The archive contains biographical information on people of any ethnicity or nationality who were killed or repressed in Bulgarian territory between 1944 and 1989. This is part of a larger research project, whose goal is to collect all preserved evidence about the recipients of political repressions as a result of totalitarian regimes in Southeast Europe during the 20th century. Our team is researching documentary information in publications such as the Dr. Kyril Drenikoff Collection at the Stanford Library, the Bulgarian State Gazette, multiple printed volumes on the subject (published by The Institute for the Study of the Recent Past, Vasil Stanilov’s Publishing House, The Institute for the Study of Bulgarian Immigration, independent monographs, etc.); public archives in various Bulgarian municipalities; inventories; and other sources in Bulgarian libraries and government institutions as well as private document collections, eye-witness accounts, and the archive of the Istina (Truth) Union. Read more about the project history, status and future goals.

Project History and Status

The Research Team has been collecting and publishing the names and biographies of all known victims of communism in Bulgaria since November 2009, when the virtual memorial Victims of Communism in Bulgarian Territory was created both in a Bulgarian and an English version. Ca. 23,000 names, both of Bulgarian and other nationalities, have been entered so far, with brief biographical information accompanying each name. The site also contains links to various bibliographic and educational materials on the subject of totalitarian regimes as well as video materials, including several documentary films and interviews with survivors of labor camps.

Future Goals

Our major objectives are to:
— Complete the records of all known individuals who lost their lives as a result of communist repressions.
— Record the names and biographies of labor camp and other repression survivors.
This will allow us to establish a relatively accurate historical estimate of the number of the victims of the regime (the preliminary accounts are imprecise and vary from 100,000 to 225,000, not including the members of the Turkish minority who were repressed during the 1980s; with them, the number will increase to ca. 500,000) as well as to attach authentic documents to each name, where available. These documents represent official records, e.g., death sentences and certificates, imprisonment and deportation orders, memoirs, letters, diaries, photographs, testimonials from family members and eye-witnesses, and other material.