Alexander Pokrovsky, 1912-1937
“Remembrance (1)“ recalled the efforts of volunteers like Yury DMITRIEV over the past quarter century, thanks to which the names and reputations of some three million victims of the Soviet regime have been restored.
It would be natural to proceed from the discovery of the killing field at Sandarmokh in 1997 to an account of Dmitriev’s subsequent work to create a unique memorial complex there. Natural but unthinkingly triumphal. For behind these long lists of names, with their meagre biographical information, lies a horrific and prolonged period in human history, the facts of which were then denied or concealed for many years in the USSR.
Ocassionally more detailed information is available. Brief glimpses of that bloody past show what happened to families and to individuals. The fate of the four young Pokrovsky brothers is a case in point. The third, Alexander (pictured above), was among the hundreds shot at Sandarmokh in 1937.
This poignant photograph was taken in 1932 when he and brothers were all arrested in Moscow.
(To be continued)