This photo of my mother, Esther Shulyakovskaya, was taken in 1916 in Slutsk.
My mother was born in 1888. Mom grew up in a village and she was used to the countryside labor. Mom also had only elementary education. She was taught by a village teacher at home. She didn’t go to cheder, there weren’t any in that village. She was proposed to my father as a wife. Most likely it was her parents’ idea and it was a custom in those times. Mom was the eldest daughter in her family. She was married off at the age of 17. Mom never told me about her wedding. I was her fourth kid when she was 24 years old. She was married off because there were seven daughters in the family. Before her marriage she worked as a milkmaid in the kolkhoz, later she kept her household. During the war in 1941-1944 she was with me in evacuation in Sverdlovsk. After the war Mom lived with us, she was sick a lot of the time and died in 1952.
My parents got married in 1905. I don’t know what kind of wedding they had. They lived in Slutsk at first. They had four kids: Yefim, Lev, Nina and me, Raisa.