Language of Materials
Conditions Governing Access
Extent1 collection (41 boxes (20 linear feet))
The biographical material includes personal documents, biographies, and newspaper clippings about Mykola Lebed and his wife, Daria (Hnatkivska).
The correspondence is organized into five sub-series. The first and second comprise family and personal letters. The third sub-series consists of letters arranged alphabetically by correspondent and includes letters from a number of well-known Ukrainian writers and literary scholars—Vasyl Barka, Vira Vovk, Stepan Oliinyk, Iurii Klen, Ihor Kostetskyi, Ivan Koshelivets, George S.N. Luckyj—and civic, community, religious, and political leaders—Iaroslav Haivas, Iurii Stefanyk, Bohdan Tsymbalistyi, Mykola Duzhyi, Vasyl Kuk, Volodymyr Stakhiv, and Iaroslav Stetsko, among many others. The fourth sub-series is made up entirely of letters to and from Rev. Ivan Hrynokh. The fifth sub-series includes letters arranged chronologically dating from 1936 to 1995.
The political material relating to Ukrainian revolutionary and nationalist movements is composed of various documents that Lebed obtained under the United States Freedom of Information Act, as well as from foreign governments. These include U.S. Department of State reports about Ukrainian nationalist organizations, as well as U.S. Embassy and British Embassy reports from Warsaw regarding Ukrainians in Poland during the period 1930 to 1944. Other material in this series pertains directly to the OUN, UHVR, and the UPA. It generally takes the form of documents, biographical material, and newspaper clippings. There is additional material about political prisoners and other political topics. Publications are made up of articles, books, and newspaper articles about autonomy and independence movements in Ukraine, as well as two scrapbooks that contain clippings about Mykola Lebed.
The notes consist of various miscellaneous jottings by Lebed (bibliographic citations, notes, addresses, etc.) on scraps of paper. The sixth series consists of photographs of Lebed and his family, OUN-UPA members, and others. There are also images of Ukrainian cultural, political, and religious monuments, such as Taras Shevchenko monuments, UPA cemeteries, and Ukrainian churches. Among the photographs is a series of images from the Inta concentration camp and another of a site of a mass massacre.
The final series consists of additional political materials originated from the archives of the Prolog Research Corporation. The materials represent a collection of documents and publications from the 1940-1952 period produced and used by the UHWR (Ukrainian Supreme Liberation Council), the UPA (Ukrainian Insurgent Army), and the OUN (Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists).
Biographical / Historical
Mykola Lebed was born on November 23, 1910, in Novi Strilyshcha, Bibrka county in Western Ukraine. In 1929 while attending school in Lviv, he helped organize the youth movement of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN). During the 1930s he served as a liaison between the OUN leadership, Ievhen Konovalets in Europe, and the organization's national executive in Western Ukraine. His liaison activities led to travel to Czechoslovakia, Germany, and Italy. Lebed was arrested in 1934 for complicity in planning the assassination of Gen. Bronislaw Pieracki, the Polish Minister of Internal Affairs, who was known for his repressive measures against Ukrainians. Sentenced to death, the sentence was later commuted to life imprisonment and Lebed remained in a Warsaw prison until September 1939. Forced to evacuate, Lebed managed to escape the prison column marching eastwards.
Lebed went to Krakow where he resumed active participation in the OUN. With the OUN split in 1940 into Bandera and Melnyk factions, Lebed joined the faction headed by Stepan Bandera. After Bandera and several of his deputies were arrested by the German Gestapo for establishing a provisional government and proclaiming the renewal of Ukrainian statehood in Lviv in June 1941, Lebed, as second deputy to Bandera, assumed leadership of OUN's anti-Nazi resistance in Ukraine. He played a key role in organizing the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), which by 1943 served as the military arm of the OUN(B). In 1943 Lebed relinquished the post of acting chief of OUN(B) and assumed the duties of OUN(B)'s chief of foreign affairs.
Lebed's wife, Daria (Hnatkivska), whom he married in a Warsaw prison while both were serving sentences as co-conspirators in the plotting of the assassination of Pieracki, was arrested in January 1944 for a second time by the Germans (the first time in Lviv in 1941). She and their daughter, Zoriana, were sent to a concentration camp in Ravensbruck, Germany, where they remained until fall 1944.
Towards the end of the Second World War, during the spring of 1944, the Ukrainian Supreme Liberation Council (UHVR) was being organized and was officially established on July 11-15, 1944, at a meeting in the Sambir region of Western Ukraine, uniting members of various political parties and liberation movements from both Western and Soviet Ukraine under an umbrella liberation movement with the purpose of combining forces to fight both Nazi and Soviet occupation. Lebed served as the external liaison officer and director of the information bureau of the UHVR. In this role, he was ordered to go abroad to gain Allied support for Ukraine's struggle for independence. The External Representation of the UHVR was established and Lebed appointed its general secretary. He made his way to Italy, and in 1947 left for West Germany.
In 1949 Lebed immigrated to the U.S. where he continued his activities on behalf of the External Representation of the UHVR. He also organized a group of scholars and researchers and set up the Prolog Research Corporation. He served as its president (1952 to 1975) and vice-president (1982-1985). He was also on the editorial board of Litpys UPA (from 1975). Lebed is the author of the book UPA: Ukrainska povstanska armiia (1946; 2nd ed. 1987), and numerous articles on the independence movement in Western Ukraine.
Lebed passed away on July 19, 1998. He is buried at St. Andrew's Ukrainian Orthodox Cemetery in South Bound Brook, New Jersey.
- I. Biographical material
- ___A. Mykola Lebed [Box 1]
- ___B. Other Lebed family members [Box 2]
- II. Correspondence
- ___A. Family correspondence [Box 2]
- ___B. Personal correspondence [Box 2]
- ___ C. Correspondence with individuals [Boxes 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9]
- ___D. Ivan Hrynoch letters [Box 10]
- ___E. Chronological correspondence [Boxes 11, 12, 13]
- III. Political material
- ___A. Government documents [Boxes 14 oversize, 15]
- ___B. Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists [Boxes 16, 17]
- ___C. Ukrainian Supreme Liberation Council [Box 18]
- ___D. Ukrainian Insurgent Army [Box 19]
- ___E. Litopys UPA [Box 20]
- ___F. Political prisoners [Box 21]
- ___G. All-Ukrainian Society of Political Prisoners and the Repressed [Box 22]
- ___H. Other political material [Boxes 23, 24]
- IV. Publications
- ___A. Articles and books [Boxes 25, 26]
- ___B. Newspaper clippings [Box 27]
- V. Notes and miscellaneous material [Box 28]
- VI. Photographs [Box 29]
- VII. Additional political materials
- ___A. Ukrainian Supreme Liberation Council (UHVR) [Box 30]
- ___B. Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) [Boxes 30, 31, 32, 33]
- ___C. Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) [Boxes 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39]
- ___D. Foreign materials [Box 40]
- ___E. Miscellaneous printed materials [Box 41]
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Additional materials donated by the Prolog Research Corporation, March 2009.
- Lebed, Mykola. Papers, 1930-1995: A Finding Aid.
- Ukrainian Research Institute
- EAD ID
Part of the Ukrainian Research Institute Repository
Special Collections at the Ukrainian Research Institute Library include primary sources documenting the history of Ukraine in the 20th century, and Ukrainian émigré social and cultural life in Europe, and the United States:
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Cambridge MA 02138 USA