Dedication of the Glueckstal Monument
By Margaret Aman Freeman, Coordinator, Glueckstal
Association (GCRA, www.glueckstal.net),
Redondo Beach, California
The dedication of the Glueckstal monument in Glinoye,
Moldova (the current name of the Glueckstal village) was a huge
success! Fifteen Americans attended the ceremony on May 24, 2002,
to commemorate the presence of our ancestors in the villages of
Glueckstal, Neudorf, Bergdorf, and Kassel.
The monument itself is a black granite stone, about
40 inches high. It is placed on a rise at the corner of the school
yard, with a backdrop of evergreen trees, and can be seen from
two streets. The text on the front is in Russian, and the text
on the back is in German. Underneath, on both sides, is written
"Glueckstal Colonies Research Association, May 24, 2002,"
The dedication took place after a program presented
by the Glinoye School, under the direction of the principal, and
her assistant in charge of the Glueckstal School Museum, located
in the school, which has an extensive display on the history of
the village. The school pageant, written for the dedication, included
readings, songs and dances telling the village history, and the
story of its inhabitants through the years. The fourth graders
presented a folk dance, older children presented a dance representing
the ghosts of the valley and the long deceased ancestors, and
another dance of the mingling of the ghosts with those currently
living in the village. There was also a dance showing the conflict
of good and evil in the colonies over time. All in all, the program
showed the cycles of life and death, joys and tribulations, and
the journey of life.
Those present for the occasion included Mayor Strigunov,
representatives of the Moldova/Transdniester Education Department
and Historical Archives, reporters from two TV stations, newspapers
and a radio station. The Glueckstal school is the first school
in the region to establish a museum to show their village history,
and also the one of first schools to have a monument to honor
their ancestors. Because of this the head of education and the
head of archives for the state of Moldova also attended.
Foreign guests were: Oskar and Helma SiefriedEberle,
from Germany, born in the region, Roger and Elaine JobKlusman,
Tim and Judy Klusman, Bernardine Lang Kuhn, Michael M. Miller,
Gwen Pritzkau, Dr. Harley Roth, Thomas and Janice Huber Stangl,
Dr. Ken and Cathy Vogele, Bob and Margaret Aman Freeman, and Prarie
Public Television (North Dakota) videographer Bob Dambach.
Margaret Aman Freeman and Michael Miller raised
the sheet covering the monument, after which the school children
and townspeople came forward to place peonies at the base of the
monument. At the conclusion of the dedication, Pastor Vladimir
Moser from the Tiraspol Lutheran Church consecrated the stone
and blessed the sacred ground on which it stood. This location
also contains human remains unearthed at the site of the old German
cemetery of Glueckstal. The present school was built on the site
of the old German cemetery.
The group attending were much gratified by the
day's events. The villagers hosted the visitors with lodging and
their hospitality was very much appreciated by all. To show their
appreciation, the visitors took up a collection which was used
to purchase a television and videorecorder, along with educational
tapes for the school in Glinnoye.
It was the unstinting effort of Pavel Pratchuk,
Dr. Serge Yelizarov, and Michael M. Miller that brought this project
to fruition. All members of the Glueckstal Colonies Research Association
extend their gratitude.