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Postcards from Home

Ashmyany (Osmiana), Belarus


Ashmyany (Osmiana), Belarus
cir 1920s

Mary (nee Sopransky) Gurvich in her bier in Osmiana near Vilnius Lithuania. It is believed that the others in the photo are her children who had remained with her in Lithuania.

Three of her daughters, Lena, Gussie and Celia, emigrated to NYC, married and raised families.  Their descendents live all over the US. Mary and Joseph's granddaughter Rose Cabat is a well-known potter.

A son Jacobo and his son Zusmanas immigrated to Montevideo, Uruguay. Zusmanas changed his name to José Gurvich, the late well-known painter*1.   A retrospective of his work was shown in NYC Oct 2005- Feb 2006.   José's son Martín now lives in Belgium.   

A family story is that the three sisters offered to buy tickets for their siblings to come to America.   The siblings said they wanted to stay, but because they were poor they would like the money instead, which was sent to them. It is assumed that the siblings and any offspring they had perished in the Holocaust.  The sisters were unable to find them after WWII.


*1 -- note from Jef Adin (10-2012): There is wrong information on this page: “A son Jacobo and his son Zusmanas e\immigrated to Montevideo, Uruguay. Zusmanas changed his name to José Gurvich, the late well-known painter. “ Jose Gurvich was born in Lithuania. Here is a link to his museum in Uruguay: Jose was born in Lithuania and was my father’s first cousin – His mother and my grandmother were sisters. In early 1970’s, before his death, Jose his wife and their son Martin came to live with us in NY before settling in NYC where Jose passed away from a heart attack. Jose’s father and mother were married in Lithuania, immigrated to Uruguay prior to the Nazi invasion of Lithuania. They were unable to enter the U.S.. Jose was born with the name Joseph (or it’s Lithuanian equivalent).












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