Lettland für Reisende“Latvia for Travelers”, Latvian government brochure, ca. 1937.

Travel guide cover. The original measures 8 inches by 10 inches and contains fifteen pages.

Here is an official travel guide to Latvia—as indicated by its printer: Lettische Staatspapierdruckerei, Riga, L. Maskavas ielā 11., that is, the Latvian State Printers.

The guide does not indicate a year of publication; however, it does mention the year 1936, proudly announcing that the new Ķemeri sulphur baths spa sanatorium building had just opened, featuring all the latest facilities and amenities. That the war was only few years away makes these memories of Latvia's first period of independence all the more poignant. Ķemeri's subsequent history has been a microcosm of Latvia's. The invading Nazis pillaged the facility. The returning Soviets refurbished the facility, at first dedicating it to the recuperation of Red Army veterans, then later to become the spa of choice reserved for the Communist Party leadership and apparatchiks. Even today, twenty-five years after the collapse of the USSR, Ķemeri continues to be a favorite among Russian clientele.

We have made the guide available in both digitized and facsimile formats. Below, a gallery of photographs in the brochure.

Click on a thumbnail to view the picture. Mouse over the either side of the picture and click to navigate or use the left/right arrow keys.

Heldenfriedhof bei Riga.
Rīga military cemetery, Brāļu kapi.

Das Freiheitsdenkmal zu Riga.
Freedom Monument.

Tor zum Heldenfriedhof.
Gate to Brāļu kapi cemetery.

Gruppe vom Freiheitsdenkmal.
Group from the Freedom Monument

Der Rathausplatz zu Riga mit dem Schwarzhäupterhaus.
Town Square with the House of the Blackheads.

Die National-Oper zu Riga.
National Opera in Rīga.

Alt-Riga.
Old Rīga.

Im Rigaer Hafen.
Port of Rīga

Der Rigaer Zentralmarkt.
Rīga's Central Market

Frühling in Lettland.
Spring in Latvia

Herbstegen.
Autumn harvest.

Die Burgruine von Koknese.
Ruins of Koknese.

Lettische Jugend beim Volkstanz.
Latvian folk-dancing.

Erntezeit.
Harvest time.

Fischersleute vom lettischen Strand.
Coastal fishermen mending nets.

Volkstanz um’s Johannisfeuer.
People dancing around the bonfire.

Erntedankfest des lettischen Volkes
National celebration.

Sommer-Sonnwende in Lettland (23./24. Juni). (Das Lihgo-Fest.)
Summer solstice Līgo festival, 23-24th June.

(Train and plane routes to Rīga.)

Der Rigasche Strand (Rigas Jūŗmala)
Rīga beach

Der Rigasche Strand (Rigas Jūŗmala)
Rīga beach

Kurhotel im Moor- und Schwefelbad Ķemeri.
Ķemeri sanatorium, mud and sulphur baths

Ein Baderaum in der Kuranstalt von Ķemeri.
Spa bath room at Ķemeri

Sommer am Rigaschen Strande (Rīgas Jūŗmala).
Summer at the Rīga beach.

BLICK AUF RIGA
View of Rīga
...Timeline...Latvian Butter ExportsLettische Butter, National Butter Export Control of Latvia, 1929. Between the wars, Germany grew to become the largest customer for Latvia's prized butter exports. By 1928, the year prior to publication, Latvia was the 10th largest butter exporter in the world with 85% of its butter export going to Germany. Benenson's "Russia Today"Russia Today The Ottawa Citizen, 1931. Canadian émigré A. Benenson expresses alarm over Polish armaments and sorrow over Latvia's post-WWI de-industrialization in a letter to the editior from his new homeland. Freedom MonumentBrīvības Piemineklis (Freedom Monument), Jānis Siliņš. Brīvības Pieminekļa Komiteja, 1935. Art critic Jānis Siliņš' detailed discussion of the Freedom Monument, published by the Freedom Monument Committee. Stalin–Howard InterviewThe Stalin—Howard Interview. Friends of the Soviet Union, 1936. Roy W. Howard's interview of Joseph Stalin, March 1st, 1936, originally carried in U.S. and Soviet news media and subsequently published by the Friends of the Soviet Union under the provocative title J. Stalin—Is War Inevitable?. Reading between the lines and redaction by the Chief Censor of the Soviet Union, Stalin admits to not achieving Communism and resorts to memory lapses and protestations of absurdity when confronted with the USSR's failure to comply with its commitment to respect the U.S. First Arts & Crafts ExhibitionPirmās Latvijas Daiļamatniecības Izstādes Katalogs [The First Latvian Arts and Crafts Exhibition Catalog]. Valstspapīru Spiestuve, Riga. 1937.Essays on the exhibition and on aspects of traditional arts and crafts. In Latvian. B&W and color plates of exhibit objects. Latvia For TouristsLettland für Reisende, Latvian government tourist brochure, ca. 1937. Latvia sought to regain its pre-WWI stature as a tourist destination—its Gauja river valley having been known as the "Livonian Switzerland." The brochure features sights, activities, a brief history of Latvia, and information for German tourists. An ABC of Latvian OrnamentsLatvju Rakstu Ābecīte [An ABC of Latvian Ornaments]. Latviešu Bērnu Draudzības Savienība. 1939.A child's primer on the basics of Latvian ornaments and examples of how more complex forms are then constructed. In Latvian. Facsimile. Molotov–Ribbentrop PactMolotov-Ribbentrop Pact, 1939. Text of the secret protocol carving up Eastern Europe between Stalin and Hitler. The First Months of the WarThe First Months of the War, Mr. Munters Speaks at the University, 1940. Foreign Minister Vilhelms Munters' speech at the University of Latvia, asking, infamously : "I should like to ask, where now is the sovietisation against which we were warned...?" Letters on Birch Bark In Siberia Written Letters on Birch Bark, UNESCO Latvia. Birch bark was often the only material to write on. Background on deportations, the letters, and a gallery of photos. EXTERNAL SITE Holocaust in Latvia (HAOLUSA.ORG) Prof. Andrew Ezergailis' web site on the Holocaust in LatviaScholarship on the Holocaust in Latvia: essays, letters, reviews. Prof. Ezergailis is the pre-eminent scholar in this field. EXTERNAL SITE
"Lettland für Reisende" (Latvia for Travelers) is a publication of the Latvian government and therefore considered a work in the public domain. The version presented here qualifies as a protected derivative work under Latvian Copyright Law § 5. © 2017.

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