The Volga Germans experienced periodic droughts and famines from the time of settlement in 1767 up to the Bolshevik Revolution. Prior to 1921, the most recent famine had occurred in 1892.
The Russian Povolzhye (Volga region) famine of 1921 began early that year and its terrible impact was felt in Norka through 1924. It is estimated that this famine claimed the lives of 5 million people. The famine stemmed from both natural and human causes.
Roberts, C. E. B. (1921). Through starving Russia : being a record of a journey to Moscow and the Volga provinces, in August and September, 1921. London: Methuen & Co.
Sinner, S. D. (2000). Letters from hell : an index to Volga-German famine letters published in Die Welt-Post 1920-1925 ; 1930-1934. Lincoln, Neb.: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia.
Millions starving in Lenine's paradise of atheism. (1921). New York: Funk and Wagnalls.