V. I.   Lenin


To:   L. Y. GALPERIN[1]

Written: Written between July 31 and August 12, 1901
Published: First published in 1928 in Lenin Miscellany VIII. Sent from Munich to Baku. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1977], Moscow, Volume 43, pages 63b-65a.
Translated: Martin Parker and Bernard Isaacs
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2005). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.

We sent you a telegram—the meaning was quite clear—agreement. But bear in mind that communication by   wire is very dangerous, for they take copies of telegrams. Try confining yourself to the post. There is no need to come over to discuss details. All that can be arranged by letter. Do you happen to have an experienced printer? If so, mats, which are easy to send (in journals, etc.), can be used. The advantages of this method are: 1) no type is needed, 1a) it is far quicker, 2) less people, which means greater safety in underground work, 3) the paper will have a foreign look, which too is a big advantage from the stand point of secrecy. By way of experiment we shall send you shortly matrices enclosed in book binding, addressed to K....[2] Open them carefully, try them out and let us know the results as soon as you can. A universal stereotyper for making type-casts from matrices costs about 300 marks, but whether one can be freely obtained in Russia we do not know. Let us know what the size of your machine is. Can it print sheets the size of our Iskra? In general, send us at the earliest date some sample of your work.

If you have the technical facilities, try to put out as soon as possible at least one complete issue of Iskra (if you find it difficult to print an 8-page paper, such as No  6, at least put out No. 5—it’s four pages). It would be extremely important for us to have a copy of the Russian edition of Iskra in time for the conference[4] here, that is, within a month (at most a month and a half).

Since when are we 800 rubles in debt? Our funds are now low and the debt can be covered only if your printing facilities actually turn out at least three to five thousand copies of Iskra (4–8 pages) a month. If you manage to do that there will of course be a net income.

Where did you send the packages you received? Why send 5 poods to Yekaterinoslav? We do not risk sending more than a pood or two as a first try; it doesn’t matter if it costs more. Can consignments to Yekaterinoslav be marked “Bücher”[3] ? How long does delivery take? This is   very important. When writing addresses, separate the words, otherwise you can’t tell the name apart from the town and street.


[1] Written together with Krupskaya.—Ed.

[2] Identity not established.—Ed.

[3] Books.—Ed.

[4] A reference to the “Unity” Conference of R.S.D.L.P. organisations abroad held October 4–5, 1901, in Zurich. It was attended by 6 members of the Iskra and Zarya organisation abroad, 8 members of the Sotsial-Demokrat organisation (including 3 members of the Emancipation of Labour group), 16 members of the Union of Russian Social-Democrats (including 5 members of the Bund’s Committee Abroad), and 3 members of the Borba group. On the first item on the agenda, “Agreement in Principle and Instructions to Editorial Boards”, Lenin delivered an eloquent speech, censuring the opportunist activity of the Union. When the opportunist amendments and addenda to the June resolution adopted by the Third Congress of the Union of Russian Social-Democrats were announced at the conference, the revolutionary section of the conference (members of the Iskra and Zarya and the Sotsial Demokrat organisations) read out a statement saying that unity was impossible and left the conference. On Lenin’s initiative these organisations in October 1901 united into the League of Russian Revolutionary Social-Democracy Abroad.

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