revolutionary conspiracy background. The circumstances
demanded that during investigation materials of the case should not
be made known and no person could be allowed to visit those
arrested. In this respect it was not possible to make an exception
in Davison's case. The ease was quite notorious at the time in
Petrograd, and Davison's wife could not be in ignorance of this
The Marquess Curzon of Kedleston to Mr. Hodgson (Moscow).
Sir, Foreign Office, January 3, 1922.
In September, 1920, my attention was drawn to a report from
Mrs. Barbara Davison, formerly resident at 77, Kronversky
Prospekt, Petrograd, regarding the death of her husband, Charles
Frederick Davison, civil engineer. It appeared that Mr. Davison was
arrested on the 19th September, 1919, at Petrograd by the Extraordinary Commission and taken to the prison at 25, Shpalernaya
where he was kept prisoner for four months, although no charge
had been brought against him. No reply was given by the
competent authorities to Mrs. Davison's repeated enquiries on his
behalf, and finally, on the night of the 16th-17th January, 1920, Mr.
Davison was shot under exceptionally brutal circumstances. No
reason for his execution was given at the time, although Mrs. Davison
and her friends, on various occasions, attempted to obtain the
2. These facts were communicated by me to M. Chicherin by
telegram en clair on the 2nd October, 1920, and I at the same time
requested him to institute immediate enquiries with a view to
justice being done and full compensation paid.
3. M. Chicherin's reply was received on the 26th December, 1920,
He stated that Mr. Davison owed his arrest and execution to Sir
Paul Dukes's activities, whereby he became involved in the so-called
fuel scandal of Benislavsky and Sorgenfrey in Petrograd. He
added that Mr. Davison was condemned to death on the 15th
January, 1920, at a session of the Presidium of the Extraordinary
Commission of Petrograd in the presence of five juridically competent
members, in accordance with regulations issued on the 2nd
November, 1918, for Extraordinary Commissions and with the
decree of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee of the 22nd
June, 1919, articles 2, 4, and 6.
4. It has since been ascertained from Sir Paul Dukes that he
had no dealings with Mr. Davison, nor indeed knew of his existence.
It would appear, therefore, that the execution of Mr. Davison was
nothing less than the judicial murder of a British subject under
revolting circumstances upon trumped-up evidence.
5. I should be glad, therefore, if you would draw M. Chicherin's
attention to his statement of the case and formally deny that Mr.