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Arkady Shulman

Joseph Rochko

Arkady Shulman



This photograph is kept in Verkhnedvinsk museum. It comes from a place called Miory and was donated to the museum by Petr Samoilovich Sheiner, who now lives in Siberia.

This is Peter’s cousin’s wedding, which took place in Miory in 1937. Among the guests there were his parents, Petr himself, his brother and many of their relatives and friends.|

One can see the wedding was not a luxurious one. There were about thirty guests.

Looking through the museum archives I also found recorded memories of Alina Ryzhotskaya, born in 1931.

“My mother once was invited to a Jewish wedding and told us that their weddings were different from ours. At first men and women are in different rooms – they give useful advice to the bride and the groom. Then they sit down at the tables. They do not drink much vodka but talk a lot.”

Usually, when looking at old photographs people have positive memories, which they share with their descendants. However, in this case all we see is the horrible fate which expected the people in the photograph.

“Of all the people here only I and a girl from Leonpol survived, - wrote Petr Sheiner. – All the rest shared the fate of all the prisoners of Miory ghetto.”

When the Jewish residents of Miory were being taken to the place of the execution, many of them started throwing away family photographs and documents. It was a message to the living from those who were going away forever… Most probably at that moment Petr’s mother threw away this photo, hoping that one day it will find her son, who would come back from the battlefront.

On that day about 1300 people were killed in Miory. Today we know the family names of more than 800 victims. More than 40 Jewish residents of Miory managed to escape and join the partisan movement.

In 1947 Petr Sheiner was demobilized and returned to Miory. A Polish woman, who had picked up the photo, gave it to him. On the reverse side of the photograph the woman wrote: God take compassion upon the people that are going through such misery.

Jewish settlements in Vitebsk region

Vitebsk Albrehtovo Babinovichi Baran Bayevo Begoml Beshenkovichi Bocheikovo Bogushevsk Borkovichi Braslav Bychiha Chashniki Disna Dobromysli Dokshitsy Druya Dubrovno Glubokoye Gorodok Kamen Kohanovo Kolyshki Kopys Krasnopolie Kublichi Lepel Liady Liozno Lukoml Luzhki Lyntupy Miory Obol Oboltsy Orsha Osintorf Ostrovno Parafianovo Plissa Polotsk Prozorki Senno Sharkovshina Shumilino Sirotino Slaveni Smolyany Surazh Tolochin Ulla Verhnedvinsk Vidzy Volyntsy Yanovichi Yezerishe Zhary Ziabki

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