Nikolay von Meck

Tchaikovsky Research
Nikolay von Meck (1863-1929)

Nephew of the composer by marriage (b. 28 April/10 May 1863 in Moscow; d. 24 May 1929 in Moscow), born Nikolay Karlovich von Meck (Николай Карлович фон Мекк).

Nikolay was the sixth child of Karl von Meck (1821–1876), and his wife Nadezhda (b. Frolovskaya, 1831–1894), who was Tchaikovsky's benefactress. He became president of the board of the Moscow-Kazan Railway, and from 1919 he worked for the People's Commissariat of Communications.

On 11/23 January 1884 he married Tchaikovsky's niece Anna Davydova (1864–1942) and they had five children: Kira (1885–1969); Mark (1890–1918); Galina (1891–1985); Attal (1894–1916); and Lyutsella (1896–1933). In 1903 they adopted another daughter: Yelena (b. Moyseyeva, 1897–1926).

On 5 September 1928, Nikolay von Meck was arrested by the State Secret Police (OGPU) on false charges of sabotage, in connection with the so-called "Shakhty affair". He was executed on 23 May 1929, aged 66.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

One letter from Tchaikovsky to Nikolay von Meck has survived, dating from 1882:

18 letters from Nikolay von Meck to the composer, dating from 1882 to 1891, are preserved in the Tchaikovsky State Memorial Musical Museum-Reserve at Klin (a4, Nos. 2418–2435).

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