Ilya Wolston

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Ilya Elliott Wolston was an American citizen who entered the U.S. Army in World War II and became a military intelligence officer. Shortly thereafter Wolston began reporting to the Soviet intelligence. Wolston relayed to Soviet intelligence matters relating to the organization, curriculum, and personnel of the Army's intelligence school at Fort Ritchie, Maryland.[1]

After the war Wolston worked for the KGB network run by his uncle, Jack Soble and included Soble's brother and Wolston's other uncle Robert Soblen. Boris Morros wrote in his autobiography that Jack Soble told him that Ilya, whose cover name Morros remembered as Slava, had done work for the Russians in Alaska.

There is a Slava in a 1945 message (Venona 325 KGB Moscow to New York, 5 April 1945); it clearly is not Wolston but someone connected to the Rosenberg spy ring. This also suggests that by that time Wolston had a different cover name.


Ilya Wolston is referenced in the following Venona project decrypts:

  • 777–781 KGB New York to Moscow, 26 May 1943
  • 893 KGB New York to Moscow, 10 June 1943
  • 325 Moscow to New York, 5 April 1945. (It is not clear that the Glory in the 1945 message is "Glory"/Wolston as in 1943).


  • Boris Morros, My Ten Years as a Counter-Spy, London: Werner Laurie (1959).
  • John Earl Haynes and Harvey Klehr, Venona: Decoding Soviet Espionage in America, New Haven: Yale University Press, (1999), pgs. 275–276.