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Register of the Felikss Cielens Papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content Note
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Felikss Cielens papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1913-1960
    Collection number: 66003
    Creator: Cielens, Felikss
    Extent: 5 manuscript boxes (2 linear feet)
    Repository: Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace
    Stanford, California 94305-6010
    Abstract: Memoirs, writings, correspondence, memoranda, and printed matter, relating to Latvian foreign relations and political conditions.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Languages: Latvian, and English.

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Felikss Cielens papers, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information



    Increments may have been received since this finding aid was prepared. Please check Stanford University's online catalog Socrates at http://library.stanford.edu/webcat  to find the full extent of the collection.

    Biographical Note

    1888 Born, Latvia
    1905 Participates in revolution against Czarist rule
    1906-1909 Studies law in St. Petersburg
    1910 Emigrates to Paris
    1919 Returns to Latvia, and is elected to the Saeima (parliament) as a member of the Latvian Social Democratic Party
    1926-1928 Latvian Minister of Foreign Affairs
    1933-1934 Latvian Minister to France, Spain, and Portugal
    1934-1940 Lives in exile in Paris
    1940 Returns to Latvia
    1944 Flees occupied Latvia to Sweden
    1961-1964 Laikmetu maiņā, memoirs, published in three volumes
    1964 Died, Stockholm

    Scope and Content Note

    Acquired in 1966, with increments received in 1979 and 1984, the Felikss Cielens papers in the Hoover Institution Archives comprise a small but comprehensive set of materials relating to the career of an important twentieth-century Latvian political figure. Nearly all of Cielens's extant writings, both literary and political, are to be found in the collection, as are documents pertaining to his tenure as Latvian Minister of Foreign Affairs in the 1920s.
    Like many Latvians, Cielens was swept up in the turbulent events of the 1905 revolution against Czarist rule in the Russian empire, which then included the Baltic peoples. The failure of the revolution, and the subsequent severe repression by Czarist forces, drove many activists into exile, including Cielens. Although a Social Democrat and an opponent of the Bolsheviks, Cielens came into personal contact with many leading personalities of the Russian revolutionary milieu, including Lenin. His impressions of this time are contained in his memoirs and a lengthy unpublished novel set in the period of the 1917 Russian Revolution and its aftermath; both works are to be found in the SPEECHES AND WRITINGS series.
    A strong advocate of Latvian independence, Cielens rose to prominence in the Social Democratic party in the new Latvia of the 1920s, and served as the country's Minister of Foreign Affairs at the end of that decade. The FOREIGN MINISTRY FILE series contains materials relating to Cielens's ministerial activities; there are also press interviews from this time in the INTERVIEWS AND PRESS CONFERENCES series.
    During 1933-1934, Cielens served as Latvian Minister to France. There is unfortunately little record of this period in the collection. The emergence of the authoritarian Ulmanis regime in Latvia in the mid-1930s, and the loss of Latvian independence in 1940, effectively ended Cielens's political career within Latvia. Leaving occupied Latvia for Sweden in 1944, Cielens continued to be active both as a writer and as an émigré spokesman. Immediately upon his arrival in Sweden, he wrote a number of reports on the situation in occupied Latvia for the American embassy in Stockholm. These form a separate series in the collection.
    Cielens's interests included Latvian literature, and he published a number of studies on the subject, including a short work on Latvian drama that is included among the papers. He wrote prolifically until the end of his life, and the collection assembles the articles he wrote for Latvian émigré publications, principally in Sweden. The majority of the documents in the collection are in Latvian, but there are also materials in French, English, Swedish, and Russian.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the repository's online public access catalog.


    France--Foreign relations--Latvia.
    Latvia--Foreign relations.
    Latvia--Foreign relations--France.
    Latvia--Politics and government.