The Ferrymen: Latvian refugees on their way to Sweden in Oral history testimonies


The paper reveals the events experienced at the end of the World War II in Latvia when many Latvians fled the Red army. One of the escape routes was via Baltic see to Gotland (Sweden) using fishing boats. The paper offers insight into life stories of three young men – Ēriks Tomsons, Pēteris Jansons and Laimonis Pētersons – who made this flight to Sweden possible. Their life stories tell about the circumstances that led them steer the boats of the resistance network, about their motives and challenges they faced. Oral history is like a bridge between the past and the present, academic research and everyday life. Life stories allow to look at events from the perspective of their participants and gives opportunities to study the individual and social aspects of historical processes and crises.

May 11, 2023
Konstanca (Rumānija)
Māra Zirnīte

Mutvārdu vēstures pētniece, Nacionālā mutvārdu vēstures projekta koordinatore

Maruta Pranka

Socioloģe, LU Filozofijas un socioloģijas institūta pētniece

Ginta Elksne

Socioloģe, LU zinātniskā asistente, strādā LU Filozofijas un socioloģijas institūtā.