Nov/Dec 2018 Current Moscow Time: 16:40:46
19 November 2018

  The world’s biggest country, in a magazine. Since 1956.

The Children of 1917

The Children of 1917

In the summer of 2017, our troika of journalists traveled over 20,000 kilometers through Russia, Poland, Belarus and Finland in order to interview, photograph and film 22 amazing centenarians born in 1917. The project is now completed, and the film and book are now available to the public for streaming and purchase, respectively.

Meanwhile, we are also putting together a national US film and book tour. Watch this space for the latest information and get in touch if you would like to take part in helping promote or organize parts of the trip.



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If you backed the project on Kickstarter (at the Well-Wisher level or above) or have otherwise already purchased access, log in here.

October 3

By Paul E. Richardson

Our last stop on the Children of 1917 expedition was Finland, namely Tampere, the country's second largest city, where we met our final two heroes.

September 26

By Paul E. Richardson

Minsk is a city built for giants. And it is where we met a great soul, Maria Fyodorovna Rylik, who dedicated her life to teaching and her family.

September 20

By Paul E. Richardson

In which a retired Polish butcher explains how to live to be 100 and serenades us on his trumpet.

September 15

By Paul E. Richardson

On borders, learning Polish, the influence of culture, and the importance of a sense of humor.

September 11

By Paul E. Richardson

Two days in Irkutsk and one on Baikal, where we meet a soft-spoken mechanic and visit two very different tourist destinations.

September 8

By Paul E. Richardson

A second post from Krasnoyarsk, where we meet a poetry-writing, rug-weaving centenarian.

September 5

By Paul E. Richardson

Krasnoyarsk: knocking down stereotypes about Siberia and meeting a centenarian who will not be stopped.

September 2

By Paul E. Richardson

On the importance of coffee, academicians, a museum, a rooster, the harvesting of turf, and collectivization.

August 29

By Paul E. Richardson

A train ride, a war hero, sunflower fields, and the Loch Ness monster - just another day on the road for the Children of 1917 team.

August 27

By Paul E. Richardson

In which we move east to Samara, on the Volga River, and meet two centenarians living alone in very different ways.

August 24

By Paul E. Richardson

Photographic proof that all we have done on this trip is work, work, work... and nap.

August 23

By Paul E. Richardson

In which we are reminded of a 1924 decision about train schedules.

August 20

By Paul E. Richardson

Given the historical and personal realities she faced, Maria Konyayeva was very unlikely to live to 100 when she was born in 1917. And yet here she is.

August 17

By Paul E. Richardson

For all the romanticism commonly associated with world travel, the brutal reality is that it is often a very un-romantic undertaking to move the meat that is our bodies around in the world.

August 14

By Paul E. Richardson

Meet two more of our heroes whose long lives have surely been made possible by the care of their family and community.

August 10

By Paul E. Richardson

Any good expedition has its lighter moments. We have collected nine such scenes from recent days into a one-act play for your enjoyment.

August 5

By Paul E. Richardson

A second, more intensive phase of the Children of 1917 project has begun. Seatbelts fastened? Poyekhali!

July 28

By Nadya Grebennikova

It was with mixed feelings of bitter guilt and disgust, overcome with shameful and cowardly thoughts, that I joined the Children of 1917 project.

July 21

By Nadya Grebennikova

In which we accompany one of our heroines for her annual check up at the hospital.

July 14

By Nadya Grebennikova

The Children of 1917 expedition is far from over, yet we have uncovered the secret to long life and pinpointed the source of the Volga River.

July 8

By Nadya Grebennikova

Our producer, Misha, wanted us to row across the Volga River to visit 100-year-old Tatyana Semyonovna. He felt it would be epic and symbolic. We disagreed...

June 28

By Nadya Grebennikova

As told in two letters, two certificates and the autobiography of one centenarian, who turned 100 on June 16 and is the oldest person in her village of 100.

June 22

By Nadezhda Grebennikova

On the eve of our visit, the ambulance came for Maria Nikolayevna Ryabtsova: there was something wrong with her neck. The doctor examined her, but found nothing serious. He did an EKG and was surpr...

June 19

Since we will be asking lots of questions of our interview subjects, we thought it only fair to answering some questions about ourselves, so that readers can get to know us all a bit better.

June 14

By Nadezhda Grebennikova

The Children of 1917 Expedition is underway. We began in the most logical place: in St. Petersburg...

May 29

By Paul E. Richardson

So, what exactly have we been doing in the two months since the successful closure of our crowdfunding for this project?

March 16

By Paul E. Richardson

One hundred years ago, in 1917, Russia was wracked by revolution, famine, foreign war, and domestic unrest. And yet, throughout 1917, babies were born, lives were started. 

Thank you to our generous backers

Associate Producers

Alexei and Yuliya Bolshakov


Raiffeisen Bank Russia


Anonymous • Ricki Slattery Starrett


Harlan and Ellen Ratmeyer


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