Rare And Sentimental Photographs Of Homeless Children In Soviet Union In The 1920s
By the early 1920s, millions of orphaned and abandoned children, collectively described in Russian as besprizornye, besprizorniki (literally “unattended”) crowded cities, towns, and villages across the new Soviet state. By 1922, World War I, Russian Revolution, and Civil War had resulted in the loss of at least 16 million lives within the Soviet Union’s borders, and severed contact between millions of children and their parents. At this time, Bolshevik authorities were faced with an estimated seven million homeless youths.
The great Volga famine of 1921–1922 accounted for some five million deaths and played a huge role in depriving children of their homes. Vast numbers of children were deserted, many abandoning their families themselves, and many parents actively abandoning their children. Continue reading »
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