In heart of the country Georgia is the small city of Gori. This could be any other city in the country, but it’s actually the birthplace of tavarish Joseph Stalin! This was something I didn’t know until I traveled here, that Stalin isn’t even Russian but is actually Georgian. While most of the former Soviet countries are too fond of Stalin, his statue still stands tall here in the center of Gori. Stalin was born here in in 1878 to some a poor family. The photo on the upper right supposedly shows the actual room he was born in. Stalin spent the first four years of his life here, and when he moved out he still remained in Georgia.
The highlight of visiting Stalin’s hometown is the fairly large museum dedicated to his life. The surrounding photos are all from the museum, including gifts in the upper right that were given to him by other countries. As I’m half Lebanese, I had to photograph the gift above that has Stalin’s portrait carved out of cedar wood. Below shows one of his desks that he once sat during World War II and the cold war, and on the lower right his famous bullet proof train.
I found the train to be the highlight of the museum, as you’re allowed to go inside and explore it yourself. Stalin actually refused to travel by aircraft, so he took this personal armored train all around the Soviet Union. You can imagine that some of those trips were incredibly long, so in many ways the train was his second home when outside of Moscow. It’s certainly quite luxurious and remains in excellent condition considering it is getting close to three quarters of a century old!