Il’in-Zhenevskii, Aleksandr Fedorovich
Born Nov. 16 (28), 1894, in St. Petersburg; died in 1941 in Leningrad. Soviet state and party figure, publicist, one of the organizers of the chess movement in the USSR, Master of Sport (1925). Became a member of the Communist Party in 1912. The son of an archdeacon.
In 1913, Il’in-Zhenevskii emigrated and began studies at the University of Geneva. In 1914 he won the chess championship of Geneva. Returning to Russia in 1914, he worked on the newspaper Pravda and the journal Voprosy strakhovaniia (Problems of Insurance). In 1917 he carried on party work in the Baltic Fleet. He was an editor of the Bolshevik newspapers Volna, Golos pravdy, and Soldatskaia pravda and a member of the Petrograd Soviet. During the October days of 1917, he was a commissar of the Military Revolutionary Committee; he subsequently headed a detachment of sailors sent to aid the insurrectionists in Moscow. From late 1917 he was a commissar of the Main Military Judicial Administration, head of the Political Administration of the Petrograd Military District, chairman of an inspection commission of the Higher Military Inspection, and commissar of the Main Administration of Vsevobuch (Universal Military Training). He was an initiator of the first championship chess competition of Soviet Russia (1920). In 1921 he was engaged in diplomatic work in Latvia. In 1922 he worked in the Central Committee of the RCP (Bolshevik). From 1923 on, he edited a number of newspapers and journals. From 1924 to 1930 he was deputy director of the Leningrad Oblast Istpart (Commission on Party History). He participated in the First Moscow International Chess Tournament (1925), at which he defeated the world champion Capablanca. From 1930 he was engaged in diplomatic and party work. He died during the blockade of Leningrad.