Research Library is restoring the newspaper that connected two fates

25 June 2018

Staff of the Research Library are working on the restoration of an issue of the “Komsomolskaya Pravda” newspaper that was published in 1946. In one of the April issues that year, a note was published about a young woman, Muza Serebryakova, who after returning from the front entered the Tomsk Pedagogical Institute and dreamed of becoming a teacher of history. This issue fell into the hands of senior sergeant Viktor Zibarev. He kept the newspaper and after demobilization came to Tomsk and found the girl about whom “Komsomolskaya Pravda” had written.

- Muza went to the front at the age of 18, she took the oath at Stalingrad, - says Larisa Zibareva, head of the Laboratory of Phytochemistry at the Siberian Botanical Garden of TSU. - For 3.5 years of the war, she participated in the battles in the southwest, Stalingrad, 4th Ukrainian, and 1st Belorussian fronts and met the victory in Poland.

Upon her return from the front, Muza Serebryakova entered the Tomsk Pedagogical Institute. At the end of the first year, she passed all the exams with A marks. “Komsomolskaya Pravda” published her photo on April 27, 1946, with a quote: “I'm only 22 years old, but behind my shoulders are 3.5 years of hard military life. My cherished dream is to become a teacher of history...”

One of the readers of this issue was staff sergeant Viktor Zibarev. At that moment he had not yet returned home from the front, but when he saw the beautiful student, he noted that she was his countrywoman. Prior to the war, Victor had extramural education at the Faculty of Philology at Tomsk Pedagogical Institute. In June 1946, the senior sergeant demobilized, returned to his native city, and came to the Pedagogical Institute. In the admissions office, he saw the same girl from the newspaper, approached, asked: “Are you Muza?" and showed the April issue of the “Komsomolskaya Pravda”.

- The newspaper, which Viktor preserved, turned out to be crucial and linked him to Muza Serebryakova for the rest of his life, - says Larisa Zibareva. - After graduation, both became historians. She taught her favorite subject at the Transport Institute, then for more than 25 years worked as deputy director and director of TSU’s Research Library. Viktor became Doctor of Historical Sciences and a professor who taught history. On June 22, 2002, Muza Serebryakova was gone, but the "Komsomolskaya Pravda", which played so important in the fate of our family, we are still carefully saving. I want our descendants to pass it from generation to generation. Therefore, we are glad that the Research Library, which Muza Serebryakova gave many years of life to and which she loved very much, undertook to restore our family relic.

Veronika Zhuravleva, the head of the section of restoration and conservation of documents, is involved in the restoration of the newspaper. According to the expert, the work with “Komsomolskaya Pravda” is in the final stage.

- The copy of the newspaper that was sent to us was in a rather dilapidated state because for a newspaper, 70 years is a considerable age, - says Veronika Zhuravleva. - After mechanical cleaning and washing the sheet, the paper was neutralized and sized with a special solution. After this, manual restoration followed – replenishing losses (missing fragments) and strengthening gaps and creases. Now we are in the final stage, pressing, which takes about two weeks. After ageing the newspaper in the press, we will return a unique copy to its owners.