Editors Note: We're blogging through We Didn't Start the Fire by Billy Joel.
Ioseb Besarionis Dze Jugashvili was born on the 18th of December, 1878. He was born in the Russian country of Georgia, not be confused with America’s state of Georgia. Jugashvili is known more commonly as Joseph Stalin. Ioseb was the Russian form of the name Joseph, and Stalin means ‘Man of Steel’. He changed his name to make it sound more terrifying.
As a youth, Stalin was beaten by his father, who was an alcoholic. He was also once hit and run over by a runaway carriage, which left him with a stiff shoulder for the rest of his life.
Stalin wrote poetry for a good share of his life. One piece that I found very interesting was ‘To The Moon’, which can be read here.
A lot of Stalin’s early life was spent in gangs, which sent him to jail and even had him exiled to Siberia several times, from which he always escaped.
Stalin became the dictator of the Soviet Union in the late 1920s. He was a cruel and harsh leader, and had many people exiled or executed.
Joseph Stalin died of cerebral hemorrhage on March 5, 1953.