1991 Obit of Henry Shapiro, Longtime UPI Moscow Reporter


(From the April 9, 1991, New York Times):

Henry Shapiro, a longtime Moscow correspondent for United Press International before he retired in 1973, died Sept. 4, 1991, at Meritor Hospital in Madison, Wis. He was 84 years old and lived in Madison.

He died of a stroke, his family said.

Mr. Shapiro joined the news agency, then United Press, in 1937. Fluent in Russian, he was sent to the Soviet Union. The following year he married Ludmilla Nikitina, the daughter of a University of Moscow professor. Except for a period in 1954 and 1955, when he was a Nieman fellow at Harvard, he reported continuously until 1973 and became dean of Western press corps in Moscow. From 1973 to 1979 he was the Kemper K. Knapp Professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Journalism.

Reported Purge Trials

He was born in Romania, grew up in New York and after graduating from City College and Harvard Law School, went to Moscow in 1933 to study comparative law. He was with the Reuters news agency for three years before switching to United Press. He wrote a book, "The U.S.S.R. After Stalin," published in 1954.

From Moscow Mr. Shapiro covered Stalin's purge trials in the late 1930s, the events leading up to Soviet-German collaboration at the outset of World War II, the ordeals of the war and the eventual victory of the Allies.

After the war he reported on the Cold War, and in 1953 he reported Stalin's death before the Soviet press published the news. He interviewed Nikita S. Khrushchev several times, and UPI officials said he had been called on by the Soviet leader for advice on American public opinion.

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