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Alexandra Ribush

My brother was born on 7th November 1933, October Revolution Day [7]. He was named after V.I. Lenin, since our parents were Bolsheviks. My father was a member of the Communist Party, and he was a very sincere and convinced communist. My mother wasn't a party member, but she adhered to the same views. All official newspapers and other party publications were read in our family.
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In 1921 his son Abram took him away to England. Grandpa and Abram had problems with the Bolshevist power: they were against the Bolsheviks so they had to escape abroad to avoid a possible massacre.
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Grandpa's elder son Lazar died in 1924, before I was born, but I was on friendly terms with his wife Tsilya. She died a long time ago and her daughters Malvina and Sarah remain my closest relatives. When Malvina was born in 1919, the Civil War [5] was at its height and it wasn't possible to send telegrams. It was only allowed to send telegrams that informed someone about someone's arrival. So the relatives received the following telegram about her birth: 'Malvina Lazarevna arrived successfully'.
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Eva Ryzhevskaya

In 1917 the revolution broke out in Russia [see Russian Revolution of 1917] [6]. My parents were rejoicing on that occasion. Before the revolution Jews had very restricted rights. There was a pale of settlement. Jews weren't permitted to live anywhere they wanted; besides there was a quota of admission to institutions of higher education. My parents were poor, so they didn't lose anything when the Soviet regime was established. There was nothing to sequestrate from them. My parents were happy that their children would be able to study and do what appealed to them.
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Arnold Fabrikant

His sister, Yekaterina Yampolskaya, was a revolutionary: in 1918 she worked in Lenin's secretarial office; she knew him personally. She was married to the chief editor of the Pravda newspaper [The paper of the Communist Party of the USSR]. She was arrested in 1937 as the wife of an 'enemy of the people' [19]. She was kept in camps for 20 years, released in 1957 and rehabilitated later [see Rehabilitation in the Soviet Union] [20]. She received an apartment in Moscow.
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My grandparents had two daughters: Klara and Bronislava. Klara, the older one, died young before the Revolution, and Bronislava survived.
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I remember my grandmother as a very thin and quiet woman, always busy with the housework. She cooked delicious food. I don't know where Grandmother Gitlia studied, but she had some education.
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Before the Revolution he lived in Switzerland and they said he owned a health center there. He dealt in politics and came to Russia to 'do the revolution'. He didn't have a family.
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My grandfather was ill and bound to bed when revolutionary navies came to his home and took away everything of value. Miraculously of all family jewelry a golden brooch in the form of a safety pin with a square head with a few small diamonds in it remained with them. This was my mother's favorite and only piece of jewelry.
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My grandparents were wealthy, but lost everything after the October Revolution [see Russian Revolution of 1917] [1].
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Anna Ivankovitser

Before and after the Revolution of 1917 Petliura's [2] gangs attacked towns and villages. They didn't kill people, but robbed them. They would beat or threaten people, but in all this time they didn't kill anybody in Polonoye. This town was lucky in this respect, because Jews were killed in other towns. Polonoye was a small town with a population of 1,000 at most. Before the war, Jews had no conflicts with the Ukrainian and Polish population. In 1941 the entire Jewish population was exterminated. Since then there have been no Jews in this village. The Revolution of 1917 had no impact on the way of life in Polonoye. There were communists among the poorer people in Polonoye, but they didn't make any difference in the general pace of life of the town.
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My mother's sisters moved to America before the Revolution of 1917. Esther was the first to go. She was a communist and was involved in revolutionary activities. The police department became aware of this. My grandfather had acquaintances there and was told confidentially that they were going to arrest Esther. My grandfather told Esther to escape to America. She left in 1915. Esther married a Jewish man in America. I don't remember his name. He was an engineer. Esther was very good at embroidery. We had a few collars that she embroidered. But she didn't like housework and her husband did everything about the house, which he didn't mind at all. They had two daughters and a son named Erik. I don't remember their daughters' names. They lived in California.
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My father's older brother lived in Poland. He settled down in Cracow when it still belonged to tsarist Russia. After the Revolution of 1917 [1] Poland became a foreign country. I didn't know my uncle, because during the Soviet era it was not safe to keep in touch with relatives who were living abroad. He may have perished during the war.
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Basya Chaika

My name is Basya. I was born in 1926 in Kiev. I was named after my
grandmother - Basya Gorenstein, who died before the Revolution, that is,
before 1917.
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