Irina Soboleva-Ginsburg with her father

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  • Photo taken in:
    Lvov
    Year when photo was taken:
    1960
    Country name at time of photo:
    USSR
    Country name today:
    Ukraine
My father Benjamin Ginsburg visiting me after he was released from the Gulag. This photo was taken in Lvov in 1960. We met in the park and asked a passerby to take pictures of us. My father was arrested in 1947. He was accused of being a German spy and sentenced to 20 years of imprisonment. He was sent to wood cutting facilities in the Gulag, but he was so old and worn out that the only work he could do was keeping records. He survived in the camp. He had a number on his arm that was the same as the number of the main character in Alexandr Solzhenitsyn's [13] novel, One day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. In the 1960s my father read this novel and was surprised because of the similarities. My father wrote to Solzhenitsyn and Solzhenitsyn visited him in the late 1960s. They spent a few days together recalling the horrors of what they had to go through. Solzhenitsyn told my father that he liked his letter. There was no nagging in his letter. There is a whole paragraph about my father in his book, The Gulag Archipelago. My father spent six years in the Gulag. He returned in 1954. When I found out where he was I sent him parcels and warm clothes. In 1954 my father returned from the Gulag. At first he couldn't find a job. Then he finally got employed at a scientific research institute in Moscow. He returned to his wife who had been waiting for him. My father was very grateful to Khrushchev for the rehabilitation of millions of innocent people. Once my father was at the election center where he saw Khrushchev. My father lifted his hat and bowed and Khrushchev nodded. Every now and then my father visited us in Lvov, and I made trips to Moscow to see him. He died in Moscow in 1969. He was buried near his parents' grave in the Jewish cemetery in Moscow.

Interview details

Interviewee: Irina Soboleva-Ginsburg
Interviewer:
Ella Orlikova
Month of interview:
July
Year of interview:
2002
Kiev, Ukraine

KEY PERSON

Irina Soboleva-Ginsburg
Year of birth:
1920
City of birth:
Moscow
Country name at time of birth:
Russia
Occupation
after WW II:
Artist
Family names
  • Previous family name: 
    Ginsburg
    Year of changing: 
    1949
    Reason for changing: 
    Marriage
  • Previous family name: 
    Soboleva
    Year of changing: 
    1994
    Reason for changing: 
    Assuming Jewish

Other Person

Benjamin Ginsburg
Jewish name:
Benjamin
Year of birth:
1897
City of birth:
Rogachev
Country name at time of birth:
Russia
Year of death:
1969
City of death:
Moscow
Country of death:
USSR
Died:
after WW II
Occupation
before WW II:
Journalist/ editor
after WW II:
Journalist/ editor

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