Sandarmokh, 5 August 2021

Today an extraordinary resource, “Russia’s Necropolis of Terror and the Gulag“, compiled by Petersburg Memorial’s Research & Information Centre (and released in 2016), has been launched in an English version. What follows is an excerpt from that website’s account of Sandarmokh.

============

[…] Historians believe that a considerable proportion of those executed in Karelia were shot at Sandarmokh. A transport of 1,111 prisoners from the Solovki Special Prison were brought from the White Sea to the clearing and shot there between 27 October and 4 November 1937.

Continue reading

“Light in the darkness” (II)

On Wednesday, 22 July at 2.30 pm (Moscow Time), Judge Merkov will announce the verdict in the Dmitriev case at the Petrozavodsk City Court. Yury DMITRIEV was arrested in December 2016 and has spent most of the time since then in prison.

As shown by The Search for Sandarmokh, a book published last year,  the background to the trial reaches back more than 80 years into Soviet history to the late 1930s. Its author Irina FLIGE outlines and analyses the unfolding drama of that history.

Read more …

“Light in the Darkness” (I)

This website has already published excerpts from Irina Flige‘s 2019 book about Sandarmokh: The Search for Sandarmokh. What follows is from a review in the January 2020 issue of Novy mir, the literary magazine (Moscow).

“Two themes run through Irina Flige’s book,” writes Tatyana Bonch-Osmolovskaya. “One is the quest, pursued across many years, for the ‘lost transport’, a search to locate 1,111 inmates of the Solovki Special Prison who vanished in October 1937.” The other theme, which “embraces and deepens the first”, describes Sandarmokh today, as a place of commemoration and remembrance.

Read More …

The Search for Sandormokh (contd)

SOLOVKI

From a list to biographies

To compile biographical profiles and confirm the information they contained we sent questionnaires to those regions in the USSR where the prisoners on Solovki had been arrested and sentenced.

Solovetsky Islands (map)

Meanwhile, we engaged in more active communication with the family members who took a keen and constant interest in our work – they longed to find out more about their relatives. They themselves began to draw up questionnaires and study the case files, bringing copies of the documents and photos to our archive at Memorial. Sometimes, on the contrary, we became  acquainted with the children of executed prisoners from Solovki as a result of studying the case files of their relatives.

Veniamin Joffe and I were establishing what had happened not to abstract victims of the Great Terror but to real people, we were uncovering the circumstances in which they had met their end.

An excerpt from Irina Flige‘s The Search for Sandormokh (2019)

See More …