Turkestan Sappers Uprising of 1912

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Turkestan Sappers’ Uprising of 1912


an uprising of soldiers of the 1st and 2nd sapper battalions of the Turkestan Military District, stationed in the Troitsk Camps near Tashkent. The uprising was planned by the Tashkent Interparty Military Organization, which was composed of Social Democrats and Social Revolutionaries from several garrisons in the district. The most active members of the organization were sappers, the majority of whom were former workers.

The plans for the uprising were disclosed by a traitor, whereupon the soldiers decided to expedite the uprising and involve other military units and workers of the Turkestan Krai. The uprising began on the evening of July 1 (14), when three officers were killed in a brief skirmish. The rebels then armed themselves and, led by musicians playing the “Marseillaise, ” left for the camp of nearby rifle regiments. Squads of machine gun trainees at the camp opened fire on the sappers when they arrived, and four regiments surrounded the rebels. By the morning of July 2 (15), the uprising had been suppressed. Of the participants brought to trial, 14 were hanged and 220 were sentenced to penal servitude or put in disciplinary companies.

V. I. Lenin considered the Turkestan Sappers’ Uprising, together with rebellions in the navy, as evidence of the birth of revolutionary enthusiasm in Russia.


Lenin, V. I. “Vosstaniia v armii i vo flote.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 22.
Svirskii, S. la. Revoliutsionnoe dvizhenie v tsarskoi armii v Turkes-tane v gody novogo revoliutsionnogo pod”ema (1910–1914). Tashkent, 1960.
Tutundzhan, T. A. 50 let vosstaniia turkestanskikh saperov. Tashkent, 1962.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.