds, under Bolshevik slogans.

Numerous studies, memoirs, correspondence, archival documents, visual materials, allowing to get familiar with both the chronicle of events and the position of various political figures of this period, are presented.

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