Kaunas (Kovno in Polish) is in Lithuania. At that time, it was part of Russia.

In his letter to Ala (dated September 12, 1940), Leo says, “I had letters from Rysia Krygier (Kaunas, USSR) that he needed a visa …”

In his letter to Ruth Schechter (dated October 27, 1940), Leo says, “I also had a cable from Richard Krygier. He is in Kaunas, the former Lithuanian capital, hoped to go to Caracas, but didn’t have enough money.”

The last few lines of the letter below are written by Roma, Krygier’s wife.

As recorded in Leo’s student records at the London School of Economics (as summarized by Jim Thomas), on January 25, 1940, a postcard arrived at LSE:

I am a friend of Mr. LEONID HURWICZ who has been preparing for a doctorship in your school. I know that he is not in England now, but I cannot find out his actual address. As I have news for him from his parents and family in Warsaw, I shall be very much obliged to you for giving me his address if you know it. Please write by airmail on my address given further.
I am, Sir,
Very truly yours, RICHARD KRYGIER

LSE replied to “Richard Krygier, c/o N. Kanas, Kaunas, Maironio 6/5, Lithuania”:

Dear Sir,
I have your postcard but unfortunately we have no idea of the whereabouts of
Mr. Leonid Hurwicz. We have had no news of him since July last, when it was understood he was proceeding to France and Switzerland for the long vacation in order to collect material relevant to the subject of his research.

Apparently, they did hear from Leo in the next few months, since the postcard was forwarded to him on March 25, 1940.

LSE information comes from “The Postgraduate File of Leonid Hurwicz at the London School of Economics 1938 – 1939: A Summary,” p. 6, by Jim Thomas, Research Associate, STICERD, London School of Economics, dated May 26, 2009, emailed to me on Jan. 4, 2019. 

Wikipedia tells us that Krygier was a classmate of Leo’s at the University of Warsaw:

Henry Richard Krygier OBE (1917–1986), was a Polish-born Jewish Australian anti-communist publisher and journalist, and a founder of Quadrant magazine.


He was born in 1917 in Warsaw, of Jewish parents, and as a law student was active in student politics at the Józef Piłsudski (Warsaw) University.

The article also tells us that his quest for a visa was successful:

In 1939, he and his wife, Roma, escaped to Kaunas, Lithuania, where they obtained Japanese transit visas. They reached Sydney, via Vladivostok, Japan and Shanghai, in 1941. In Sydney, he was active in Polish journalism and import-export businesses.


Notes towards translation:

Kochany Lolku, Chciałem już do ciebie pisać do Chicago, gdy nadeszła twoje kartka z Barcelony.
“Dear Leo, I wanted to write to you in Chicago even though your card comes from Barcelona.”

Leonid Hurwicz Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University, Box 23

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