Comintern Archive (Third Communist International), 1917-1940

This collection of Comintern documents is on microfiche stored in the basement of Lamont, call numbers W 6020 and W 6021. It was filmed at the former central Communist Party archive in Moscow (as of 2002 Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi arkhiv sotsialnoi i politicheskoi istorii -- RGASPI, previously RTsKhIDNI). As of summer 2002 the Harvard Libraries hold only the records of Comintern congresses (1919-1935) and plenums (1917-1940), although the microfilming project appears to include more documents. The records of the congresses and plenums include materials of the preparatory and working commissions, stenographic reports of meetings, draft presentations and reports, and data on delegates. Many of the draft documents include marginal comments by major Soviet leaders, including I. V. Stalin.

Finding Aids: There is a finding aid published by RTsKhIDNI/RGASPI on CD-ROM held in the CD-ROM filing cabinets behind the documents/microforms desk in Lamont. The call number is CD-ROM DOC HX 11.I5 C58 1998x. Ask for it from the attendant or, if no one is there, scoot back there and get it yourself. The CD-ROM includes an excellent introduction to the collection which identifies the location of materials from each congress and plenum by microfiche card number.

The CD-ROM also includes a searchable index of persons and topics, but I found the search engine quite difficult to use. Researchers would be better off turning to the actual RGASPI opisi which are on the microfiche cards before actual documents from a given fond.