2017 m. November 25
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UNESCO program “Memory of the World”

In May 21, 2015 seven new objects were entered into UNESCO program‘s “Memory of the World” Lithuania‘s national register. One of them were documents written on a birch bark (letters of deportees from Siberia), which are saved in the Museum of Genocide Victims of the Memorial department of The Genocide and Resistance Research Centre of Lithuania. Registration number of the Certificate is 63.





Birch bark letter written in 1942 by a political prisoner of 1941 Kazimieras Šiliūnas from Krasnoyarsk Region, Nizhny Ingash District, Reshoty for his family, which was exiled to Altai Region, Pankrushikha District. In his letter, political prisoner Kazimieras Šiliūnas asks his family in exile to send him some food products: dried potatoes, bread crumbles, fat, garlic, and tobacco. He mentions that there is a possibility in the labour camp to exchange tobacco (for food and other necessary items).


Birch bark letter written in 1943 by a political prisoner of 1941 Antanas Baniulis from Krasnoyarsk Region, Nizhny Ingash District, Reshoty for his daughter Danutė Baniulytė, who was exiled to Yakutia ASSR, Ust-Yansky District, Kazachya. In his letter, political prisoner Antanas Baniulis writes that political prisoner Petkevičius (given name unknown) who was in their labour camp was taken to some other place (labour camp). He points out that those who receive parcels have better possibilities to live/survive in the camp. He asks his daughter Danutė Baniulytė, who is also in exile, whether she has any tobacco or fish. At the end of his letter, he asks her to write about what work the exiled family members have to do.


Birch bark letter written in 1944 by a political prisoner of 1941 Juozas Meškauskas from Krasnoyarsk Region, Nizhny Ingash District, Reshoty for his brother Jonas Meškauskas and his friend Juozas Račkauskas in Lithuania. In his letter, political prisoner Juozas Meškauskas writes his brother Jonas Meškauskas that he has already sent a letter to him but has received no response. He provides the address of his family in exile and asks for parcels for him and his family if the post accepts them. At the end of his letter, he mentions that he has sent a more detailed letter to his former colleague Šuminas.


Birch bark letter written in about 1945–1946 from Krasnoyarsk Region, Nizhny Ingash District, Reshoty by a political prisoner of Benediktas Šumskis for his relatives in Lithuania. In his letter, political prisoner Benediktas Šumskis greets his mother, sisters and brothers on the occasion of Christmas and the New Year. He expresses a great desire to meet them the following year. He asks his family to write how they managed to survive the war. He asks them to send him a parcel, which cannot exceed 8 kg. He describes how the parcel should be packaged. He asks for some bacon, smoked meat or sausages, dried foodstuffs, sugar, cocoa, flour, tobacco and some paper. He says he has not lost hope of meeting his family. He continually prays for this.


Birch bark postcard made by Anelė Karpavičiūtė, who was exiled in 1947, for her sister Salomėja Karpavičiūtė. Tyumen area, Velizhan region, 1948. The author of the postcard Anelė Karpavičiūtė, expresses her wish that her sister Salomėja Karpavičiūtė will be able to celebrate next Christmas at home (in their motherland).


Birch bark album made by a political prisoner of 1950 Ona Abariūtė in 1952 in an intermediate prison in Krasnoyarsk Region. The album has a front cover and a back cover. There are four pages inside made of birch bark. There are cuts on each page for photographs. Political prisoner Ona Abariūtė-Abarienė preserved her hand-made birch bark album during the entire period of her imprisonment in labour camps and brought it to Lithuania in 1956.
© Lietuvos gyventojų genocido ir rezistencijos tyrimo centras.
Created by: „Teratekas”