Editor's Note: The Crimean War (1854-1856) pitted Russia against her enemies at the time, England, France, and the Ottoman Empire. Apparently, desertion was a significant problem. Alexander II acceded to the throne in the midst of the Crimean War, which is the "present-day campaign" referred to in the decree. The recruit levy, or conscription process, required each community to supply so many men for each 1,000 members of the community.
On carrying out in 1855 the State recruit levy.
On account of losses from those bolting from Our Army in the present-day campaign, and deeming it essential
to bring Our Army up to a full complement, and repulse future attempts of the enemies, we command:
1. To carry out a general State levy, of 10 men from each 1,000 souls on the basis of an single, efficient decree, concurrently given to the Governing Senate, with the the following gubernias exempted: Pskov, Poltava, Chernigov, Khar'kov, Ekaterinoslav, Kherson, and Taurida.
2. To take from the Jews too, obligated to recruit conscription, on an equal footing with other social classes, for the general State levy, 10 men from each 1,000 souls.
3. Recruitment is to begin November 15 and conclude December 15, 1855.
(V.P.S.Z. Vol. XXX, No. 29,681 article 2).
* Promulgated by Senate decree October 10, 1855.