By Alexander Loikov
The State Historical Museum of Russia has provided the Belarusian State Museum of Great Patriotic War History with copies of unique photos for the Winners exhibition, which recently opened in Minsk.
Academic Secretary Galina Babusenko, of the Belarusian museum, tells us that the exhibition features a copy of the Order of the British Empire, as presented by British King George VI to Belarusian-born soldier Vasily Sokolovsky. Others include the telegram sent to Moscow following the Nazis’ surrender, and the USSR Marshal Ivan Konev’s journal entries from early May 1945. Another provides a visual record of Potsdam’s seizure. Ms. Babusenko explains, “About 200 — of the 142,000 documents — are personal records of the Victory Parade participants; these show that Belarusians took part in military action and participated in the parade.”
Among the exhibits on show are some personal belongings of Soviet Union Hero Vasily Kozlov. Meanwhile, a service coat, ammunition and documents owned by Grodno-born Alexey Antonov (a General and an active participant in the Victory Parade’s organisation) are on display, alongside a copy of the Flag of Victory, military standards and trophy flags.
The Victory Parade crowned the war and was among the brightest events of the 20th century. Winners ends the Victory Parade of June 24th, 1945 project — which honours the memory of WW2 veterans. Sadly, their number falls annually.