Scope and Content
Title: Andrei Terent'evich Bel'chenko papers
Date (inclusive): 1898-1962
Collection Number: 99049
Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Library and Archives
Language of Material: Mainly in Russian
34 microfilm reels
(5.1 Linear Feet)
Abstract: Diaries, speeches and writings, correspondence, consular reports, printed matter, and photographs, relating to Russian and
Portuguese relations with China, political conditions in China, and Russian émigré affairs.
Bel'chenko, Andreĭ Terent'evich, 1873-1958
Physical Location: Hoover Institution Library & Archives
The collection is open for research; materials must be requested at least two business days in advance of intended use.
For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Library & Archives.
[Identification of item], Andrei Terent'evich Bel'chenko Papers, [Box no., Folder no. or title], Hoover Institution Library
- A. B.
- A. F. G.
- Az-Buki [Azbuki]
- Iu Chzhi U-tsai [Iu-chizhi u-tsai]
- Liubitel' puteshestvii
- Odin iz russkikh
- Poltavskii Kazak [Poltavskii Kozak]
Andrew T. Bel'tchenko, 1873 - 1958
Andrew Bel'tchenko was born in the village of Kozlovka, Bobrovskii uezd, Voronezhskaiia guberniia, Russia, on 29 October 1873.
He graduated from St. Petersburg University with a degree in Oriental philology in 1897. Entering the Foreign Ministry, he
was assigned to the Imperial Russian Legation at Peking as a student interpreter in 1899, where he witnessed the Boxer Rebellion
and participated in the defense of the diplomatic quarter against the Boxers. Steadily climbing the career ladder, he was
commissioned Acting Consul at Foochow in 1901, Vice-Consul at Hankow in 1902, Assistant Secretary of the Russian Legation
at Peking in 1903, Consul at Niuchuang (Manchuria) in 1906, Consul at Foochow in 1910, Consul at Canton in 1912, and finally,
Consul-General at Hankow in 1915.
Andrew T. Bel'tchenko
More than a ministerial functionary, he was an avid student of China throughout his life. In 1912 he translated (into English)
I. S. Brunnert's
The Present Day Political Organization of China (Shanghai, 1912), and it was his intimate acquaintance with the politics and institutions of that land that saved him from
the fate of other Russian diplomats when the Chinese government ceased to recognize their credentials. In 1920 he became advisor
to the Chinese government in Hankow on Russian affairs (there was a small but influential Russian colony in Hankow with commercial
enterprises), and from 1923 until his departure from China in 1947 he served as Portuguese Consul-General in Hankow, retaining
his responsibilities for the Russian colony as well.
The primary value of the collection lies in Bel'tchenko's reports, diaries, scrapbooks, and collected materials on Chinese
politics for this period, particularly for 1927, when Hankow became the Nationalist capital. The materials include clippings
and issues of rare newspapers, such as the
Hankow Herald, North China Daily News, Central China Post, and others, many of which may no longer be extant. In addition, there are significant materials on the Russian and other
foreign concessions in Hankow, the Japanese occupation of that region, and Russian émigrés in Hankow and Shanghai, including
correspondence, clippings, registration books, legal papers, photographs and other matter.
Following his departure from China, Bel'tchenko went briefly to Paris before settling in San Francisco, where he helped other
Russian refugees from China as head of the Obshchestvo pomoshchi russkim na Tubabao and assisted in the work of the Museum
of Russian Culture. He died in San Francisco on 1 February 1958.
Scope and Content
This collection consists of the papers of the Russian and Portuguese Consul in Hankow, China. The main emphasis is on this
city and its surroundings in the period 1918-1946, but there is information on more general developments in China, Russia
(the Soviet Union) and the United States over the entire period from 1898 to 1962.
Where possible, the arrangement reflects the original order established by Bel'chenko and respects many of the categories
defined by A. S. Loukashkin, who processed the collection upon its acquisition by the Museum of Russian Culture.
A Chinese politics series has been created to encompass materials not readily absorbed into the usual series. This series
contains materials relating to Bel'chenko's service as Portuguese Consul in Hankow as well as his continued performance of
consular and representative functions with respect to the Russian colony in Hankow and to the Russian émigré diplomatic corps.
It includes his consular reports, correspondence, and Bel'chenko's published and unpublished summaries and reports on Chinese
political developments, with supporting materials (mainly clippings from the
Central China Post,
Journal de Shanghai,
North China Daily News and other newspapers).
Detailed processing and preservation microfilming for these materials were made possible by a generous grant from the National
Endowment for the Humanities and by matching funds from the Hoover Institution and Museum of Russian Culture. The grant also
provides depositing a microfilm copy in the Hoover Institution Library & Archives. The original materials and copyright to
them (with some exceptions) are the property of the Museum of Russian Culture, San Francisco. A transfer table indicating
corresponding box and reel numbers is available at the Hoover Institution Library & Archives.
The Hoover Institution assumes all responsibility for notifying users that they must comply with the copyright law of the
United States (Title 17 United States Code) and Hoover Rules for the Use and Reproduction of Archival Materials.
Subjects and Indexing Terms
Russians -- United States
China -- History -- Republic, 1912-1949
Russia -- Foreign relations -- China
China -- Foreign relations -- Russia
Portugal -- Foreign relations -- China
China -- Foreign relations -- Portugal