Seventy-fourth installment from the diary of my great-grandfather’s sister Alise, written during the First World War. When the diary starts, she is living just a few miles from the front lines of the Eastern Front, and is then forced to flee with her husband and two young daughters to her family’s house near Limbaži as the war moves even closer. Her third child, a son, was born there in February 1916. The family has now relocated (again) to a home near Valmiera, and the Russian Revolution is in full swing. For more background, see here, and click on the tag “diary entries” to see all of the entries that I have posted.

If there is mention of a recognizable historical figure and event, I will provide a Wikipedia link so that you can read more about the events that Alise is describing.

July 29, 1918

We were at church with TrÅ«de and Dagiņa for the childrens’ service, which Pastor Belavs organized. So many, so many children were together and they all sang so beautifully. Closer to Jesus, closer to God, we must all work to be. In our Bible study, the pastor has proclaimed the end of the world. Times are terrible and a lot fits with the proclamations. By his calculations, the world will end in 1933. We are currently living in peace, and living well, but that which is happening in other parts of the world, that will definitely be written about in thick books which people will read with wonder and fear. Everything fits with the Bible: War, famine, all sorts of plagues, in Petrograd a thousand people are dying of cholera every day. The famine there is terrible, many are fleeing here, tired, exhausted. A pood of rye, if you’re lucky enough to get it, costs up to 600 rubles. Prices are unbelievable.

People are rising up against people, countries against countries, we are even reading about earthquakes. Brothers are killing brothers. We hear about rail accidents, and the newspapers are talking about how our former Czar Nicholas has been shot by dishonourable executioners, the decision was made solely by the Yekaterinaburg Soviet. Even the little heir has died. Yaroslavl is in flames, in Petrograd the Bolsheviks want to eliminate the intelligentsia, putting people into forced labour, making them gather the corpses of those who have died of different plagues, clean the toilets and wash the barracks.

WW1 Diary – July 29, 1918
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