Leeds University Library

Leeds Russian Archive Collections Guide


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The Leeds Russian Archive, awarded Designation status in 2005, was established in 1982 and comprises some 650 collections of manuscripts, photographs and other archival material, ranging in size from single items to hundreds of boxes. There are over 10,000 books, journals, newspapers and other printed matter supplementary to the main archival collection.

The collections document Anglo-Russian contacts in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, including papers of members of the British community in Russia, travellers and diplomats, governesses and soldiers. Notable British professional and other organisations are represented, such as the British Universities Association of Slavists, the National Association for Soviet and Eastern European Studies (that merged to form the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies), the Association of Teachers of Russian and the Great Britain-USSR Association.

Collections document Russian and Russian emigre history, literature and culture, including the private, literary and other papers of Russian writers, notably Leonid Andreev (1871-1919) and Ivan Bunin (1870-1953), and the papers of the Russian railway engineer Yurii Lomonossoff (1876-1952), who occupied prominent positions under both the Tsarist and Bolshevik regimes. The archive of the Paris-based Russian refugee organisation Zemgor is held.

Catalogue Records

Catalogue records exist for the majority of archival collections. Each archival collection is represented with one catalogue record with a unique manuscript number. Material has been detailed at the item level, resulting in long descriptions dense with numerals (indicating, for instance, the number of documents, their dates and their item numbers) and some collection records are in draft form.

Printed books in the Leeds Russian Archive have been listed in chronological order of acquisition.

Access to the Bunin, Bunina and Zurov Collections

The University of Leeds is responsible for the administration of the Bunin, Bunina and Zurov collections as bodies of documents, and for their associated copyrights and intellectual property rights. This extends to material written by Bunin, Bunina and Zurov held by individuals and repositories elsewhere.

Please make requests for access to the collections in writing, well in advance of any proposed visit. Contact Special Collections to make a request.