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Emilie Klukas

Emilie was born in November 6, 1864 in Romansdorf, Ukraine, Russia.

Her parents were Gottfried Klukas and Louisa Felscher.

Emilie married Franz Bastian abt 1870 in Ukraine, Russia. They had 11 children: Ottilie (1871 to ?); Alvina (1873 to ?); Robert (1875 to ?); Wilhelm (1877 to ?); Rosa (1879 to ?); Albert (1881 to ?); Anna (1883 to ?); August (1885 to ?); Adolf (1887 to ?); Eberhard (1889 to ?); and Julius (1891 to ?).

Emilie died ? in Siberia, Russia.

Letters to Samuel and Charlotte Seiffert

Tuchosibirsk, February 20, 1909
I, Emilie Bastian, write this letter with sorrow and woe, and greet you, dear sister, and yours many thousand times.
For my part, I'm still alive and well, thank God, and hope that my little note will find you all in the best of health.
Dear sister Charlotte, I'm now in Siberia, and I've been here for two years, I've been weeping and lamenting off and on that I couldn't write you, dear sister, because I didn't have your address. Ernestine got your address. So we're writing you, and we send our regards. My husband died in Russia, leaving me with ten children. I was left destitute, and then I moved to Siberia with my sister. We travelled to Tara, but I couldn't go on because my money had run out. All the children were sick, and I had nothing to feed them. We had to wait three months in Tara before we could go to my sister's. I was without a cow and a horse; then I bought a cow for 30 rubles. Then my children had to work. I had to harvest 30 kopizes of hay and one dessiatine of oats to get ten rubles. One kopize of hay was worth 45 kopeks. I got 25 rubles in advance, and I'm to get another 140. On December 15 of each year, the tsar gives that amount of money to each member of any family going to Siberia, and he grants 60 dessiatines (162 acres) to each family. We've also gotten a family homestead.
Dear sister and brother-in-law, up to now, it's been very bad for me. I still don't have a horse. My two girls haven't gotten here yet. They're still staying at Tara. My oldest son, Robert, earns 6 rubles a month. These three children have to send us as much money as I've earned. I have, so to speak, absolutely nothing, for I had no horse and not money with which to buy seed. What I had sowed has frozen, and that was the last of my seed. I had no workers. The people here have to sow as soon as possible, for the growing season is very short. We have only five months of sunshine a year. The winters are very harsh, with temperatures falling as low as -35C. The snow is a good arschin (28 inches) deep.
I don't have much more to write about, so I'll close with God's blessings.
I remain your loyal sister,
Emilie Bastian, nee Klukas
P.S. I also ask you, dear sister and brother-in-law, from the bottom of my heart to send me a picture. Then be so good and send me a picture, for I've forgotten what you look like.
I request a quick reply,
Emilie Bastian, nee Klukas

Romanovska, March 28, 1910
Dear sister Charlotte and brother-in-law Samuel Seiffert,
I'm writing to tell you that I got your letter and the gift you sent me. I'm very thankful for the gift. May the Lord God reward you a hundredfold. I also want to tell you how it's going with me. Since Franz died, it's been very bad. Brother Ludwig never helped me. I was with him for a while. 1 had to sleep with the others in the kitchen. The Romans helped me. I asked my brother-in-law Roman to bring me a pud of peas, but he didn't do it. He lost it on the way. I begged him to go and get it for me, but he didn't. I had to stay behind. My children haven't made me happy. Only Ottilie has been any help. She and Alvina haven't been on our farm yet. I'm also very angry with Alvina. Robert is at home. He only leaves when he has work. Wilhelm got 13 rubles for the winter. Rosa earned 7 rubles last summer, but now she can't work. The wages here are very bad. One has to pay 10 kopeks for a klaster of wood. Robert worked with the Russians on the farm for 25 kopeks, and he had to get up at 3 a.m.. He had to work until 10 p.m.. Food is expensive: a pud of corn meal costs 1 ruble, and a pud of wheat flour costs 1 ruble, 20 kopeks.
I also have four cows. I'd thought of not having cows, but there is so little otherwise, and the family is large. Your gift of 3 rubles, 89 kopeks came at the right time, for I would've been without money otherwise. I'm heartily grateful for that.
Dear sister, when you write us, tell me what your children (the ones you took with you from Russia) are doing and if you're all together. In closing, I send you my best and the same from my child.
I remain your loving sister and sister-in-law,
Emilie Bastian

November 2, 1911
Letter, go from my house to a very distant land. Go over hill and dale. Don't let the way be too wide or too narrow. Arise and let the return mail bring me the most beautiful letter.
Beloved sister, I writing that my children and I are alive and well, thank God. I wish the same for you, dear sister. I've written you two letters and haven't gotten any answer. My dearly beloved sister, it's troubled me that you haven't written. Haven't you gotten the letters, or are you mad at me, dearly beloved sister? If you're angry, then I ask your forgiveness from the bottom of my heart, for our Lord and Savior has commanded us to forgive our brother not just once, but seventy times seven. Therefore, dear sister, you must forgive me.
Dearly beloved sister, you want to know the names of my children. You know the oldest. I don't have them at home any more. Robert's in the military, and Alvina was in Tara. That's a city. She'd been working there, but now I don't know where she is. I haven't seen her for over three years, and Ottilie has been working in Tara for five years. She's had the same job for all this time. She gets 7 rubles a month, and Albert has to go to be discharged (?). I still have Wilhelm, Anna, August, Adolf, Eberhard, and my youngest son, Julius. The children in this area are growing up wild and coarse here, because there's no school to send them to. The people here are like wandering sheep without a shepherd. There hasn't been a pastor here for three years.
My loyal sister, I'm informing you that I got your first gift, and I also got the second one, but it wasn't wrapped. I'm sending it back to you because there's nobody here who can wrap it.
I thank you from the bottom of my heart, dear brother-in-law and sister, for the goodness you've shown to a poor person like me by sending me presents. When I got the 3 rubles and 90 kopeks, it was as if the Good Lord had gotten a good soul. I was very happy about this, but I didn't get the money in Russian currency. This year was very lean, for we got no rain here last summer. Everything that we'd planted and sowed was parched. A pud of flour, which is still scarce, was very expensive. Corn meal was 1 ruble, 80 kopeks a pud, and millet grits are 2 rubles a pud. Wages are very low here.
I also want to tell you about my livestock. I have 4 cows, 2 calves, a bearing heifer, a horse, and 2 foals. I had to slaughter a yoke of oxen because money is so scarce, and cattle are so cheap that one can't get anything if he sells it.
Also, dear sister, tell me if Karl has married or not, and if Adolf has married.
Now, I'm closing my letter with a thousand greetings and kisses. I also send my regards to you, brother-in-law and sister, and I wish you a long life. I remain loyal to you unto death.
I also greet Wilhelmina, her husband, and their children, and I wish her good luck and as many blessings as there are raindrops. I wish her beautiful children as many blessings as there are roses on the stem.
I also greet Karl, Adolf, Gustav, Alvina, and all the others, and my children do the same.
Farewell, farewell from the Bastian family
P.S. I also greet old Uncle Otto and thank him in peace for his greetings. Even though our brothers and sisters who are in Russia don't think of of me, he didn't forget me. Therefore, I send my regards to him, his wife, and their children. I greet the Lehne and the Mari many times.

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