Philosophers' ships

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Oberbürgermeister Haken

The philosophers' ships or philosopher's steamboats (Russian: Философский пароход) were steamships that transported intellectuals expelled from Soviet Russia in 1922.

The main load was handled by two German ships, the Oberbürgermeister Haken and the Preussen, which transported more than 200 expelled Russian intellectuals and their families in September and November 1922 from Petrograd (modern-day Saint Petersburg) to the seaport of Stettin in Germany (modern-day Szczecin in Poland). Three detention lists included 228 people, 32 of them students.

Later in 1922, other intellectuals were transported by train to Riga in Latvia or by ship from Odessa to Istanbul.

Among the expelled[edit]


  • Catherine Baird. Revolution from Within: The Ymca in Russia’s Ascension to Freedom from Bolshevik Tyranny, 2013, ISBN 9780986219900 (with bio List of the Deported)
  • Lesley Chamberlain, Lenin's Private War: The Voyage of the Philosophy Steamer and the Exile of the Intelligentsia, St Martin's Press, 2007; ISBN 0-312-36730-9
  • V. G. Makarov, V. S. Khristoforov: «Passazhiry ‹filosofskogo parokhoda›. (Sud’by intelligencii, repressirovannoj letom-osen’ju 1922g.)». // Voprosy filosofii 7 (600) 2003, p. 113-137 [contains a list with biographical information on Russian intellectuals exiled 1922-1923].