Bauman, Nikolai

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bauman, Nikolai Ernestovich


(party pseudonyms Grach, Poletaev, Sarafskii, Sorokin). Born May 17 (29), 1873, in Kazan; died Oct. 18 (31), 1905, in Moscow. Professional revolutionary, active in the Bolshevik Party. Born into the family of a carpenter-craftsman. Graduated from the Kazan Veterinary Institute (1895).

Bauman began his revolutionary activity in the 1890’s in Kazan. He was a member of the St. Petersburg League of the Struggle for the Emancipation of the Working Class in 1896–97. Bauman was arrested in March 1897. In 1899, after 22 months of solitary confinement in the Peter and Paul Fortress, he was deported for four years to the city of Orlov (now Khalturin), Viatka Province. He escaped in October 1899, emigrated to Switzerland, joined the Union of Russian Social Democrats Abroad, sided with the Liberation of Labor group, and actively fought against economism.

In 1900, Bauman became one of the closest and most active aides of V. I. Lenin in founding the newspaper Iskra and was its first illegal agent; he was in charge of shipping the newspaper to Russia and established contacts with local social democratic organizations. In December 1901 the editorial board of Iskra sent him to Moscow, where he became a member of the Moscow committee of the RSDLP. In early 1902, Bauman traveled to Kiev and then to Voronezh in order to establish contacts with Iskra supporters. He was arrested on the way to Moscow and incarcerated in the Luk’ianovka Prison (Kiev). On Aug. 18, 1902, he escaped with ten other Iskra supporters who had been arrested earlier and in September made his way abroad.

Bauman was a delegate to the Second Congress of the RSDLP (1903) from the Moscow party organization. At this congress he showed himself a steadfast follower of Lenin. In December 1903 he went to Russia. He was the leader of the Moscow party organization of the Bolsheviks and at the same time of the Northern Bureau of the Central Committee of the RSDLP; he set up an underground printing shop in his apartment. In June 1904, Bauman was arrested and incarcerated in the Taganka Prison in Moscow. After his release in October 1905, he was active in the Moscow party committee. On Oct. 18, 1905, during a demonstration organized by the Moscow committee of the RSDLP, he was brutally killed by a Black Hundred member who was an agent of the Okh-ranka (tsarist secret police).

Bauman’s funeral on Oct. 20 turned into a grandiose political demonstration attended by 300,000 people; this demonstration played a great role in preparing the Moscow proletariat for the December armed uprising. The newspaper Proletarii published an obituary of N. E. Bauman on Oct. 25, 1905 (number 24), written by V. I. Lenin. “Eternal memory,” Lenin wrote, “to the fighter in the ranks of the Russian social democratic proletariat! Eternal memory to the revolutionary who died in the first days of the victorious revolution! Let the honor that the people in revolt rendered to his remains be a guarantee of the complete victory of the uprising and of the complete destruction of accursed tsarism!” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 12, p. 37). In Moscow a district, square, street, higher technical school, and other institutions are named after Bauman.


Lenin, V. I. “N. E. Bauman.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 12.
Novoselov, M. A. N. E. Bauman, 1873–1905. Moscow, 1955.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.