27 September 1923

Die Welt-Post, Thursday, 27 September 1923

Page 8, "Letters from Russia"

19 August 
To: Jacob Volz York, Nebraska

My dear brother Jacob:
      I received your dear letter of 17 July from Frankfurt, Germany, and also your card from London from 30 July and my heart is gladdened over your health and well-being. Above all I am glad that the Lord especially blessed your trip. Indeed, you are a bloodhound for using the opportunity to do research about our coming from Germany. Good for you; I, for my part, would also do so but I have as yet not had the opportunity. I am pleased and grateful that you have related so much to me about your travel experiences. Hopefully you will tell me more about the homeland of our ancestors once you are home with your family. I have prayed to the Lord for you each morning and evening, that He may bring you happy and healthy to your family. It would be good if everyone conducted themselves in accordance with Hebrews 13, 18, where it says: We trust that we have a good conscience as we wish to conduct ourselves honestly in all things.
      After your departure from us on 17 June, another 2 weeks went by before we had any rain and although we got some precipitation after that, there was not enough to thoroughly moisten the soil. Because of this our harvest has turned our less than average. Grains yielded from 15 to 20 pud per desjatin. We had few potatoes; and likewise vegetables grew poorly. The price of fruit is low, from 15 to 40 ruble per pud for apples, pears and dried fruit. Prices for other products is constantly rising. A pfund of meat costs 20 ruble, wheat flour 250 ruble per pud, rye flour 200 ruble, potatoes 40 ruble, etc. An arschin of gingham costs 50 ruble, a taned sheepskin 200 ruble, a pair of boots costs 1200 ruble, shoes from 600 to 700 ruble. Everything is again rising endlessly in price. The only good thing is that her in Balzer there is still some work. On the Wiesenseite there is great poverty once again, mainly among the catholics. Women and children from the village of Preuss come here with baskets, brooms and liquorish to trade for old clothes, even if they are only rags; they say: We will patch them together. This summer my wife emptied the attic of things we had not worn for 20 years and the people happily accepted them.
      Earlier Bergseiters traveled to the Wiesenseite, "uffen Daoluh,"(dialect: to find daywork---translator), this summer it was the reverse, day laborers and "Plotneck" (building carpenters) from over there came to us. My neighbor Beritz had a man from  Seelmann and a man from Moorworking for him for 2 weeks. The carpenters get 6 arschin of gingham for 12 hours of work --- equal to 600 ruble in value --- or that amount of money.
      Shortly after you left, my neighbor across the street fell victim to an accident. During the demolition of his front room the wall collapsed on him and he was struck dead; he was Jerheinrich Kiljan's son who was invalided during the war.
      Recently old Kisselmann's Jacob suddenly died. In the morning he was vigorous and healthy, in the evening he was a corpse.
      Jackelhannes from Saratov was astride his horse one day, felt queasy, dismounted, sat down on the ground and died.
      The 17 year old son of "Fauste Joseph" whose wife is the daughter of Daniel Volz --- a widow --- went one evening to  Oberdorf with some friends for some fun; as they entered the broad street he fell down and was a corpse. My neighbor Beritz got his horse and wagon to pick him up; I saw him drive by about 10 o'clock in the evening.
      Last week Heinrich Stoehr, "Paulkonrad's" Heinrich, died of Abdominal Typhoid Fever at the age of 64.
      I passed on your greetings to your mother-in-law, she and her family are well; they are always eager to hear something about you. Myself and my family are also well for now. "Nor hun ich die Wenter kah Belzi, un do bist Dou schuld. Hestamerr ah Dicka gewwa, no herrich ahns." (dialect: Now I have no winter coat and it is your fault. If you had given me a heavy overcoat I would have had one---translator).
      There has been a huge crop failure in Siberia, thus many are returning here from there. Some former Balzerites have come here from Omsk.
      Our in-law, the Moehser's Kathrina, died 2 weeks ago.
      If it is possible, send me the Welt-Post. I will send reports to you to pass on to the newspaper. With best brotherly greetings, your brother who loves you,

                                                    Jacob Bauer


Page 8, "Letters from Russia"

30 July 
To: J.H. Baeckel Lincoln, Nebraska

Much esteemed and valued friend and old neighbor:
      First I greet you affectionately and wish you everything good. Now I send you my warmest thanks for thinking of my family and me with the package of things that you sent. My wife was extraordinarily pleased and cannot thank you enough.
      I was also on the Wiesenseite in Pokrowsk by your sister-in-law and found her a bit upset because Jacob in Saratov had not sent her any clothing. The packet her sister-in-law sent to her is lost to her because Bales 390, 391 and 392 got only as far as Moscow where they were distributed to the members of the Peter-Paul Church. I was in Moscow but only learned of this when I returned to Saratov. Thus your good deed was in vain. Those in Moscow could have seen to and provided for themselves; but we here cannot make a go of it.  I am sorry that it happened thus because it discourages one from continuing this work. Please, write me any details you have learned about the matter.
      I can further tell you that the harvest here has turned out to be really poor. From 1 1/2 desjatin of land I harvested only 20 pud of rye. From 2 1/2 desjatin of wheat I harvested nothing. The situation in the Volga region is altogether very sad and made doubly sad because the A.R.A. has left. Meanwhile we hope unto God, that He will provide for us.
      By this time you will already have spoken with Mr. Volz who can tell you everything about how things stand and are going here. Before we parted in Moscow he gave me 5 dollars which I was very much in need of. I had accompanied my  sister-in-law Eva Reifschneider to Moscow on her journey to America. I found that everything in Moscow is very expensive.
      In closing, be affectionately greeted and let me hear from you soon.
                                          With love, your

                                          Jacob Hinkel


This translation provided courtesy of Hugh Lichtenwald.