An estimated 90,000 marched on March 8 and clashed with police. Over the next couple days their numbers grew until they burned down the police stations on the 10th. On March 11 the Petrograd garrison was sent forth to stop what was becoming an uprising. But it backfired on the 12th when 150,000 soldiers defected and joined the revolt.
On March 15 Czar Nicholas II abdicated and his brother Michael refused the crown, ending the rule of the czarist autocracy. And in Switzerland, the leader of the Bolshevik revolutionary party left his exile and headed home, for the the revolution needed a leader. Vladimir Lenin was on the way.