We Didn't Ask Utopia: A Quaker Family in Soviet Russia

We Didn't Ask Utopia: A Quaker Family in Soviet Russia

We Didn't Ask Utopia: A Quaker Family in Soviet Russia

We Didn't Ask Utopia: A Quaker Family in Soviet Russia

Excerpt

Early in July 1936, at the Hotel National in Moscow, I met a young American doctor who was planning to bring his family to Russia and to live there for a time so that he and his wife could do their part in the struggle against preventable disease, which was one of the major problems of the Soviet Union. This book is the saga of the family adventure which followed; and I want to introduce Harry and Rebecca Timbres to its readers, as their history was told to me on that hot summer day under the shadow of the walls of the Kremlin.

Harry Garland Timbres was born in Missouri and brought up on a Canadian homestead in Alberta. He attended Leland Stanford University where he joined the Society of Friends, graduated from Haverford College in February, 1921, and sailed immediately to join the Friends' unit then operating in Poland.

Rebecca Janney was the daughter of a Quaker physician in Baltimore. She had attended Goucher College, Teachers' College (Columbia) and the Vassar Training Camp for Nurses (Philadelphia) in 1920. She, too, sailed for Poland early in 1921 to join the Friends' unit, and met Harry Timbres in Warsaw. The two young pioneers were married on March 24, 1922, by civil ceremony in the free city of Danzig, followed by a Quaker wedding in Warsaw.

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