Chaim Grienblatt with his wife

Chaim Grienblatt with his wife

This picture is the last picture of my maternal great grandfather, Khaim Grienblatt and maternal great grandmother, whose name I don’t know (they are sitting).

The picture was taken in evacuation in the Urals, in winter of 1941-1942 not long before they died.

They are wearing valenki, great grandmother is wearing a head kerchief, both have warm mittens. All in all, they do not differ by appearance from local citizens. I do not know the name of the woman, standing behind their backs.

I know that my great grandfather Khaim Grienblatt and great grandmother were born in Belarus, not far from Orsha [Orsha is a town in Vitebsk region, located in the North-Eastern part of the Belarus Republic, 700 km to the South of St. Petersburg].

Their children were also born there: sons Iosif, Boris and Solomon and daughters Gitl, Feiga and Frida. Gitl Khaimovna Grienblatt, my maternal grandmother, was born in 1893.

Grandmother's parents lived in Orsha almost all their lives. I was told that they were religious people observing traditions: kosher, Sabbath, celebrating traditional holidays and attending the synagogue.

In 1941 when the Great Patriotic War broke out, they managed to evacuate to the Sverdlovsk region in the Urals, at the very last moment before the Germans arrived [Sverdlovsk region was set up in 1934 in the Middle Urals, about 2,000 km to the East of St. Petersburg;

in 1930-1940s large defense, machine-construction and metallurgical plants were build there, which played a very important part during the years of the Great Patriotic War].

They were provided lodging in a village. They could not work in the kolkhoz according to their age and health, that is why they lived very poorly. They died of starvation as a matter of fact in 1942.

They were buried there, in a common rural cemetery.

Open this page