Trotsky Writes

This 27 February letter from Leon Trotsky relates to the 1918 Russian sojourn of Bruce Lockhart made famous in the latter’s extremely popular Memoirs of a British agent.  Lockhart was sent to Russia in order to try to influence the outcome of the ongoing Brest-Litovsk talks.  The British and their Entente allies were desperate to avoid any agreement on the Eastern Front that could allow the Central Powers to focus their attention more carefully on its Western counterpart.

When the official British Embassy left Petrograd, still then the Russian capital, Lockhart chose to stay on.  In the letter, Trotsky, as the People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs, requests that various bodies and officials give assistance to Lockhart and his assistants Hicks and Garstin.  Trotsky then adds a handwritten note that these men’s personal provisions should not be requisitioned.

The letter comes from the Templewood papers, the archive of Sir Samuel John Gurney Hoare (1880-1959).  More can be read about the letter in this blog post:

[Trotsky letter] Templewood II:2(27)

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