The Czech and Slovak Legion in Siberia, 1917–1922


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About the Book

During World War I, a specialized Russian battalion comprised of ethnic Czechs and Czech and Slovak prisoners of war—the Legion—became a pawn in an international game of power and deceit. The Legion’s detour through Siberia became the greatest human interest story of the war, chronicled weekly in the New York Times and New York Herald. More than half of the Legion’s troops lost their lives as the evacuation of Czech and Slovak POWs through Vladivostok precipitated the murder of the Russian royal family and forced the Legion to act as protectors of the Russian treasury and the Trans-Siberian Railway while the White and Red armies battled. For political purposes, tales of the Legion’s odyssey have been buried or expunged. This volume offers the seminal account of this hidden yet epic journey, shedding light on a fascinating but forgotten facet of World War I.

About the Author(s)

Joan McGuire Mohr has served as a contributing historian at the Czech and Slovak National Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and lectured at the Iparmu˝vészeti Múzeum (Museum of Applied Arts) in Budapest, Hungary. She leads lecture tours into Hungary and Transylvania.

Bibliographic Details

Joan McGuire Mohr
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 264
Bibliographic Info: 52 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6571-2
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8851-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii

Preface      1

Prologue      7

Chapter 1:      11

Chapter 2:      29

Chapter 3:      44

Chapter 4:      66

Chapter 5:      82

Chapter 6:      97

Chapter 7:      113

Chapter 8:      127

Chapter 9:      139

Chapter 10:      150

Chapter 11:      164

Chapter 12:      176

Chapter 13:      191

Chapter 14:      206

Epilogue      217

Chapter Notes      227

Bibliography      245

Index      249

Book Reviews & Awards

“a good read…recommended”—Choice; “Historian Mohr, who specializes in Slavic studies, spent many years unearthing personal stories and writings, government documents, and photos to shed light on the true significance of the Czech and Slovak Legion. Writing in a lively narrative style, she reveals details of the forced migration of some of the legion members, intertwining history with contemporary efforts of legion members descendants to discover the truth. The book is illustrated with a wealth of b&w photos”—Reference & Research Book News.