Sholem (Sol) Baskin #russia

Sam Wolff

I attach here a photo of what I was told is the Russian Red Army band. The clarinetist on the left is my wife's paternal grandfather, Sholem (Sol) Baskin (Bashkin?). He was born in 1881, either  on 7 Feb or 15 March, in Russia. His parents were Moshe Gedaliah Baskin and Miriam. Family lore puts his location in Pinsk or possibly Stolin. His trade was carpenter. He married an unknown spouse sometime around 1903; their son Meyer Baskin was born 14 June 1904. Later, on 15 Sep 1908 he married Gitel (Jennie) Gorovoy in Russia. He arrived in the United States on 28 May 1912. If anybody can confirm the uniform of the Red Army band and date the picture, or can shed light on Sholem and/or his family, I would be grateful.
Sam Wolff, Jerusalem (formerly Chicago)


I also have enigmatic Baskins in my tree. My great aunt Fanny married a Joseph Baskin (born abt 1885 in Russia, probably died in New York in 1952 and possibly known in UK as Sam). Their eldest son was named Hyman born 1909 and the second Myer, born in 1910 both born in London UK. Joseph disappeared and I assume went to New York to assess the situation and as far as I can find out never returned to his UK family. Fanny eventually remarried. Could this Joseph be related to your Sholem Baskin. The names are all so similar.

Alan Cohen


Hi Sam, 

If Sol Bashkin arrived in the US in 1912 then it is impossible to  have been in the Red Army. Unless he returned to Russia some time later. The Red Army was formed in 1917,after the October revolution. Most likely he was in the czarist army. 
Giannis Daropoulos 



Your wife's grandfather left the country 5 years prior to the revolution, which created the Red Army, so it must be the Imperial Russian army.

However, shoulder boards are visible on all uniforms, which Red Army didn't use between Dec 1917 and the middle of WWII.  This is an indication of Imperial Russian army.  If I'm looking at the right person in the photo, he was a private - there are no stripes on his boards, while the man next to him has a single stripe (Gefreiter rank), which is similar or just above of a private E-2 in US (NATO OR-2)

Mike Vayser

Karol Swanson

More elusive Baskins!
My husband's maternal g-m was called Dora Baskin. She was married to Louis Mendelssohn in Leeds, UK in 1896. He believes she was born in 1873, possibly in Russia. They ended up in Scotland. 
Does this ring a bell for anyone?
Karol Schlosser