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1960: First Moscow visit and aftermath
Monty's first visit to Moscow in June 1960 was preceded by a visit to the Soviet Trade Delegation in London and liaison with the Commercial Counsellor at the British Embassy in Moscow. The latter included a series of telegraphic cables -- no emails or faxes in those days.
At the Patent Office Library, a Mr Zubov explained local procedures "with great patience." Monty then visited Mr L. Inozemtsev of the State Committee for Inventions, with whom he went on to deal for several years concerning exchange of Soviet documents for Derwent publications -- there was particular interest in matters Japanese -- and the establishment of UK licenses for Soviet inventions. (Mr Inozemtsev visited London and Monty was invited back at least once to meet the plenary State Committee for Inventions and Discoveries. Relations may have been cold in the early 1960s at the military and security levels, but civilian technocrats seemed more friendly and co-operative.)
other main appointment was at the
Ministry of Trade & Foreign Affairs to
discuss Derwent 's publications being imported into the USSR and the
possibility of translating Russian publications. Back in London, Monty
straight back to send one copy of each of his
publications and to place on record
are most anxious to hear your
decision concerning the rights to translate the Soviet Bulletin on
& Inventions and assure you that in the event of these rights
granted, wewould produce a work of high standard and would ensure
background to this was that Robert Maxwell's Pergamon
Press had been granted the contract from January 1959, but had actually
produced almost nothing. Monty plugged away at
and visited the Soviet Trade Delegation in London,with the
outcome expressed in a letter to Moscow of 2nd December 1960:-
A follow-up of 14th December enclosed "photostat copies of two recent letters showing some of the chaos caused by the Pergamon Press....from one letter it can be seen that the translations provided by Pergamon are not of a very high standard, and from the other it will be noted that the delays by them in publication are stated to be due to the Russian Patent Office where in fact this is not so. We have heard from many booksellers of complaints about thedelays caused by Pergamon Press and sincerely hope that you will reach an early decision on this subject."
Matters then moved fast. By 3rd January 1961, Monty had received and accepted an offer to pay an annual sum of £270 for the translation rights. He was prepared to visit Moscow to finalise details, but by mid-January had received a draft contract that obviated the need. Details were finalised via a meeting with Leonov in London and the contract was signed in mid-February, by which time the first issues of the new year had reached Derwent for translation into English.
There was now a hitch, however.