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Russian Immigrants’ Oral History

Russia has always been interesting to me. Being the largest country in the world, it has its own unique and interesting history, which is full of the outstanding men, great achievements and mysteries. Their culture is just opposite to ours and it is very interesting to get to know about another lifestyle, mentality and the unique customs and traditions. Moreover, there is the great number of mentions of Russia in the newspapers today, which also leads to the appearing of the interest.

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The immigrant, being interviewed in the tape, is called Morris Abrams. He was born in a very small town, not far from the city Slonim. He does not mention the year, but it becomes clear, that he was a child, when his family arrived to America in 1899. That is why it is easy to suggest, that he is quite old at the moment of the interview as it was recorded in 1986.

The hero of our story did not make the decision to migrate from Russia, he just followed his parents. However, from the story we understand, that the poorness was one of the main reasons. His father owned a flour mill, but it was detrimental, and that is why he had to leave for America to earn some money. Undoubtedly, it was the right decision. The father of the interviewee managed to find a job of a tailor. Obviously, the payment was good enough to support his family, still remaining in Slonim. In course of time he was able to save some money and defray his familys migration to the USA, providing them with a place to leave, which was comparatively good.

The interviewee does not mention any political issues or the political situation in the country at that time, he only remembered that the town, where he was born, used to belong to Poland many years ago, that is why it is possible to suppose, that some national questions still remained actual.

Being a little boy at the moment of their departure, he remembers his Homeland rather vague, however we can understand, that except his mother, father and younger sister, he also had his grandmother, who was against their leaving, being afraid of them forgetting their Jewish routes, and his uncle, accompanying them to the station.

The interviewee also mentions some cultural peculiarities of the town. He describes it as a borough with the great Jewish community, where people spoke Yiddish, and that is why he did not know Russian when they arrived to America. However, he does not mention any problems based on the racial inequality just because of his belonging to Jewish. The only thing mentioned is the choice of studying language, which was predetermined by the future ability to find the job, as it would be much easier to obtain it for the English speaking young man.

The story was fascinating and the interviewer had been asking an interesting questions, though one, the most interesting for me, was not asked. Talking to that man, I would rather ask him how it was to make a 16 days trip by ship at that time, because it boggles my mind. Having no solid ground under foot and no opportunity to get off the ship in case of seasickness, it seems a real torture, and I am quite interested about the impressions of a little boy making that trip.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, December 16). Russian Immigrants’ Oral History. Retrieved from


StudyCorgi. (2021, December 16). Russian Immigrants’ Oral History.

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"Russian Immigrants’ Oral History." StudyCorgi, 16 Dec. 2021,

1. StudyCorgi. "Russian Immigrants’ Oral History." December 16, 2021.


StudyCorgi. "Russian Immigrants’ Oral History." December 16, 2021.


StudyCorgi. 2021. "Russian Immigrants’ Oral History." December 16, 2021.


StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Russian Immigrants’ Oral History'. 16 December.

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