Lithuanian Deportees Mail
Five Frame Exhibit
Description: Prisons and GULAG slave labour camps didn’t have any post offices, special envelopes or postcards. These letters or postcards can be identified only by addresses on the envelopes or other markings (such as inscriptions and seals or numbers) on the envelopes. The letters were written on the first available piece of paper that sometimes had covered the previous erased text, on a reversed (re-glued) envelope, on family photographs or postcards brought from home, even on the birch bark. Most letters were written with a simple pencil and ink. Chemical pencils were prohibited. The places of exile lacked envelopes and paper. As there was a shortage of envelopes the letters were mailed folded into “triangles”, “rhombuses” or in self-made envelopes. The letters were made using pine needles or sewed with threads. Only a few letters have survived to date. There were also handmade postcards. In later years, simple, standard or artistic envelopes and standard postcards also were used.