The Manhoff Archives, Part Two

Hawaii Intelligence Digest, 21 March 2017, 20:30 hrs, UTC, Post #149.


Accessed on 21 March 2017, 20:30 hrs.

Please click link to read the full article and to view Manhoff’s photos and films.


Thanks to Radio Liberty and Radio Free Europe, the nearly lost Manhoff photo and film archives have been found and restored.  Major Martin Manhoff served as Army attache at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow during the early 1950 and was able to film scenes of daily life in the Russian capital shortly after World War II.  Manhoff also filmed public reaction to the death of Soviet leader Josef Stalin and the general living conditions of Moscovites during the early 1950s.  In part II, we see how Moscow rebuilt itself after World War II, the towering cranes and crumbling facades, massive displays of patriotism, and the long lines waiting for food.

Although Manhoff and his family couldn’t travel outside of Moscow, there were times when Manhoff, in the course of his military duties, was able to venture beyond the city itself.  According to Radio Liberty and Radio Free Europe, these rare trips outside Moscow opened a new world for Manhoff, who found Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) a refreshing change from the drabness of Moscow:

“Most of the Manhoffs’ time in the Soviet Union was spent in Moscow. But Martin and Jan also traveled to other parts of the country. On at least three occasions in 1952 and 1953 they visited Leningrad, the northern second city that today bears its original name, St. Petersburg. “We visited Leningrad, and thru what remains of the gloriously rich past in the form of country palaces and structures within the city, we felt we had received a feeling of old St. Petersburg.”

“They traveled farther afield: to Murmansk, the Arctic Sea port that was home to the Soviet Northern Fleet; to Kyiv, the capital of what was then known as the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic; to Yalta, the famed Crimean resort that hosted the 1945 conference where Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin decided Europe’s postwar fate.

And they made at least two trips aboard the Trans-Siberian Railroad: to the central Siberian region of Khakassia, and to the distant city of Khabarovsk, on the Chinese border.”

I’ll present parts III and IV in the month of April


A fascinating photo and film archive of Moscow at the start of the “Cold War”.  The comments from Martin’s spouse, Jan, are most illuminating.  After you view these chapters, you may come away with a deeper understanding of what motivates The Russian Federation today.  The films, photos, and comments given in family letters are remarkably objective, giving an indication of just how badly Russia (then the Soviet Union) was damaged in World War II.

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Until next time,

Russell Roberts

Hawaii Intelligence Digest

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