Susanna Sirota’s grandmother and aunt Etia Ghivertz

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  • Photo taken in:
    Priluki
    Year when photo was taken:
    1890
    Country name at time of photo:
    Russia, pre 1917
    Country name today:
    Ukraine

My grandmother, my mother's mother, whose first name is unknown, her surname was Ghivertz, with her daughter Etia who died in her infancy. This photo was taken in Priluki in 1890.

My mother, Anna Sirota, nee Ghivertz, born in 1892, was an orphan and had no dowry, although her father Nathan Ghivertz lived in Priluki. I remember him. He was a fine looking, old man with a long beard, very handsome. When I saw him he was about 70 years old. They said before moving to Priluki he lived in the village of Ivanivtsi near Priluki. I don’t know how he earned his living there. He probably owned an inn or a shop. They say that at that time, in the 1900s, Nathan was wealthy and respectable. In the 1910s, probably trying to escape from pogroms, my grandfather and his family moved to Priluki. I don’t know what he was doing there. 

His first wife, my grandmother, died at childbirth, giving birth to her third baby, my mother. I don’t even know my grandmother’s name. It is known that she died before she turned 30. She was beautiful and kind. 

My mother didn’t like to recall her childhood. Probably, it was difficult. Her brother Isaac, born in 1887, and her sister Rosa, born in 1889, had Ukrainian baby-sitters, who taught them to speak Ukrainian and sang Ukrainian songs to them. I don’t know my grandfather’s second wife’s name. They had two more children, two girls, whose names I don’t know either. My grandfather’s children from his first marriage didn’t like their stepmother and played tricks on her. I don’t remember any details since the family didn’t talk about it. It resulted in a scandal. My grandfather ordered his older son Isaac to leave the house. Sister Rosa and my mother Anna stood up for their brother. They left the house as well.

Interview details

Interviewee: Susanna Sirota
Interviewer:
Ella Orlikova
Month of interview:
August
Year of interview:
2003
Kiev, Ukraine

KEY PERSON

Ghivertz
Year of birth:
1862
City of birth:
Priluki
Country name at time of birth:
Russia
Year of death:
1892
City of death:
Ivanivtsi
Country of death:
Russia
Died:
before WW II
Occupation
before WW II:
Housewife

Other Person

Etia Ghivertz
Year of birth:
1889
City of birth:
Ivanivtsi
Country name at time of birth:
Russia
Year of death:
1890
City of death:
Ivanivtsi
Country of death:
Russia
Died:
before WW II

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