Remembering the Holocaust

The photo above is Shlomo Thal, born in 1904 in Valdemarpils, Latvia. This photo is particularly powerful for me as it looks so much like my own grandfather, born the same year. Shlomo and my grandfather were second cousins. Shlomo was killed in Riga, Latvia, in 1941. He was 37. On this Yom HaShoah, I’dContinue reading “Remembering the Holocaust”

Leaving Courland

Among my collection of interviews is this story, told by Paula Thal Aminoff in 1974, of her brother Jacob and his efforts to leave Courland (now Latvia) before being drafted into the Russian Army. Ted: You know about Abraham Blumberg.. well, I’ll tell you. His father, Abraham’s father [Jacob Blumberg] was fairly well‑to‑do, he wasContinue reading “Leaving Courland”

Who Was Ivan Teryokin?

The Mysterious Story of the Russian General I’m fortunate to have in my archives recordings of multiple interviews with my great-grandfather’s sister, Paula Thal Aminoff. In a few of them, she recalls the story of Ivan Teryokin, which was evidently a story frequently told and asked about. But both his relationship and his actual militaryContinue reading “Who Was Ivan Teryokin?”