The Garšviai Book Smuggling Society was an illegal society of Lithuanian book smugglers during the Lithuanian press ban enacted in 1864. It was one of the oldest book smuggler societies. Active from around 1883 to 1895, it was also one of the longest operating societies. It was based in at the home of Kazys Ūdra in the Garšviai village near Naujamiestis, Panevėžys. Led by Ūdra and Jurgis Bielinis, the society organized a network of trusted associates who would purchase the publications in East Prussia, smuggle them across the Prussia–Russia border, and distribute them in central Lithuania (mainly area around Panevėžys and Biržai). In total, historian Antanas Tyla registered 54 people as members or collaborators. The society smuggled both books and periodicals, delivering them to subscriber

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  • The Garšviai Book Smuggling Society was an illegal society of Lithuanian book smugglers during the Lithuanian press ban enacted in 1864. It was one of the oldest book smuggler societies. Active from around 1883 to 1895, it was also one of the longest operating societies. It was based in at the home of Kazys Ūdra in the Garšviai village near Naujamiestis, Panevėžys. Led by Ūdra and Jurgis Bielinis, the society organized a network of trusted associates who would purchase the publications in East Prussia, smuggle them across the Prussia–Russia border, and distribute them in central Lithuania (mainly area around Panevėžys and Biržai). In total, historian Antanas Tyla registered 54 people as members or collaborators. The society smuggled both books and periodicals, delivering them to subscribers, though they were particularly dangerous – they needed to be smuggled frequently and they were deemed to be anti-Tsarist political texts bringing much stricter sentences than smuggling of "innocent" texts with religious prayers or agricultural advice. For almost a decade, the society avoided more serious legal troubles. In February and April 1894, the society suffered financial losses due to confiscated property but managed to avoid a wider police investigation. In November 1894 and April 1895, two members of the society – Antanas Bružas and Andrius Bielinis – were arrested and sentenced to time in prison and exile, but the police did not uncover their connections to the Garšviai Society. The society unraveled when the police arrested Ūdra and found his notebook with names and addresses of his associates in June 1895. After a wide investigation, six men were put on trial while Jurgis Bielinis evaded capture. Ūdra and two others received two years in prison and five years in exile. Individual members of the society continued book smuggling, but the loss of the organized society disrupted the spread of the ideas of the Lithuanian National Revival in central Lithuania. (en)
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  • Location of Garšviai in present-day Lithuania (en)
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  • The Garšviai Book Smuggling Society was an illegal society of Lithuanian book smugglers during the Lithuanian press ban enacted in 1864. It was one of the oldest book smuggler societies. Active from around 1883 to 1895, it was also one of the longest operating societies. It was based in at the home of Kazys Ūdra in the Garšviai village near Naujamiestis, Panevėžys. Led by Ūdra and Jurgis Bielinis, the society organized a network of trusted associates who would purchase the publications in East Prussia, smuggle them across the Prussia–Russia border, and distribute them in central Lithuania (mainly area around Panevėžys and Biržai). In total, historian Antanas Tyla registered 54 people as members or collaborators. The society smuggled both books and periodicals, delivering them to subscriber (en)
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  • Garšviai Book Smuggling Society (en)
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