Alexander Ribush's permission to serve as a medical attendant

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This is a hand-written certificate in Russian, written in an ornate copy-book, which is difficult to read due to the old age and decay of the document. This certificate proves that my maternal grandfather, Alexander Ribush, held the position of a physician. The certificate also gave my grandfather permission to serve as a medical attendant in a military regiment. This document was issued in Vitebsk in 1918.

My maternal grandfather's name was Ziska Iosilev Ribush. In everyday life we called him Alexander Iosifovich. I don't know when and where he was born. As a teenager he was sent to study at a cantonist college. He graduated from the military cantonist college and was assigned to serve as a corps man in a regiment. Later he obtained medical education through military medical attendants' courses. There is a certificate, dated 1881, which proves that he graduated from the medical attendants' courses and was a certified regiment medical attendant. Upon finishing his military service he received a reference which stated that he was distinguished by excellent medical knowledge, showed effort in taking care of the patients and was recommended to the position of a zemsky [provincial] medical attendant. This certificate was dated 8th March 1883 and was signed by the officer of the 25th artillery brigade.

After allocation from the regiment he worked as a zemsky medical attendant. I don't know all his life's circumstances but I do know that as of 1905 grandpa lived and worked in Pskov. He was very famous in Pskov and had very extensive medical practice. He treated patients at home and also visited them. I still have a 'certificate', which proves that he was a district zemsky physician for the municipal medical station. The certificate was issued by the Pskov District Zemsky Council in 1918. My grandpa was remembered even in the 1950s, 25 years after his death. I overheard a conversation between two women in a Leningrad tram. They were scolding physicians who didn't treat patients properly and suddenly one woman told the other, 'We had a medical attendant in Pskov in the old times, his name was Ribush - and he was a real doctor, better than today's professors'.

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Interviewee: Alexandra Ribush
Inna Gimila
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St. Petersburg, Russia


Alexander Ribush
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before WW II
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