Die Welt-Post, Thursday, 1 September 1932
Page 2, "From Russia"
Walter, 17 July 1932
Dear brother and sister-in-law:
We make it known to you that we, thanks to the good Lord, are still yet healthy and wish you from our hearts, the same grace.
We received your letter with great joy and again praise you for your love. Dear brother, from your earlier letters in which you reported your own difficulties, I saw that I could not count on you for assistance. On the 17th of May, a helping angel came here and brought us the joyous message that far over the mountains, valleys, forests and seas, warm hearts beat for us yet here in poor Russia. It was not my intention, dear brother, of asking you for help but when my last support was robbed from me the emergency was too great. On the 23rd of May someone took the last cow from me. Today one has to pay 1,000 rubles for a cow. I cannot even think about getting a replacement.
We received a Food Draft issued in Moscow and since one can get more food in Saratov we sought to have it signed over to Saratov, which it was. When we drove to Saratov to pick up our food at the Torgin Office we found that only rice and sugar were on hand. From there we sold our foodstuffs and got 60 to 70 bushels of pelletized cornmeal. Now we are in hope that the new harvest will result in food being less expensive. If it fails, then things will be worse than in previous years. The government is not going to take as much as before in order thereby to somewhat improve the situation of the farmers, only 264 million pud will be taken.
Dear brother, I must tell you that brother Georg is very ill. He was with us in Saratov and already had an inflammation in his finger, however, he is again getting better.
We now get 760 rubles for $20. If the food were not so very expensive one could still draw a deep sigh of relief but we live with a dark future. The weather is dry and hot, everything thirsts for rain, the gardens look sad -- there are few apples, we got absolutely none from the back garden. There are a few Kitaike, Adamsapples [Translator's note: most likely pomegranates] but if we get any is another question.
Wilhelm guards the garden grounds where we have potatoes, carrots and beans because so much has been stolen. Heinrich and Lotte work in the Knesofker Collective where the food situation is better than here at Kurnaf. Conditions at the Collective are sad, economically, the horses died during the winter and they have at most, 60 head remaining at Kurnaf, and so the remaining cows are used for work.
Brother-in-law Butherus also sent some food, we received his letter 3 weeks ago but as yet have not received the Food Draft. He wrote that it came to $16 and that one could have been bought in America for $5.
Give my greetings to brother-in-law Bener and his wife and children, unfortunately we have heard nothing from them and we have no address for them, I would also greet sister Lisa Margaret and her family and also brother-in-law Hill and his wife and children.
In closing, I greet you many thousand fold times. If we do not see one another again in this world, we hope to see you again in Heaven.
Sent in by Conrad Klippert, 716 E. Street, Lincoln, Nebraska
Page 2, "From Russia"
Written on the 10th of May by me, Louise Roth of Kutter, wife of Jacob Roth. I am alone with 2 daughters, our father died here in Achmalinska. Please, my relatives and friends, especially Heinrich Roth, if it is possible, assist me.
My address is: Kazakhstan, Almatinski Okruga Talte Kurganski, Sowchos, Kak-su Nos. 1 Punkd 1. Mrs. Louise Roth
Written by me Heinrich and Katharina Schmick from Kazakhstan to you, much loved brother Georg, son of Friedrich from Grimm. We do not have your address so we ask that these lines be published in the Welt-Post in order to ask you to send us a packet of food because we find ourselves in great need. Already many packets have come through Moscow and Riga to our village.
My address is: Almatinski Okruga Talte Kurganski Raion Potch Otd, Kugali Selo Zarizin 2 uschaft 1 Punkd. Heinrich Jacob Schmick
Mr. Johannes Brehm, 856 Z Street, Nebraska (sic), received the following letter from the old country:
Written on the 27th of July 1932
Dear brother Johannes and Kath. Lies.:
We are all sick here, suffering from hunger. I can still walk a little but am greatly swollen and do not know whether I will yet be alive when this letter comes into your hands. Hunger has made us all weary and we do not know what to do about it. However, we wish you the best of health and hope that you are never overtaken by such a fate.
On 27 July we received your packet of food which, unfortunately, we had to give to friends who had previously received food from America and from whom we had borrowed food, therefore we do not now have any more. The farmers who planted again stand in danger of having everything they got from their planting taken away from them.
It was a long time that passed before we received your packet and we feared it had been lost. If you again send us something, send only a check which we can redeem in Saratov for food. For dollars which we receive, we do not get much food. The last time we got 26 kilos of flour, 4 kilos of rice, 2 kilos of oil, 100 grams of tea.
Dear cousin Hannes, help us, please, for as long as you can or we will all be lost. I say to you and other friends, if only each of you give a couple of dollars a month it will help us a lot. Get everyone together like in 1922, we know we have many friends in America.
You write, you could better help us if we were there with you. We would gladly come if it were possible. Jacob left here and would gladly help us if he only had a horse. Now we ask you if it would be possible to send him some money so he could buy a horse.
We had a letter from Liesbeth in which she reported that she would help to keep us from starving but we have waited day and night and neither food nor letter has come and so we must likely starve to death.
It is sad that one's children, who themselves have grown children who can work, forget their old parents, while a brother has already sent 3 Basilken (Food Drafts).
Send writing paper and envelopes to us and be cordially greeted by your brother-in-law and sister,
Heinrich and Kath. Hahn
(The daughters of the family are Mrs. Kath. Elis. Krieger and Mrs. Elisabeth Spady who both live in Sarndal, Washington - Welt-Post Editor.)
This translation provided courtesy of Hugh Lichtenwald.