Emil Potievskiy with his siblings

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  • Photo taken in:
    Malin
    Country name at time of photo:
    USSR
    Country name today:
    Ukraine

From left to right: my father Emil Potievskiy, his sister Rachel Glozman (nee Potievskaya) and my father's brothers Motl and Gedali, photographed on Rachel's birthday in Malin in the early 1920s.

In the early 1920s my grandfather on my father's side, Iosele, went to America with his older son whose name I don't know. In the US my grandfather and my father's older brother happened to pass by a demonstration of workers where police used weapons. Many people were killed including my grandfather Iosele and his son.

Besides my father’s brother that perished in America my father had three other brothers and two sisters. The boys finished cheder and studied at the Jewish primary school. The girls also got primary education.

Gedali, the oldest, born in 1888, was a high-skilled cabinetmaker. He earned well and always had enough money. Gedali enjoyed throwing money in restaurants and for women. He married a very pretty Jewish girl, Reizl, from another town: she was a fair-haired, blue-eyed girl and had ‘a character of an angel,’ as they say. She was an orphan and her uncle that raised her didn’t quite want to let her marry Gedali who had a spoiled reputation. However, Gedali managed to have Reizl marry him.

Shortly after the wedding Gedali returned to his former way of life – he went out and drank a lot and was not faithful to Reizl. Reizl kept silent and cried at night. Her relatives talked to Gedali and insisted on divorce and compensation enough for Reizl to buy an apartment. They divorced.

Sometime afterward Gedali married a strong-willed woman – Ida. She tamed her husband’s violent temper and he lived a quiet life with her under her dictation. Gedali didn’t have any children. During the war Gedali was in evacuation somewhere in the taiga in the North. He died in Malin three years after the war.

Rachel, coming next after Gedali, was born in 1890. She became a very good dressmaker. During the Soviet power in the 1930s she had high official clients in Kiev. She went to Kiev where she made fashionable clothing for them and stayed there for several months in a row. Rachel married Efim Glozman before the Great Patriotic War. Rachel and Efim didn’t have any children. Rachel died in evacuation in 1940s.

Motl, born after my father in 1895, graduated from the Agricultural Institute in Odessa and became an agronomist. He got married. During the Great Patriotic War Motl was recruited to the army. He didn’t return from the war. I have no information about his wife or children – we were out of touch with them.

Interview details

Interviewee: Tsylia Shapiro
Interviewer:
Zhanna Litinskaya
Month of interview:
December
Year of interview:
2002
Lvov, Ukraine

KEY PERSON

Emil Potievskiy
Jewish name:
Emil
Year of birth:
1893
City of birth:
Malin
Country name at time of birth:
Russia
Year of death:
1936
City of death:
Kiev
Country of death:
USSR
Died:
before WW II
Occupation
before WW II:
Manual laborer

Other Person

Rachel Glozman
Jewish name:
Rachel
Year of birth:
1890
City of birth:
Malin
Country name at time of birth:
Russia
Year of death:
1943
City of death:
Ural
Country of death:
USSR
Died where:
Ural
Occupation
before WW II:
self-employed craftsman in non-elite
  • Previous family name: 
    Potievskaya
    Year of changing: 
    1935
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage

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