Duty of the Whole People

I. Sautin, The National Census — a Duty of the Whole People. December 23-31, 1938


Original Source: Bol’shevik, No. 23-24 (December 1938),

To register all these changes in our country and build statistical accounts, a second all-union census was conducted in January 1937.

But it was disrupted by contemptible enemies of the people — Trotsky-Bukharinite spies and traitors to the motherland, having slipped at that time into the leadership of the Central Directory of People’s Economic Accounting.

The census of 1937 was conducted with violations of government instructions, with the grossest violations of elementary principles of statistical science.

Enemies of the people set themselves the goal of distorting the real number of the population. Without the government’s permission, they printed the wrecker’s “Booklet for Census-takers,” in which, against instructions, census-takers were ordered to strike out from their census forms all citizens (tabulated in preliminary filling of census lists), not spending the night of 5-6 January at home.

As a result, the census of 1937 dropped many such people (not spending the night of 5-6 January at home), who certainly could not have been counted anywhere else: railroad workers working night shifts, those carrying out official duties, those traveling to a market, or into the forest for wood, and many others. Deliberately, no provision was made for the census to count whole categories of the population, e.g.: all those traveling by cart, by automobile, or in freight trains; those out on the steppe; people waiting for trains at small stations and sidings, etc. Thus, the 1937 census was done without a full count of the population.

The plan for processing census data was also marked by wrecking. In order to distort the class structure of the population, enemies of the people treated family members of Collective farmers, working in household plots, as private farmers. Collective farmers, working in industrial trades at their collective farms (carpenters, cobblers, blacksmiths, etc.), were treated as “hired workers of the collective farms.” There were cases when invalids and the aged were treated as non-working elements of the population. The wreckers tried to distort the distribution of population by occupation; according to their idea, the calculations should not include new occupations, characteristic of our socialist economy, for example chairmen of collective farms. Thus they “found” in the USSR such “professions” as servant and governess, which had long ceased to exist on Soviet territory.

The unmasking of the hostile work in the 1937 census obliges Soviet and Party organizations to take special political responsibility for the upcoming census.

Keep in mind, that a masked enemy can try by any “news” or provocateur’s distortions to sow doubts about the census. The duty of every Soviet citizen is to watch vigilantly for all enemy machinations, unmask them in time, and cut them out at the root.


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