Letters from Rifka

  • traveling through Ukraine

    Rifka and her family ride on a train through Ukraine headed for Poland. They fled from Soviet Russia for fear of their lives.
  • Poland Border

    They reach the Poland border and are quickly ordered off the train. They are stripped and examined by a Polish doctor and then allowed back onto the train.
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    Typhus in Motziv

    Rifka and her family stop at a relatives in Motziv, Poland when Rifka becomes very ill. Soon the whole family, excluding her brother Saul, become ill as well and have to stay in Motziv until they heal. They have a deadly disease known as Typhus.
  • Train to Warsaw

    After being fully healed, Rifka and her Family ride a train on its way to Warsaw, Poland. Once there they plan on buying tickets to America. While riding the train Rifka meets a teenage girl with a baby. They talk and Rifka even braids her hair.
  • Bad News in Warsaw

    Once in Warsaw Rifka and her family go to buy tickets for America. Before being allowed to they have to be checked for diseases. Rifka is found to have Ringworm on her scalp and is not allowed to buy a ticket, yet the rest of her family is fully healthy and admitted onto the boat.
  • Headed to Antwerp

    Rifka heads to Antwerp,Belguim to get help for her ringworm from a Jewish help organization. She is very scared to be alone in a new place, the rest of her family bought tickets to America.
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    Rifka is given a home in Antwerp, and gets medical treatment daily. Her nurse is very kind and makes her feel better about being away from her family. For the first half of the time she stays in Antwerp, Rifka does not go anywhere other than to treatments and her bedroom. Eventually Rifka starts to explore Anterp and falls in love with it. In Septemper, she is cleared to buy a ticket to America, cured of her ringworm.
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    On a Boat to America

    Rifka boards a ship to America from a port in Antwerp. While traveling on thye ocean she meet a boy named Pieter and befriended him. Soon their friendship turned into something more. Sadly, one night Rifka's ship got caught up in a storm and Pieter was flung overboard. Rifka waqs sent into a deep sadness.
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    Ellis Island

    Rifka arrives at Ellis island in New York. She is very excited to finally be reunited with her family. First she must go through a examination process to make sure she is healthly. She is cleared of all diseases but is still temporarlily held on the island because her hair had not grown back from the treatment. While on the island, Rifka helped the nurses take care of sick people including a baby with Typhus. She befriended a young Russian peasant named Illya. Illya soon became attached to Rifka
  • Welcome to America!

    Illya and Rifka both have meetings with officials to determine whether or not they will be granted permission to enter America. They believe that Illya is a simpleton and that Rifka will be a burden on the government because her lack of hair. Both Illya and Rifka prove them wrong and they are granted permission into America. Rifka is finally reunited with her family and gets to live her dream.