The Finland station

August 5 2015

Финля́ндский вокза́л, Finlyandsky vokzal, was the station in Petrograd serving Helsinki and Vyborg to which Lenin returned to Russia via Finland from exile in Switzerland on April 3 1917 (Gregorian), after the February Revolution and ahead of the October Revolution.

It was owned and operated by Finnish railways until early 1918, when the last train, carrying station personnel and equipment, as well as some of the last Finns escaping revolutionary Russia, left for Finland.

Later, the Finns gave it to Russia and the Russians gave them property in Finland, including the Alexander Theatre in Helsinki.

It was the equivalent of Mehrabad International Airport in Tehran into which Khomeini flew from Paris in a chartered plane on February 1 1979.

During the July Days, Lenin had to flee to Finland for safety to avoid arrest. He returned again, disguised as a railway worker, on August 9.

Edmund Wilson’s book To the Finland Station (1940) was a study of revolutionary thought.

Leaving the station in St Petersburg, March 27 2011:

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