Archive for February 2022

The making of story, The Informant’s Agenda, and thirty plus years of research

Reflections

HPIM2273_thumb.jpg My family history – files, photos and documents on the Mannhalter family tree from Germany, Russia, Ukraine and North America

It was the year my father died in 1982 when I began the long journey of researching my paternal family history. When I realized all the resources out there in libraries, genealogy organizations and later on internet sites it opened up a whole new world of things at my fingertips, literally.

My paternal grandfather’s family were a part of the huge mass of immigrants who came over to the U.S. from Russia. My grandfather came from Odessa, Ukraine. As the years progressed and I learned so much about their lives, culture and what they left behind in Russia I had no clue yet or real evidence of their Jewish background because their family was Lutheran when they immigrated in 1889. When I did learn of their Jewish connection and background…

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Posted February 23, 2022 by Joyce in My Writings

The making of story, The Informant’s Agenda, and thirty plus years of research

HPIM2273_thumb.jpg

My family history – files, photos and documents on the Mannhalter family tree from Germany, Russia, Ukraine and North America

 

It was the year my father died in 1982 when I began the long journey of researching my paternal family history. When I realized all the resources out there in libraries, genealogy organizations and later on internet sites it opened up a whole new world of things at my fingertips, literally.

My paternal grandfather’s family were a part of the huge mass of immigrants who came over to the U.S. from Russia. My grandfather came from Odessa, Ukraine. As the years progressed and I learned so much about their lives, culture and what they left behind in Russia I had no clue yet or real evidence of their Jewish background because their family was Lutheran when they immigrated in 1889. When I did learn of their Jewish connection and background I was hooked and obsessed with my research.

I began filling up notebooks, buying scores of books and maps, joining German Russian genealogy clubs and visiting libraries and the RLDS Family History centers in my location to get into their exhaustive archives and files. I remember the excitement as I scrolled through their massive microfiche files and cataloged records and  finding a copy of the actual document of my 3x great grandfather’s immigration from Germany into Russia in 1786. I must have scared the other women in that room who filled their days volunteering time at the family history center when I loudly exclaimed,  “I found it. I found my ancestor.”

The rest is all history too as I spent hours pouring over books, maps and resources. Then in May of 1989 my dream came true and I was booked with a tour group to visit Russia. My husband was unable to go with me, so I flew alone to Moscow and hooked up with the tour group when I arrived. We visited Moscow, Kharkov, Kiev, Odessa and finally Leningrad (then named after Vladimir Lenin, and now renamed St. Petersburg). It was an absolute unforgettable and exciting trip. It was during that time, the ‘cold war’ period when Russia and its republics were still under the Communist regime.

But, my  journey did not end with that trip. I still revisit those places if only through the internet sites, maps and resources as I write the chapters of my ongoing story, The Informant’s Agenda and follow Monica on a similar journey as she travels to Russia, Moldova and Ukraine to learn the history of her own family, and that of families like her own. The same excitement (almost) is there as i narrate her story and journey.

Little did we know that Ukraine would make history again with the aggressive action by Russia to take possession of the Crimean region. The history of Russia, Ukraine, and all former Soviet republics is one of turmoil, revolution, dictatorships, destruction and rebuilding.  Now again, the country of Ukraine fight to keep and regain what they have lost to Russia. Their economy suffers while the west decide if, or how it can help. Their plight to keep a government and democracy strong is once again hanging in the balance. Although I will not bring into my story their current story I follow it in the news, and my prayers and thoughts are with them through this time. I hope one day Ukraine will look back on all this as just another chapter in their history that helped strengthen and unify their country in the reformation process.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Joyce E. (Johnson) Mannhalter  (2014)

Footnotes: (February 23, 2022) Although I first posted this in March 2014, we once again see the driven ambition of a man (Putin) intent on enlarging his territorial empire and taking it back to pre cold war days with it’s former Soviet Union regime or even the Czarist Russian anarchy regime. It is just like the prophetic warnings from the prophet Ezekiel’s in the Old Testament in chapters 38 and 39. While Russia is on the move I believe that God is too, and He is moving things along on His own timetable.  My prayers are with the people of Ukraine as they now fight to defend themselves, their country  and what rightfully belongs to them.   JEM

 

Hope Instilled

Hope instilled in hearts

is believing for things once

thought impossible,

but God assures us, by faith

we’ll see His promise fulfilled.

_________________

Joyce Mannhalter © Feb. 2022

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 NIV

 

On the subject of Love

A declaration

Of Love is remembered more,

Not with eloquent

Words or gifts, but by honest

Expressions and selfless heart.

_______________

Joyce Mannhalter © 2022

 

Posted February 14, 2022 by Joyce in Love poems, My Writings, poetry, Tanka poetry, Valentine's Day

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