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Museum Collection

An Autograph of the Far East Writer

The books by Alexander Grachov, a Don Cossack, a well-known Far East writer, with autographs, are kept in the collection of the M.A.Sholokhov Museum-Reserve.

The book “Secrets of Red Lake” (Moscow, “Molodaya Gvardiya” publisher, 1954.–328 pages) bears an autograph by A.M.Grachov: “To the great countryman, dear Mikhail Alexandrovich Sholokhov, with love and deepest devotion, from the author, a Cossack of Merkulovsky Village. A.Grachov. Khabarovsk. December, 9, 1954.”

The book “Forest Whispers. Tale of Nature” (Moscow, “Mysl” publisher, 1970. – 176 pages) bears the following:

“Dear Mikhail Alexandrovich!

Let this book remind you of the Don Cossack from Merkulovsky Village, of the man, who “was unfaithful” to the Don-Father and went to build Komsomolsk on the Amur from the first stake, to walk far and wide the taiga and then to write a book about this wonderful country.

For a good memory about the Ussuri fish soup of 1967, May.

A.Grachov.
Khabarovsk, 20.10.70.”

In his youth Alexander Grachov came to Sholokhov for advice in writing, later they met several times in Vyoshenskaya, and in 1966 they met in Khabarovsk, where Sholokhov stayed for short on his way to Japan.

Alexander Matveyevich Grachov was born in 1912, in Merkulovsky Village, Voysko Donskoye Region (now Sholokhov District the Rostov Region). He had four years of village school, then went to school for young peasants in Stanitsa Meshkovskaya. In 1930 he took a course in Novocherkassk cavalry school, but in 1932 he was demobilized from the Army on health grounds and went to build Komsomolsk-on-Amur. There, in the Far East, he became engaged in journalism and writing.

The first book by Alexander Grachov was published in Khabarovsk: in his story “Secrets of Red Lake” (1948) he told about the adventures of a group of geologists in the mountains of Sikhote-Alin. Of the same genre were the stories “The Fall of Tisima-Retto” (1956), “Through the March Snow” (1973). In 1965, in Moscow, the novel “The First Wood Cutting” was published, which was dedicated to the first builders of Komsomolsk-on-Amur. The idea of the novel had been entertained by him for many years.

The writer was utterly fond of the Far East nature and depicted it on the pages of his natural history books ”The Lodge by the Burukan Rapids” (1962), “Forest Whispers” (1970) and others. His last book “Travelling to the Country of Youth” was published in 1974.

Galina Govorukhina