Simon Grigol Firumov (1889-1937) lived in this house in 1927-1936. He was born in Surmalin district of Erevan governorate. He studied Law at the Economic Department of Moscow State University. Parallel to studies he became the member of RSDWP (The Russian Social Democratic Workers' Party) Internationalist faction which served the reason for his deportation from Moscow in 1911. For a certain period of time he served in the army. In 1918 he was the member of Georgian “Parliament” and in the same period was exiled from Tiflis three times for anti-Menshevik activities. In 1920 he held various positions working for the Republic of Armenia. In 1922-1925 he worked as a Trade Representative of Transcaucasian Socialist Federative Soviet Republic to Berlin and in 1925-27 as a Secretary of Plenipotentiary Representation of the USSR to Paris. Parallel to that, on the special assignment of Transcaucasian Regional Committee of RCP (B) (Russian Communist Party (Bolshevik), Firumov was actively engaged in the struggle against expatriates conducting their activities in Europe. In 1925 he became the Soviet Communist Party (B) member. In 1927 he returned to the USSR and worked in the Transcaucasian State Planning Commission. In 1936 he was appointed the Director of the Institute of Transportation Engineering. Soon he was arrested by the officials of People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs. In June 1937 he gave testimony in favour of the investigation. On 25 June, 1937 circuit session of Military Collegium of the USSR Supreme Court sentenced Firumov to death by shooting and the seizure of his private property charged with being the member of Trotskyite–Zinovievist wrecking, counter-revolutionary organization.
This building was presumably constructed in the first years of the XX century. It acquired special importance after it had become Lavrenti Beria’s residence. The building served as residence in 1931-1938 when Beria held the position of the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Georgia. Later Beria was moved to Moscow and appointed to the post of People’s Commissar of Internal Affairs of the USSR. Due to extraordinary significance of the building, all the documentation connected with it was made confidential and today it is even impossible to establish the name of the architect. Following the purge in 1930s, Machabeli Street was largely inhabited by people who had been actively engaged in the process of repressions.
In the beginning of the XX century this house accommodated German Consulate. In the 20s – there was the Office of the Representative of People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs of the USSR in Transcaucasia.
This building was inhabited by high ranking Soviet Party officials after the establishment of the Soviet power.
Ilarion Ilarion Talakahadze, who in 1921 was appointed the Chairman of the Revolutionary Tribunal, lived in the same house. In 1921-1922 he served as a Commissar of the Navy. In 1928-1931 he was the chairman of the Supreme Court. In 1937-1938, he worked as a prosecutor of the Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic, the member of the Extraordinary “Troika” at the Ministry of Internal Affairs. A lot of people had been deprived of life on his ruling.
In 1921-1925, Giorgi Alexandre Atarbegov (1891-1925) lived in this house. He was born in village Echmiadzin of Erevan governorate. He studied in progymnasiums of Baku and Erevan. He was involved in Marxist activities from an early age. In 1910 he entered the Law Department of Moscow University. In 1914, after his subsequent arrest he fled to Echmiadzin where he was hiding for two years but was being persecuted there too for being the Bolshevik Party member. Atarbegov departed to Aleksadropol where he was promulgating Bolshevism among soldiers. In 1918 he participated in Bolshevik manifestations and upheaval in Sukhumi. At the end of the same year, as the troops had been driven out of Abkhazia, he moved to North Caucasus where he became the Deputy Chairman of North-Caucasian Extraordinary Commission and its actual leader. He is known for being relentless and ruthless. Atarbegov personally took part in massive executions by firing squad. In 1919 he participated in the suppression of Astrakhan uprising where, according to some references, 1400 people were shot. For the atrocity he had revealed in Astrakhan uprising, Atarbegov was taken to Moscow under guard where All-Russian ExtraordinaryInvestigation Commission to Combat Counter-Revolution and Sabotagefound him guilty. However, as a result of the involvement of his influential friends - Stalin, Ordjonikidze and Kamo, Giorgi was acquitted and he stayed under Felix Dzerzhinski’s subordination.