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November 11, 2011

Hoover acquires unique photos of Nikita Khrushchev and other Soviet leaders

Khrushchev on visit, in May 1961, to the autonomous Soviet Republic of Adjara (A
Image credit: N. Anastas’ev and V. Babaian
Khrushchev on visit, in May 1961, to the autonomous Soviet Republic of Adjara (Adzharia) in the present Republic of Georgia.

In May 1961 Nikita Khrushchev visited the autonomous Soviet Republic of Adjara (Adzharia) in the present Republic of Georgia. The chief communist official in the region, Aleksandr Dursunovich Tkhilaishvili, was his guide and host. The photographs in this collection depict some scenes and meetings that took place during this visit. Of particular interest is someone in the crowd greeting Khrushchev holding up a large photo of Joseph Stalin, who at the time was out of favor with Khrushchev and his supporters.

Tkhilaishvili was the first secretary of the Adjara Regional Committee (Obkom) of the Communist Party of Georgia in the 1960s and 1970s, and Khrushchev was not the only important official he hosted. The other albums in the collection depict visits by other Soviet party and military officials, including Marshals V. A. Sudets and K. S. Moskalenko, Assistant Prime Minister L. V. Smirnov, and Assistant Minister of Defense (and member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union) S. S. Mariakhin. One album is devoted to the Twenty-second Congress of the Communist Party of the USSR (17–31 October 1961), at which Khrushchev promised the advent of communism by 1980. These albums complement the Nestor Lakoba papers, which contain photographs of Joseph Stalin and his inner circle visiting and vacationing in Georgia in the 1930s. They can also be used to illustrate materials in the Archives of the Soviet Communist Party.