By Berta Bachmann, translated from German Edition by Edgar C. Duin
American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, Lincoln, Nebraska, 1983, 110 pages, softcover.
In the Foreword to the American Edition, Pastor Heinrich Roemmich writesi: “Berta Bachmann has rendered a special service to all people interested in the Russian Germans. The memoirs reveal many facets of life in the Soviet Union during the war years. Berta describes the long Siberian winters and the constant struggle against hunger, cold, and the oppressions of the “Predsedatyel” in charge of the collective farm on white they lived, who often use his position to exploit the Germans and to extort from them every article value in exchange for food. There was the constant fear of being deported to the “Trudarmiya”, the forced labor camps, where conditions were event worse than in their closed settlements.”
The Steblau Family Home in the “Podkhoz”. (Mrs. Stebalu was Berta Bachmann’s mother.)
“With this book, the author has composed a fine memorial to the German wives and mothers who had to live through these dark times, but who nevertheless remained unbroken and protected their children from sinking into despair and cynicism. We can only be thankful for this gift and recommend its reading to every one of our families and to all those who have anything to do with those who have returned to Germany. One puts it deeply affected with no residue of bitterness and hate.”
Berta Bachmann writes in the Preface: “since the Second World War, I have had in mind to describe the life of German women in the Soviet Union during the war. After living in freedom now for a number of years, I wish at last to express my thoughts on this subject, for I feel that I shall only then find peace when I have put in writing what has pursed and distressed me for years and thus lighten the burden on my heart.”
Memories of Kazakhstan
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