THE NIKOLA PASIC FOUNDATION

History buffs say that Serbian people had three great statesmen – Ilija Garašanin, Jovan Ristić and Nikola Pašić.

Life and work of Nikola Pašić (Zaječar 1845 – Belgrade 1926) is linked to reign of both Serbian dynasties, the Obrenović’s and the Karađorđević’s. He first appeared in public life in 1878, when he was elected deputy to the National Assembly. Then follows founding of the Radical Party in 1881, leading of the Timok Rebellion in 1883, death sentence, exile and pardon in 1889. After King Milan abdicated, Pašić won the elections, took the power in Serbia and formed his first Cabinet as the Prime Minister in 1891. In his career he was also the Mayor of Belgrade (1896-1897), diplomat – Ambassador in St. Petersburg (1893-1894), negotiator on the Paris Peace Conference after the World War I. During the reign of the Obrenović’s, the Radical Party, including Pašić, as its leader, was mostly in the opposition and only rarely in power, while during the reign of the Karađorđević’s, they were in power almost throughout the period and only sporadically in the opposition. Upon his death, Pašić was compared with the greatest men of the European History. Historical distance since his death in 1926, has long surpassed political connotations and represents an excellent basis for a scientific context.

All of the above mentioned was the basis to establish the “Nikola Pašić” Foundation in Zaječar, following the citizens’ initiative, on March 25th, 1992. By the Decree of the Ministry of Culture of July 16th, 1993, its establishing was approved, as a cultural institution. The idea behind establishing of the Foundation was to adequately mark the 150th anniversary of Pašić’s birth and in an dignified manner.

In the course of 1995, the Foundation initiated and sponsored events, such as making a feature length documentary film “Nikola Pašić”, an international scientific conference “Nikola Pašić – Life and Work”, organizing an exhibition “Nikola Pašić, Trail of Documents”, erecting a monument to Nikola Pašić in the City centre, premier of a theatre play “Agony – Nikola Pašić’s Dreams”, as well as many other covering events. The Foundation was ceremonially opened on November 23rd 1996, marking 70th anniversary of Pašić’s death. Presently, the Foundation consists of a permanent exhibition and a dedicated space, which is used for exhibitions, lectures, book promotions, poetry evenings and other similar events. The permanent exhibition, dedicated to Pašić’s life and work, was set up in cooperation with the Historical Museum of Serbia.

By obtaining the premises, conditions were created for organizing a permanent institution for research of characters and events from the national history. In this, the following should be emphasized:

  • Collecting and systematizing historical materials: memorial objects, archive documents and forming a specialized library.
  • Publishing activity. Presently, the following books were published in the “Nikola Pašić” Edition of Books:
  1. Đorđe Stanković, Nikola Pašić, Allies and Creation of Yugoslavia, Zaječar 1995 (second expanded edition),
  2. Miladin Milošević, Serbia and Greece 1914-1918, from the History of Diplomatic Relations, Zaječar, 1997,
  3. Miladin Milošević, Bora Dimitrijević, Echoes of Pašić’s Life, Zaječar, 2000,
  4. Tatjana Nedin, Nikola Pašić – Bibliography, Zaječar, 2002,
  5. Miladin Milošević, Bora Dimitrijević, Nikola Pašić – to Prime Minister, Zaječar, 2005.
  • Annual lectures:
  1. Dr Latinka Perović, Young Nikola Pašić, December 6th, 1993
  2. Dr Andrej Šemjakin, Nikola Pašić and Russia, October 8th, 1997
  3. Dr Andrej Šemjakin, Nikola Pašić and the Radical Party, December 10th, 2001
  4. Prof. Dr Ljubodrag Dimić, Serbia and Yugoslavia, October 25th, 2002
  5. Dr Petko Hristov, Nikola Pašić in Emigration, in Sofia, September 23rd, 2003
  6. Prof. Dr Dragoljub Živojinović, Pašić and the Issue of Montenegro, June 24th, 2005
  7. Dr Dubravka Stojanović, Political Culture in “The Golden Age of Serbian Democracy 1903-1914”, October 19th, 2006.
  8. Prof. Dr Miroslav Jovanović, Nikola Pašić’s Rusophilia, December 25th, 2007
  • Presentations of other publishers’ historical books
  • Historical exhibitions.

Dejan Sotirović,
Secretary of the “Nikola Pašić” Foundation

This post is also available in SRPSKI.