USSR Passport for Mother and Son issued in Berlin 1934

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USSR passport berlin 1934

This USSR passport was issued in Berlin in 1934 and was valid until 1947. Marie and her son, who is seen in the passport but crossed out, seem to have lived in Nazi Germany for quite a long time. The passport shows several renewals, and the last known location was Heidelberg, Germany in 1946. The USSR consular renewals ended in 1941 when all diplomatic missions were closed due to the war between Germany and USSR.

But at least Marie was still living in Germany. How does she have felt to live in the enemy country who broke the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and started the war with USSR in 1941 (Operation Barbarossa)? What happened to her son? At least we know he got his own passport as the entry on page fourteen indicates.

It is unlikely that Marie and her son belonged to the USSR diplomatic staff, as then they would have other documents. A diplomatic passport, maybe. Nowadays, we rarely find such documents.

USSR Passport for Mother and Son issued in Berlin 1934
Quite rare type!
USSR passport 1934
Mother & Son
USSR passport - Mother and Son - Berlin
Valid from 1934-1947
Residence permit stamp germany
Last entry is Heidelberg, Germany in 1946

As long as everything remained in limbo, Russian Berlin was a kind of third place where Russia could still meet with Bolshevik Russia on the other side of the border. In the Haus der Künste on Nollendorfplatz, the poets of Petersburg Symbolism met the shooting stars of Russian Futurism. Galerie Van Diemen on Boulevard Unter den Linden became a place where the exciting art of Kasimir Malevich or Marc Chagall could be admired for the first time in Germany. Berlin had a Russian newspaper landscape that could draw on the best forces of Russian journalism, political analysis, and literary criticism before 1917. One of them, Juli Aichenwald, tragically came under a tram and is buried in the cemetery of the Russian church in Tegel.

This world also included professional associations of doctors, engineers, and lawyers. Officers of the Russian army worked as taxi drivers, and ladies of the Petersburg Society designed models for the Berlin fashion houses to help out the fashionably more mediocre Berlin. There was also the Russian Berlin of the failed and those who had crashed into misery. They lived in the refugee homes on the Tempelhofer Feld and waited for the times to get better. The anti-Semitic Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion were circulating, as were those of the Russian Berlin, bringing all the dirt and poison of the early fascist Black Hundred to Germany – first to Munich, then to Berlin. Contact was established with the right wing of the people and the future Hitler Party. When this very party, the NSDAP, seized power in 1933, the Russian Berlin of the 1920s was over. The aged Simon Dubnow, Nestor of the history of Judaism, fled to Riga, where Germans murdered him in 1941. Vladimir Nabokov, who had lived in Berlin for more than a decade, Boris Pasternak’s parents and others left in 1937 at the latest.

The German war of annihilation against the Soviet Union soon produced an entirely different Russian Berlin: that of the “East Workers,” the forced laborers from the occupied territories. Thousands and thousands of them lived in camps scattered all over the city. They kept the town and its large factories going. They were the ones who had to move out after every Allied air raid to make destroyed tracks, bridges, and tunnels roadworthy again. In 1944, a Swiss journalist remarked that Berlin had never been as Russian as it was at those moments when masses of Soviet forced laborers were forced to restore the city’s bombed-out infrastructure.

The liberation from Nazi rule and the occupation of Berlin by the Allies marked the beginning of a new chapter that can still be clearly read in some places in the city: at the former officers’ school in Berlin-Karlshorst, for example, where the Germans signed the surrender. (Today it houses the German-Russian Museum), at the memorials in Berlin-Treptow and Berlin-Tiergarten, and the newly erected USSR embassy on Unter den Linden. The Soviet tanks in Leipziger Strasse and Potsdamer Platz on 17 June 1953 and the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961 also became symbols of the permanent cultural and military presence of the Russians in Berlin.

USSR passport berlin 1934

FAQ Passport History
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1. What are the earliest known examples of passports, and how have they evolved?

The word "passport" came up only in the mid 15th Century. Before that, such documents were safe conducts, recommendations or protection letters. On a practical aspect, the earliest passport I have seen was from the mid 16th Century. Read more...

2. Are there any notable historical figures or personalities whose passports are highly sought after by collectors?

Every collector is doing well to define his collection focus, and yes, there are collectors looking for Celebrity passports and travel documents of historical figures like Winston Churchill, Brothers Grimm, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Read more...

3. How did passport designs and security features change throughout different periods in history, and what impact did these changes have on forgery prevention?

"Passports" before the 18th Century had a pure functional character. Security features were, in the best case, a watermark and a wax seal. Forgery, back then, was not an issue like it is nowadays. Only from the 1980s on, security features became a thing. A state-of-the-art passport nowadays has dozens of security features - visible and invisible. Some are known only by the security document printer itself. Read more...

4. What are some of the rarest and most valuable historical passports that have ever been sold or auctioned?

Lou Gehrig, Victor Tsoi, Marilyn Monroe, James Joyce, and Albert Einstein when it comes to the most expensive ones. Read more...

5. How do diplomatic passports differ from regular passports, and what makes them significant to collectors?

Such documents were often held by officials in high ranks, like ambassadors, consuls or special envoys. Furthermore, these travel documents are often frequently traveled. Hence, they hold a tapestry of stamps or visas. Partly from unusual places.

6. Can you provide insights into the stories behind specific historical passports that offer unique insights into past travel and migration trends?

A passport tells the story of its bearer and these stories can be everything - surprising, sad, vivid. Isabella Bird and her travels (1831-1904) or Mary Kingsley, a fearless Lady explorer.

7. What role did passports play during significant historical events, such as wartime travel restrictions or international treaties?

During war, a passport could have been a matter of life or death. Especially, when we are looking into WWII and the Holocaust. And yes, during that time, passports and similar documents were often forged to escape and save lives. Example...

8. How has the emergence of digital passports and biometric identification impacted the world of passport collecting?

Current modern passports having now often a sparkling, flashy design. This has mainly two reasons. 1. Improved security and 2. Displaying a countries' heritage, icons, and important figures or achievements. I can fully understand that those modern documents are wanted, especially by younger collectors.

9. Are there any specialized collections of passports, such as those from a specific country, era, or distinguished individuals?

Yes, the University of Western Sidney Library has e.g. a passport collection of the former prime minister Hon Edward Gough Whitlam and his wife Margaret. They are all diplomatic passports and I had the pleasure to apprise them. I hold e.g. a collection of almost all types of the German Empire passports (only 2 types are still missing). Also, my East German passport collection is quite extensive with pretty rare passport types.

10. Where can passport collectors find reliable resources and reputable sellers to expand their collection and learn more about passport history?

A good start is eBay, Delcampe, flea markets, garage or estate sales. The more significant travel documents you probably find at the classic auction houses. Sometimes I also offer documents from my archive/collection. See offers... As you are already here, you surely found a great source on the topic 😉

Other great sources are: Scottish Passports, The Nansen passport, The secret lives of diplomatic couriers

11. Is vintage passport collecting legal? What are the regulations and considerations collectors should know when acquiring historical passports?

First, it's important to stress that each country has its own laws when it comes to passports. Collecting old vintage passports for historical or educational reasons is safe and legal, or at least tolerated. More details on the legal aspects are here...

Does this article spark your curiosity about passport collecting and the history of passports? With this valuable information, you have a good basis to start your own passport collection.

Question? Contact me...