Soviet Archives Exhibit

Welcome to the Library of Congress's Soviet Archives exhibit.

How to use the exhibit

This exhibit is divided into many small displays divided on two floors. You can visit them in any order, or follow the footsteps for a guided tour. The guided tour will bring you back to this entrance room.

Almost every display contains images of documents from the Soviet Archives. These images are too small to be readable, but when you click on them, you will get the full size originals (each are 100-400 Kb apiece; do expect some color changes). Hanging next to most displays is a translation on some scrolls, indicated by a small icon:

It should be noted that the images often show only fragments of the document, so don't be confused if the translation doesn't seem to match the image.

You can start the guided tour on either of the two floors of the exhibit hall.

The first floor, "Internal Workings of the Soviet System", covers internal politics and aspects of Soviet reality that were hidden or falsified in official propaganda. Follow the golden footsteps on the floor for a guided tour.

The second floor, "The Soviet Union and the United States", shows how Soviet-American relations were conducted between governments, between the publics of the two countries, and between the Communist parties of the USSR and the USA. Climb the stairs to the second floor and follow the footsteps for a guided tour.

If you prefer (or when the guide is drinking coffee) you can forget about the guided tour and walk straight to one of the displays on the first floor or climb the stairs directly to the second floor. If you already know where you want to go, you can use the Overview of Objects and Topics.

There is a free EXPO Shuttle Bus waiting outside. It is very comfortable and quickly takes you to other exciting EXPO exhibits. It also makes a routine stop at the EXPO Ticket Office.

Next to the entrance door, there is the EXPO Bulletin Board, with all kinds of notes from various visitors. Among other things, it contains up to date info from the EXPO organization.

At the EXPO Book Store you can pick up a handbook with the texts from this exhibit.

When you leave this exhibit, please take a leaflet about the Library of Congress or one that has the transcription of a live, online discussion held June 18, 1992 between the Librarian of Congress, James H. Billington, Mr. Pikhoia of the Russina Archives, and users of America Online from all around the U.S.

The orignial data was copied by FTP from Questions or comments about the online exhibit should be directed to the Library of Congress World Wide Web Team (

wishes to thank Frans van Hoesel ( who created the hypermedia interface for this exhibit and Marc Andreessen ( for the corrections in the text. We also like to thank Jeff Barry ( who made several good suggestions and for his knowledge of the russian language. If you liked the exhibit, please send frans a short message, or use the EXPO Bulletin Board.

The text and images in the Soviet Archives Online Exhibit are for the personal use of students, scholars, and the public. Any commercial use or publication of them is strictly prohibited.

Hypermedia created by Frans van Hoesel,