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This is an except from an oral history with Norma Glass, where she explains how her mother's parents met.


Ah, yes, it’s a long story. I mean I only know snippets. She was the baby of the family. They obviously, like most fa… Jewish families, the, the eldest sister ended up in America, and they thought she would have been a millionaire. And, the reason that my grandmother came over was—well, its quite a long story really. Her husband, [pause] Henry Wyman, he, now he was Russian-Pole—you know, the borders changed. And, you know, in those days if a boy—I know it’s a bit round about but just to explain—when they were nine, they were taken into the Russian army for life. Well, he managed to escape. He escaped with a brother, and the brother drowned. He managed to survive. [Pause.] He was probably naughty because he could read and write because he came from a rabbinical family. And he used to write letters for another fellow in the army who had a sister in Cardiff.

And so, he would write letters from his friend, and then he would read the letters that returned. Anyway, what he did was, when he escaped, he wrote to this person’s address and said, “I’m coming.” Didn’t say who he was. Right? Anyway, he ended up in Cardiff docks. He couldn’t speak any English. The usual, with nothing, but there was somebody who understood the language he was speaking. And he ended up working for a miller, carrying bags of flour, and then, you know, somebody said, “There’s a lady in Penrhiwceiber, which—who—her, her husband died of that flu epidemic, and she’s left with all those children and she’s got a little business. Perhaps you could go and help her?’ So, he went, and he fell madly in love with this lady. But she said, “You don’t want me with all these children, you need a young woman. I have a sister in the heym, at home, and I will get her to come over.” Well when this older sister who lived in Penrhiwceiber left home, Mary—that was my grandmother—was a baby. And when she arrived in Penrhiwceiber she was six foot, very tall lady, and my grandfather must have been very, quite short. So, their engagement photograph is he is sit…, she is sitting, and he is standing. Right? So, it looks quite compatible. [Pause.] Yes, so that’s, that’s how. And she, when she was talking after this “Fiddler on the Roof,” she said, “I went to a station to get the train, like in the film, in, just out in the wilds.” And she said, “My mother baked some [pause] food for me in a bag, and I ate it all before I even got on the boat.” You know. And she, she said, “The boat journey was horrendous.” She forgot her Cyrillic. She couldn’t remember to write Cyrillic after she, when I knew her. But she was a highly intelligent lady, and she was feared by all the men that worked in the farm. They were frightened of Marie as they used to call her. She would get up at five o’clock in the morning to milk the herd, you know, incredible woman, incredible. I only wish I had as much strength, you know. She was amazing, [pause] quite a character.

Depository: The National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales.

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