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Microform Collection: The Papers of Prince Gregory Potemkin

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Tanja Lorkovic
Email: tatjana.lorkovic@yale.edu
Phone: (203) 432-1861
Fax: (203) 432-7231
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From the Russian State Military-Historical Archive (RGVIA)

This is a superlative collection for scholars of Russian history and armed forces containing diverse documents from perhaps the most prominent Russian political and military leader of the eighteenth century. G. A. Potemkin-Tavricheskiy (1739-1791) is generally considered to have been the foremost minister of Catherine the Great. Potemkin's major role in Russia's internal and external policies, as well as the broad array of issues that came under his jurisdiction, explain the wide range of documents in his archive and make it a collection of the first rank.

Catalogue No. 1, the bulk of the collection, features documents from Potemkin's military field office. It also contains files pertaining to Potemkin's term of duty in the Russian-Turkish war of 1768-1774, the Novorossiisk expedition, Potemkin's General Term of Duty (1783), the General Term of Duty of the Yekaterinoslavl Army (1788), and the General Term of Duty of the Combined Army. Documents outside the collection's main time period, dating after 1792 as well as between 1655-1760, make the collection unique.

The extensive collection includes journals of outgoing documents, official documents, and decrees of Catherine II, the Senate, the Synod, and the Military Collegium. Issues covered include conditions and inspection results of the armed forces; composition of military detachments; transportation and provisions for the troops; military personnel records; management of state gunpowder and cloth mills; and armed forces stationed in the Novorossiisk, Azov, and Astrakhan provinces.

The great majority of documents are handwritten manuscripts but there are also printed and cartographic materials. The catalogue contains documents in French,
German, Polish, Greek, Italian, Arabic, Farsi, Armenian, and Georgian. Files are catalogued in the numerical order of the printed catalogue, mostly chronologically, with some deviations.

Yale has in its holdings the complete set of 253 reels and a finding guide. Scholars can consult these sources in the Microtext Reading Room, which is in the basement of Sterling Memorial Library. A published guide to the collection is in the Microtext Reading Room under the call number Z2519 +P36 2000 (LC).

Sterling Library's hours of operation
LOCATION: SML, Microform (Non-Circulating)
CALL NUMBER: Film B18265