National Geographic : 2004 Jul
FROM OUR ARCHIVES Flashback CORBIS THE SUN Eclipsed On June 19, 1936, as Muscovites waited for a total solar eclipse to darken Russian skies, some donned protective viewers designed to filter out retina burning rays. Others seemed more interested in Pravda'snews about one of Russia's native sons than in the sun overhead. Maksim Gorky, beloved novelist and playwright, had died the day before. Despite his stature as the "father of Soviet literature" and head of the Soviet Writers Union, Gorky became disillusioned with Stalin's leadership. Suffering from tuberculosis and heart problems, Aleksey Maksimovich Peshkov (Gorky, meaning "bitter one" was his pen name) died at 68. He may well have been helped along by a fatal dose of poison: Rumors persist that Stalin ordered Gorky's murder. - Margaret G. Zackowitz WEBSITE EXCLUSIVE You can access the Flash back photo archives and send electronic greeting cards at nationalgeographic .com/magazine/0407. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC (ISSN0027 9358)ISPUBUSHED MONTHLY BYTHENATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY, 114517THST.NW,WASHINGTON DC200364688. 34.00AYEARFORU.S .DEVERY,6.00PERSINGLECOPY(INCLUDES POSTAGE ANDHANDLING) PERIODICALS POSTAGEIDATWASHINGTON DC.ANDATADDITIONAL MAILINGOFFICES. POSTMASTER: SENDADDRESSCHANGES TONATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC, POBOX63002.TAMPA, FL33663-3002 INCANADA. AGREEMENT NUMBER 03429792.RETURN UNDEUVERABLE CANADIAN ADDRESSES TONATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC, POBOX4412STN.A.TORONTO. ONTARIO M5W3W2.