Dukh-i-zhizniki  in America

An update of Molokans in America (Berokoff, 1969).  — IN-PROGRESS

Enhanced and edited by Andrei Conovaloff, since 2013.  Last update: 4 June 2018.  Send comments to < Administrator @ Molokane. org >
Original:  Molokans in America © 1969 by John K. Berokoff, 3478 East 5th Street, Los Angeles, California 90063, USA
Privately Printed by Stockton-Doty Trade Press, Inc. Whittier, Calif., 208 pages.

Contents   Updated 23 December 2017

Page number
Original page count by chapter

Review of Original Book
4 June 2018

|| 2
1 July 2016

Introduction: The Flight to the Refuge       
| 1
13 Nov 2016

Why Did They Wait So Long in Russia?
Why Did Most Stay Home?
2 Mar 2018
The Migration 11
|||||||||| |||||||||| | 21

The First Years 32
|||||||||| ||||||||| 19
11 May 2017
Attempts at Farming 51
|||||||||| || 12

The First World War 63
|||||||||| |||| 14

Post War Problems 77
|||||||||| |||||||||| ||||| 25
1 July 2016
Appearance of New Leaders 103
|||||| 5
The Second World War 109
|||||||||| |||||||| 18 1 July 2016
Aid to Brethren in Iran 138
|||||||||| 10 1 July 2016
Conclusion 148
||||||||| 10

Addenda — Petitions and Letters  157
|||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| | 51
10 July 2017

Photos  Added

Maps Cover
|| 2  inside

Review of Original Book

Click to ENLARGEMolokans in America, a book NOT about Molokans, was the first history book in English by a Dukh-i-zhiznik for American Dukh-i-zhizniki. Published in 1969, it was the last of several books by the late author and translator John Kereich Berokoff (1898-1972), and his only book with photos and tables.

The book is biased with many errors and omissions which have never been addressed on the scale presented here. It can be found in several libraries and online.
It's not about Molokans!

My main reasons for extensively correcting the book are:
  1. The title and labels are very misleading (Did I say it's not about Molokans?),
  2. Much unbiased history is needed with citations,
  3. Lack of visual aids, context and index, and
  4. Missing Addenda.
Though partially authoritative, the book was never a verified source, nor fact checked, nor scrutinized. Because many descendants of Dukh-i-zhizniki refer to this privately printed book for their history, and scholars often consulted and cited it as a reference which spread disinformation, this book needed to be extensively questioned, investigated, corrected and updated — historically revised. It's about Dukh-i-zhizniki, not Molokans.

This Review is a preface to a work in-progress that should be periodically checked for updates, time stamped above. Because so much of this history is forgotten, unclear, confused, and polluted with myth and rumor, the certainty of information here will be rated as fact, a correlation, or inference; and what data may be missing.

In Black Font the reader will find the original text, and in Red Font changes and comments, with hyperlinks to more information on the Internet. The current Russian alphabet is used, updating pre-1918 Russian texts. Square brackets are used for original footnotes, and added data. Simple HTML code is used for quick download and multi-platform accessibility on desktop and mobile computers.

About the Author

JOHN K. BEROKOFF (1898-1972) was born 16 February 1898 in the village of Voskresenovka, Erivan Governorate, Russia (now Lermontova, Armenia). He was the last of 12 children of Kiray Timofeyitch Berokoff. Their village neighbored Nikitino village, Yerevan guberniya, Russia (now Fioletovo, Republic of Armenia), the hometown of M.G. Rudomyotkin, founder of the Spiritual Christian Maksimist faith, and E.G. Klubnikin (Klubnikinist faith founder) who had a legendary boyhood vision about a land of refuge, also a popular theme among staroobriadsty.

Family oral history reports 3 immigrant Biryukov (Бирюков) brothers landing at Ellis Island, New York. When they saw long lines (queues) of people waiting, they decided to split into 3 lines thinking they will save time by finishing together. After processing they compared immigration documents. Each was given a different name in English — Berekoff, Berokoff, Berukoff. There was no standardized transliteration of languages at that time.
In 1907 the Berokoff family arrived in Los Angeles when John (Vanya) was about 9 years old. The Los Angeles City Directory, 1909 (page 148) shows his family address as Kire Berokov, 503 Turner street, in the crowded Bethlehem district among thousands of arriving and departing Spiritual Christians, a Jewish center, other
nationalities of "undesirable immigrants" (illiterate, unskilled, not from western or northern Europe), bars, prostitutes, drunks, migrant workers, homeless and destitute; and several settlement organizations serving immigrants from around the world and the poor.

Many Jews from Russia and Japanese lived in his "Bethlehem" neighborhood. A block south from his house across First street, was
the first east side Hebrew school and synagogue, Congregation Talmud Torah at 114 Rose St (1904-1910), which gradually moved to 247 Breed Street, and by 1923 built the largest Orthodox congregation west of Chicago, which Dr. Young may have attended.

Like his peers, J. K. Berokoff began full-time work about age 16, avoiding junior high school. His first job was in a reed furniture factory, probably downtown with other immigrants, who were taught reed weaving, rattan, furniture building and other sloyd trades in free vocational classes. His next job was collecting rubbish, which was a preferable profession among his peers because little education was needed and they had flexible hours allowing them to attend most all religious meetings (sobranie, holidays, funerals, etc.). ("John K. Berokoff (1971): 'The simpler our faith, the better it tastes,' "a 75 minute 2-part interview on CD with text introduction by James J. Samarin, 2001. Photo on CD courtesy Andrew J. Berokoff.)

When they moved east across the Los Angeles River into the "Flat(s)", his family attended Romanovskii sobraniya (also called: Klubnikin, Podval, Shubin), 114 S. Clarence street, next to the Klubnikin bakery, just south of First street in
"The Flat(s)." Named after Romanovo village, Kars Oblast, this congregation split into 3 faiths by the 1960s. The evolved original postoyannie congregation is now at 15052 Clark avenue, Hacienda Heights, with a branch in Oregon. Starii Romanovskii (Old Romanovsky) became "Blue Top", 322 Clela street. His family followed the Novie Romanovskoe (New Romanov) branch to 3553 Beswick street, nicknamed Freeway sobranie because it bordered a freeway; and in 2010 relocated 10 miles southeast to South Whittier. At least 3 congregations split from "Freeway" — one to South Australia before his death; and after his death, one each to Oregon and Porterville, CA. Berokoff's heritage Romanovka congregation divided the most (5+ times) of any of the diaspora Dukh-i-zhizniki faiths, which today all falsely claim to be the "true Molokan" faith.

In his youth he also attended the Young Peoples Meeting (molodoe sobraniya) which zealously embraced the Dukh-i-zhiznik ritual books, charismatic jumping, prophesy, and opposed both the U.M.C.A. (since 1926) and Y.R.C.A. (since 1941, 2 years after it was founded in 1939).

Berokoff lived close to the core population of Dukh-i-zhizniki and other Spiritual Christian groups on the East-side of Los Angles his entire life, where he had good exposure to most events and issues of his generation, and attempted to coordinate among conflicting congregations and clans during his controversial volunteer service with social scientists and as C.P.S. liaison during WWII. He was more self-educated compared to his peers, probably more fluent in Russian and English, and probably typed.

His exposure to social science research and historical documentation began in the mid-1920s when he, and probably others, assisted University of Southern California graduate student Pauline Young with her master's (1926) and doctoral theses (1928) resulting in her book The Pilgrims of Russian-town (1932). Young wrote in her Acknowledgements (page x): "Mr. John K. Berokoff has read the volume, made many corrections, and offered valued criticism. He has kept in touch with the study for several years." Young's publications about Pryguny and Dukh-i-zhizniki in America stood alone for 37 years until Berokoff's history book in 1969. This exposure undoubtedly launched his volunteer position as an amateur historian and an unofficial spokesman for his misunderstood faith(s).

He began to translate Dukh-i-zhiznik ritual books probably for his own use and to share with youth not Russian-literate and confused about their heritage, which they only learned from limited biased, and often conflicting, oral tales. It was said that he was concerned about his younger relatives and peers questioning their faith and history, about which he writes in Chapter 7, page 129: "
... they were not sufficiently indoctrinated." In 1941 he published his first legacy book, the previously translated 1915 Arizona Maksimist prayer book (molitvennik), with a preface explaining that since we are not returning to Russia this book is needed in English to educate the youth. During WWII, translations were needed to show the government that he represented faiths opposed to war, though 90% of the draft-able members enlisted.

Like many of his relatives and peers, whose parents and ancestors were wagon
drivers (drozhky, дрожки) in Russia, not irrigation farmers, he developed his own urban recycling business later in life, buying and re-selling kegs of nails. He had 5 children: Bill, Paul, Peter, Andy and Manya. His literacy probably motivated 2 of his sons to graduate college and pursue a teaching profession, unlike their most zealous peers whose families feared that higher education will turn believers into worldly "heathens" and "rob the Spirit." In the 1950s, he raised his family at 335 South State St, the west edge of Boyle Heights, within easy walking distance of The Flat(s), stores, schools, parks, a library, youth programs, and electric streetcars. In the 1960s, he moved to 3478 East 5th St, the east edge of Boyle Heights. He died May 1972 at age 74, 3 years after publishing this book.

During WWII, he volunteered to mediate with the government and a council organized by 3 peace churches regarding alternative military service, and was appointed secretary of the Los Angeles Dukh-i-zhiznik conscientious objector Advisory Committee. Though the committee members rotated, he steadfastly conducted nearly all its written business. His Committee report is all of Chapter 7 (18 pages).
20% of his book focused on WWII (18 pages of Chapter 7 + 16  pages in Addenda = 42 of 208 total pages). (Note 7 Addenda are missing.)

Berokoff's 1966 privately printed history book was first web-published in 1998 by me, after correcting the original for spelling and grammar errors, and enhancing with some clarifications, links, definitions and maps. Someone converted my scanned HTML text to PDF which was posted online by Daniel H. Shubin.

In the past decade, I found fascinating forgotten and censored history by exploring hints provided by Berokoff, like the failures of Cherbak, bride selling, colonizations, and unpaid $17,024 CPS debt. By researching his hints and conducting thorough research, much new material has been found, some of which has been added here to substantially clarify and improve the original book with an accurate title, which is being updated as time permits. In time, this project should evolve into several print and e-books.

Though Klubnikin was the founding presbyter and prophet of his congregation and faith in America, Berokoff concludes in his book, with regret and little explanation, that he did not completely fulfill the refuge prophesy of Klubnikin to flee Russia to live in an isolated rural community with co-religionists.

1.  The title and labels are misleading

My main criticism of Berokoff's history is the misnomer title and mislabeling of Spiritual Christian faiths. Though the book claims to be about "Molokans," Berokoff presents almost no information about the Molokan faith until the last Addenda letter (page 207), or about Molokan congregations in San Francisco and north of Sacramento, California. Only upon repeated questioning (page 203) by professor Piepkorn (an American- Russian scholar), does Berokoff admit that he does not know Molokan elders or rituals. Therefore, the book title: "Molokans in America" is false.

In the Addenda letters Berokoff documents the change of religious labels from WWI, through WWII and again in the 1960s. Only once in Addenda XXVII #7 does he confess "The title of our church body in Russian is: Dukhovnaye Christiani Pryguny" (page 203, 5th page from the last). After 1928 his Klubnikinist faith became a dukhovnye khristiane Dukh-i-zhiznik faith, which openly opposes the Molokan, Prygun and Subbotnik faiths, and the Armenian Dukh-i-zhiznik faith.

The major error was that the original book was NOT about Molokane, but somewhat about Dukhovnie khristiane pryguny (Духовные христиане пригуны : Spiritual Christian Jumpers) and historically related faiths (Maksimisty, Zionisty, Novie Israeli, Klubnikinisty. etc.), whose descendants established the Dukh-i-zhiznik family of faiths on the American west coast, mostly clustered in eastern Los Angeles County, and are properly collectively called Dukh-i-zhiz'-ni-ki (Дух-и-жиз'-ни-ки) after 1928.

Beginning in 1902 they called themselves the "Brotherhood of Spiritual Christians," which by WWI became the "Brotherhood of Spiritual Christian Jumpers," until their Kniga solntse, dukh i zhizn' was published. They are mixed descendants of Russians, Ukrainians, Armenians, Mordovians, Chuvash, Germans and other nationalities and ethnic groups who emigrated from the Russian Empire.
Again, Berokoff wrote a book about Dukh-i-zhizniki not Molokane, and people from Russia not Russians, which confused all the descendants of these immigrants and continues to confuse nearly everyone, including scholars and journalists, who widely propagated the false label by citing his book (1969) and Young (1932), and cite the citations.

In 1971 he incorrectly lectured to youth: "There is no significant difference between Pryguny and Postoyannie except the manifestation of the Holy Spirit;" while focusing on Rudomyotkin and the Dukh i zhizn' to define his faith. (Samarin CD.) He died the following year, in May 1972, buried at the "Old Cemetery."

Throughout his book, Berokoff consistently perpetuated the confusing misnomer that members of his faith are "Molokans" 451 times, an average of more than twice per page (451/208 = 2.2), while sparsely and inconsistently contradicting that they are "Spiritual Christian Jumpers", "jumping", or "Pryguny" 42 times. He reported the wrong faith 11
times more (451/42 = 10.7) than the correct former faiths!

Frequency Count of Selected Term Clusters
Label cluster*
Graph (each bar = 5)
Molokane (Molokans 435,
Postoyannie 15, Constant 1
|||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||||| |||||||
Pryguny 11,  Jump(ers,ing) 31
42 ||||||||
|||||||||| ||||||
|||||||||| |||
Spirit and Life
M.G. Rudomyotkin
E.F. Klubnikin
Semion Uklein

* Collection of closely related terms, a hard cluster, factor.

The terms Molokan and Postoyannie appear 15 times (
7 times in the body text, 8 in the appendix) before Berokoff is requested by Dr. Piepkorn to define it. After Berokoff incorrectly states it is a "branch of Molokany," he uses the word another 8 times in the last pages of his book trying to refine his erroneous definition.(Addenda XXVII, page 203 of 208 pages). He translated Postoyannie as "Constant" only once (Addenda XXX, last page), and never used Young's term : "Steady." Note that Uklein, the reported founder and organizer of Molokane, is only mentioned once (page 202), in response to probing by Dr. Peipkorn, compared to 56 times that Dukh-i-zhiznik prophets (Rudomyotkin, Klubnikin) are mentioned. Note that he mentions Klubnikin 24% ((13-25=6)/25) more times than Rudomyotkin, which suggests that Berokoff is primarily a Klubnikinist.

The original label used by these immigrants — Brotherhood of Spiritual Christians — is used about 1/6 as often as the confused terms listed above it in the table above (84/491 = .17).

Emphasis on Dukh i zhizn' topics (book, prophets, prophesies, etc.) is about double the Bible topics (111/64 = 1.7), therefore this book is about Dukh-i-zhizniki.  

A more comprehensive linguistic analysis is in-progress, to be shared with research partners and supporters.

2.  Much more unbiased research is needed with citations

My second criticism is that Berokoff did little research, was biased, and what few facts he cites typically lack sources. His comments are too often vague and general with no quantified data or references. No census counts or estimates are shown. No institutions are discussed in detail or listed except in Chapter 7 where he targets the congregations for failure to pay their C.P.S. camp bills. Shame!

His sources are limited, primarily to Kniga solnste, dukh i zhizn', the Sionskii pesennik (songbook) and his own oral history, particularly his knowledge and records and letters of conscientious objectors during both world wars. He skims through Russian history, briefly mentioning topics to set up his story, often with partial or no verifiable facts. Many topics are avoided, or censored.

My goal is to fill in these vast voids with relevant facts and citations.

It is puzzling that he did not mention or cite any of 7 periodicals published by his diaspora Dukh-i-zhiznik community before 1969, or his 3 published articles:
  1. Molokanskoe* Obozrenie (Молоканское Обозрение : The Molokan* Review, 1941-1949), including 2 of his own articles:
  2. The Flats Gazette (dates?)
  3. Сонце (Soltse : The Sun) — 4 editions, edited and published by Vasili Prokhanov, Los Angeles.
  4. Newsletters and mailings by the UMCA (The Molokan*)
  5. YRCA (The Anchor)
  6. CO camp newsletters (The Molokan*, 1942+
  7. Russian Molokan* Directory (1954, 1962), Paul A. Samarin, editor/publisher.
He did not mention any publications by Molokane in America:
  1. Вестник духовных христиан — Молокан : The Herald of Spiritual Christian Molokans (San Francisco, Sheridan CA, 1925+). This official Molokan publication was also not mentioned in Young's The Pilgrims of Russian-town (1932, 1967, or 1998).
  2. Отчет духовных христиан молокан .. 150-ти летнего юбилея .. указа .. июля 1805 года и 50-летнего юбилея .. в Соед. Штаты Америки, состоявшегося 22-23 и 24-го июля 1955 года в городе Сан-Франциско, Калифорния. – 199 с. (Report of Spiritual Christian Molokans .. 150 year anniversary .. of the decree of .. July 1805 and the 50th Anniversary .. in the United States, held 22-24 July, 1955 in San Francisco, California. 199 pages.) — On page 44, Berokoff refers to an article in this book, but cites neither the title of the article nor the correct book title.
He also omitted many relevant mis-labeled publications about Pryguny and/or Dukh-i-zhizniki published in the U.S., not written by the diaspora:
  1. "II. Statements as to conditions at the Disciplinary Barracks, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas," Political Prisoners in Federal Military Prisons, National Civil Liberties Bureau, New York. (1918). Pages 10-14 describe "Holy Jumpers" in brutalized solitary confinement.
  2. Speek, P.A. Russian Sectarian Peasants in the West, A Stake in the Land, (1921). Pages 24-33.
  3. Young, Pauline V.
  4. Day, George Martin. "The Russians in Hollywood: A Study in Culture Conflict," Ph.D dissertation, University of Southern California (1934). Compares Dukh-i-zhizniki with Russian Orthodox on pages 89-74.
  5. Maloff, Peter N. Dukhobortsy, ikh istoriia, zhizh' bor'ba (1948) Refers to Molokane in several places, chapter about Tcherback (Cherbak).
  6. Roher, Norman. "Molokans* from the Flats: Young Russians — American style," King's Business, October 1956, pages 40-41.
* Should be Spiritual Christian, or Prygun(y) before 1928, and Dukh-i-zhiznik(i) after 1928.
He should have had a copy of The Directory of Civilian Public Service, May 1941 to March 1947, by The National Service Board for Religious Objectors, 1947, or at least mentioned it. Nicknamed "The C.O. bible," the book listed all men on file who completed C.S.P. Alternative Service, showing address, camps, dates, religion, and occupation.

He ignored and omitted the Selective Service Act of 1948, and federal court cases of 6 Dukh-i-zhiznik conscientious objectors (Kariakin and Kalpakoff 1954, Chernekoff 1955, Klubnikin 1956, Dalmatoff and Prohoroff 1958).

Though public libraries had 100s of relevant newspaper articles and books, and more oral history was abundant from living immigrants, he only referred to one 1969 Los Angeles Times article (Chapter 1, page 17) about a meteor shower in Mexico, which appeared just before publication of his book; and he never named an elder he quoted besides Klubnikin. His passing emphasis on a recent meteor shower suggests its mystical-spiritual importance, which I examine on the same page using astronomical data.

It may be due to his limited elementary education that he did not know how to mine the library, cite references, how to conduct interviews, was hiding his project, was influenced by proofreaders and/or assistants, or the facts were so embarrassing that he chose to censor his own book as he apparently did with The Pilgrims in Russian-town. He apparently did not ask anyone with good literary skills to help him, though several (including many college students and graduates) could have helped with research or proofreading. Notably absent is Paul I. Samarin, who collected information about Molokan history at the Los Angeles Public Library, published it in the phone Directory with references, and lectured about his findings at the U.M.C.A. Wednesday Night gatherings in the 1950s. Perhaps Berokoff was promoting his own independent history of his particular Klubnikinisk Dukh-i-zhiznik faith.

He missed so much relevant history and could have correlated events. For examples:
The above omissions provide hints about Berokoff's scope of knowledge, interest, and understanding; and about his preference to report "our" (nash, Klubnikinist) history as "my history," not "their" (ne nash) history. He could have reported much more and correlated several events with plausible effects or parallels, and/or likely outcomes, like:
Instead, his analysis initially focuses on failed religious prophesies, then the shameful C.P.S. financial fraud, and concludes that urban diaspora Dukh-i-zhizniki should seek refuge elsewhere, "away from the world's turmoil and its temptations." Though he testified to be a follower of Klubnikin (Klubnikinist), he remained in Los Angeles in a house, attended meetings (sobranie), and was buried in 1972, age 74, in a cemetery near Klubnikin — ironically all adjacent to freeways.

3.  Lack of visual aids, context and index

My third wish is for more historic, economic and social context; and more graphic and accurate reader aids (maps, charts, lists, section labels); and, an index. A comprehensive list of why only 1% migrated greatly expands the Introduction below. The original inside-cover map by Shubin is very crude and some villages have multiple names, not shown. Simple maps showing the migration paths, neighborhoods, assemblies and colonies would have greatly orientated the reader; and are being inserted as time permits. When I posted this book in 1997, I added rough maps scanned from my mislabeled 1980 Молокан Directory and photos taken in 1939 by Alex Serguiff. I posted them on my mislabeled website (molokane.org). Since then, from my travels and collaboration with Spiritual Christians around the world, many of the emigrant Spiritual Christian villages are now mapped in Google Earth in digital color (in-progress).

A major study aide is the 1995 map insert: "Dukh-i-zhiznik Molokan Colonization, Russian Town, The Flats and East Los Angeles" by Kornoff and Mohoff (1995), in A Stroll Through Russiantown (Mohoff and Valoff, 1996); but this map, produced 26 years after Shubin's map, erroneously places 2 of 3 items shown in the Bethlehem district (6, 86) and omits several places forgotten in their oral history.

While a paged index is planned for the published version of this draft, this version is somewhat hyper-linked, with added section headings
to aid navigation.

4. Missing Addenda

Some of Berokoff's document collection is shown as Addenda, of which 7 of the 30+1 numbered items are missing with no explanation for omission or non-sequential numbering. The 51-page Addenda comprise 25% of the pages of his 208-page book, indicating how important he felt they were for the community public record, especially since it is printed in relatively large 12-point sans-serif font.

If the
Addenda were so important to comprise a fourth of the pages, why are 7 missing (8, 10, 12, 20, 24, 26, 28) and 1 added (6a)? Why are they all sequential odd-numbered pages? Why are there references to 3 misnumbered Addenda on page 125? Where they omitted : (1) due to censure, (2) to save money, fewer pages, (3) due to adding 8 photos, or (3) by blunder, a mistake?

A last minute censure can explain why the 7 Addenda numbers are missing, and one added (6a, VIa). But, why weren't the Addenda numbers re-sequenced? Could it have been to save money, or because photos were added late? I don't think this was an absentminded blunder. Which other reason (1-censure, 2-economy, 3-photos) is most likely?

A hint can be found by examining how this book was physically assembled. Books are printed in sections (many pages on large sheets) called signatures, which are folded, collated, sewn and glued together, trimmed, then glued into a cover. A major cost consideration is to not waste blank pages and print a minimum number of large signatures, to save press time. Signatures typically have 2n pages (2, 4, 8, 12, 16, 32) mechanically folded from large 2-sided prints. It is most economical to publish books of this size in 32-page signatures.

This book was printed in 8 signatures, of which 6 were 32 pages, and the 4th signature was 16 pages with an 8-page signature (#5 in table below) of photos on glossy paper inserted without page numbers, making a 24-page combined (16+8) signature. The photos are stitched in the middle of the book witout page numbers. The book has 208 page numbers, with text on the last page, which indicates that no pages were wasted. Numbering began on first signature page 9, not on the text page 1, which indicates that signatures and page counts were scrutinized, but things added, probably in haste, without updating pages numbers.

Signature Sizes and Pages
 Size (pages) 
 Page Numbers
1, 2
2, 3, 4
4, 5
5, 6, 7
7, 8
8, Addenda
* Signature 5 was inserted into signature 4 for stitching in the middle, with 3 signatures stitched on each side of the middle.

The table shows the signatures with corresponding page numbers and chapters. Because the last printed page is 208 and there are no blank pages at the end, suggests that Addenda were deleted in haste due to economy, to squeeze in as much as possible into the last signature. It seems that the Addenda were assembled last and the extra pages were discovered perhaps at the print shop during layout. It appears that Berokoff made a last minute decision whether to print an extra signature of 8 pages at the end, which the publisher would not like, or remove items to fit the last 32-page signature. It was too late and expensive to re-typeset all the Addenda in smaller 10-point font, or match the font used in the text, or even to renumber them in sequence.

Were the 8 photo-pages added after the book was written, or planned from the beginning? Photos are in the exact middle (between pages 104 and 105), without page or photo numbers. There are no text references where expected to any photo, and some photos are not related to any text. This suggests the photos were added probably during beta-reading and proofreading. The printer may have adjusted his cost estimate to include the photos on an 8-page signature on glossy paper, if the middle (#4) signature was reduced from 32 to 16 pages, and the photos were inserted as a signature. Maybe the printer added it for no extra cost. This would reduce the entire book by 8 pages and explain why 6 Addenda were removed.

More hints appears in the "Contents" list (page 5, no number). After "Addenda .. 157", the section "Petitions .. 177" appears, but not the section "Inquiry of Prof. Arthur Piepkorn ..." (page 192). The label on every odd-numbered page after 157 is titled "Addenda". The section for Petitions does not appear at the top of the odd-numbered pages after page 177. This suggests that Berokoff was arranging these documents in sections (Addenda, Petitions, Inquiry ..) and exceeded his last 32-page signature. Oops! Had all these documents been typed in a smaller font, there probably would have been space to include all or most of the missing 7 items. Probably in haste and frustration, he and the printer decided to "just do it, as is" rather than find and correct all errors, to comply with the printer's contracted scheduled print date — the deadline.

The mystery of 7 missing Addenda appears less likely due to censure, and more likely due to photos squeezing out space for the large-font Addenda. Though the missing items were probably judged not as important as those published, it would be interesting to see what is missing.

Biased History book for 60 years

Despite the misleading title and weak biased content, Berokoff's book, which appeared 37 years after Young, stands alone as the only diaspora-produced history of Dukh-i-zhizniki in the Americas since Young's work in the late 1920s and 1930s (thesis, dissertation, books, articles) up to 1991 (when Wren was published), spanning almost 60 years. His book served as a prejudiced rough draft of his version of this history up to 1969. There is no public archive of his papers to definitely locate the 7 missing items in the Addenda, or to add what he omitted. (A single 1971 recording by James J. Samarin will be posted here with transcript.)

Among the many significant historical facts and tales Berokoff displays, the most revealing is his 5-page summary financial report showing that their 74 
Dukh-i-zhiznik conscientious objectors during WWII (compare to 600+ who enlisted) failed to pay half (46%) of their C.P.S. camp bill (~$17,000), then refused to resolve the matter with a visiting representative of the National Service Board of Conscientious Objectors. The extent and detail which Berokoff reports this breach of contract suggests that exposing the scandalous C.P.S. debt was a major purpose for publishing his book, comprising 20% of the pages, though not mentioned in his Forward. It appears he really intended to blow the whistle about his deadbeat brethren before he died.

Why did he omit the C.P.S. debt in his Introduction? One explanation may be that a characteristic of Dukh-i-zhiznik oration is to lead with a minor neutral topic to get the listeners' attention, delaying one's major point until the end, changing to the intended topic(s). Berokoff does this
oral history bait and switch by burying his C.P.S. debt report in Chapter 7. His C.P.S. report is enhanced to show the huge scandalous extent in which Dukh-i-zhizniki financially cheated the 3 major American peace churches that negotiated for and arranged the C.P.S., while remaining steadfast (postoyannie) in refusing to pay their own C.P.S. debt today and hiding behind a false label. 1000s of their archived documents have been collected to complete this story when time permits.

Unfortunately the misleading "Molokan" label and erroneous "facts" have been widely propagated by scholars citing Young and Berokoff. Though both authors identified their subjects as Pryguny, and specifically as Spiritual Christians who use the book Dukh i zhizn', together they obscured those two groups with over 1500 repetitions of the word "Molokan" in print. This label dis-information was so extensive that it appears intentional, perhaps to diffuse attempts by zealots in government from further investigating and/or deporting them. Young and others testified in government hearings and during investigations to defend the most zealous Spiritual Christians (to be added). Her protective propaganda caused Spiritual Christian history and faiths to be scrambled for generations.

After Berokoff was published

Ironically, Berokoff himself was bullied by a few of the most zealous Dukh-i-zhizniki, including several of his relatives, for publishing his translations: Selections from the Book of Spirit and Life (1966) and history (1969), among other reasons which they cannot articulate, like whistle-blowing about deadbeats, speaking at the U.M.C.A., and corresponding with other faiths (ne nashi). Though most readers greatly appreciated his books, several descendants of J.K. Berokoff still hate him for exposing "their religion" to the world, which they believe to be a sin (apostasy). They did not know that soon after publication in 1928, their Kniga solnste, dukh i zhizn' and related holy ritual books were placed in several libraries, including the National Library of Congress, and never were a secret from the U.S. or Soviet governments.

The next Dukh-i-zhiznik-produced history appeared 32 years later in 1991 (A.F. Wren, True Believers…) using the same misleading faith labels, and no citations. For more than 70 years after Young, only these 2 member-produced books (Berokoff and Wren) existed in a few public libraries along with several scholarly papers, theses and dissertations by "outsiders" (ne nashi). Then many works by Dukh-i-zhizniki appeared (Babashoff, Mohoff, Samarin, Shubin, Slivkoff, Valov, etc.), as their fear of self-publishing somewhat attenuated. Unfortunately, all these recent publications further abused the Molokan label, have many errors and omissions, lacked citations and should be similarly edited as time permits. In short, very little of the material published in the 1900s (20th century) in English was correctly labeled, which affects all citations. What a mess of history.

The U.M.C.A. newsletter (1950s-2000s) was entirely mislabeled and controlled over time by different factions of Dukh-i-zhizniki with opposing agendas. The final 3 decades were entirely controlled by one family of editors who falsely believed: "Whatever Molokanism is, I am in the center of it." (Quote from William Alex Federoff, early 1970s.) The newsletter published sparse information about Dukh-i-zhizniki, censored openness, and silently expired in 2007 after authentic Molokane organized in Russia with official journals. Now western Dukh-i-zhiznik communication is limited to member-only e-mail lists and discussion boards, all mislabeled and functioning as closed secret societies protecting a false identity.

U.M.C.A. invasion
In the 1940's, Dr. Pauline V. Young was working on a sequel to her 1932 book Pilgrims in Russian-town to report that these Spiritual Christians, whom she earlier assumed would assimilate in Los Angeles, were being revitalized by their own American-educated youth. She did not realize that while members of the various Spiritual Christian faiths she studied were integrating and assimilating, the Prygun congregations were converting to various Dukh-i-zhiznik faiths which persisted, and generally rejected non-believers in their new faiths unless they were wealthy.
Unfortunately her working papers were destroyed in a fire at the International Institute in Los Angeles, and the book was never completed. Dr. Young wanted to document how youth trained at the Young Russian Christian Association (Y.R.C.A.) and the Bible Institute of Los Angeles (B.I.O.L.A.) enhanced the United Dukh-i-zhiznik Molokan Christian Association (U.M.C.A.) with improved management, programs and publications, causing attendance to grow for 20 years. In the mid-1960s, U.M.C.A. Sunday School book purchases, an indicator of attendance, peaked at rank 10 in the country, 3rd in California

Young died in 1977 before the most zealous
Dukh-i-zhizniki who hated the U.M.C.A. took full control of the non-profit corporation and property in the 1980s, converting it into their private school and territory. In contrast to Young's appraisal, Berokoff (page 97) presents the U.M.C.A. teachers (not identified as Y.R.C.A.-ers) as heretics of his Dukh-i-zhiznik faith. Not mentioned is that Berokoff's zealous peers, indoctrinated at the Young Peoples' Meeting (Molodoi sobranie), hated the Y.R.C.A.-ers who bought a building in The Flat(s) to hold their club meetings and socials, had about 25 members educated at  B.I.O.L.A. (free tuition before 1959), had a library, and were invited to administer the U.M.C.A., which rapidly grew for 20 years. Partially due to Berokoff's history book and his son Peter, who became a teen boy's U.M.C.A. Sunday School teacher in the mid-1960s, substantial numbers of zealot Dukh-i-zhizniki invaded the U.M.C.A. to evict those whom they perceived to be Americanized heretics of their various Dukh-i-zhiznik faiths.

The 20-year (1962-1982) takeover of the
U.M.C.A. by zealous Dukh-i-zhizniki followed by their 1985 Satanic ritual abuse media frenzy caused the Sunday School attendance to plummet more than 95%, greatly reduced regular attendance in all diaspora Dukh-i-zhiznik congregations, and closed their doors to outsiders, including Molokane, for most events. In 2017, part of the Heritage Room was closed during the U.M.C.A. Picnic, perhaps to prevent non-believer guests (ne nash) from seeing what may not be considered holy relics, though their store was open. 100 years after immigration from Russia (2004), most of the descendants of these Spiritual Christians, subjects of this book, assimilated, fled or were expelled from Dukh-i-zhiznik faiths by zealots, leaving a total faith-practicing diaspora smaller than the number who immigrated from Russia.

Highgate Road Social Science Research Station (H.R.S.S.R.S.)

In the 1960s, Dr Stephan P. Dunn and Ethel Dunn, a husband and wife team of social scholars of the Soviet Union who lived near Berkeley, CA, incorporated their own non-profit organization. They called it their
Highgate Road Social Science Research Station (H.R.S.S.R.S.) after their street. Both were educated at Columbia University, New York, then learned Russian and specialized in translating social science articles into English for publication. Dr. Stephan P. Dunn's doctoral adviser was Dr. Margaret Mead. After they became interested in Spiritual Christian history, they were surprised to discover Molokane in San Francisco, and made friends with the congregation. That led to expeditions to Southern and Central California, Oregon, Canada, and a focus on everything about the diaspora groups including networking with Berokoff.

In the 1970s, historian Ethel Dunn asked Berokoff: "... what a Dukh-i-zhiznik Molokan is, to which he answered: 'A Dukh-i-zhiznik Molokan is a person who sings the psalms.' When asked to elaborate, he added that when Dukh-i-zhizniki Molokans no longer sang the psalms in their services, they would cease to be Dukh-i-zhizniki Molokans." From this exchange Ethel realized she must understand psalm-singing, but neither she nor her husband were musical, nor did they know any Russian

Berokoff's reply was far too simple. He should have further specified: ".. only in our Los Angeles style and dress, only sung in our Southern Russian dialect as we speak it, by men in long beards who perform our rituals, with jumping and raising both arms exactly as we do and when we do, who are accepted by us as full members of our congregation(s), intermarry with us, and meet with us often." Evidence of his social introversion and exclusion is revealed on page 97 were he says at the end of item 1: ".. such conduct .. should be stopped." The rest of the story reveals what Berokoff omitted when he published his warning.

Though psalm-singing (hymn-singing) in Russian is characteristic of all Spiritual Christians, and in most languages by all Christian, Muslim and Jewish faiths around the world, of which Berokoff had practically no knowledge, his very simple mislabeled definition motivated Ethel Dunn to find a Russian ethno-musicologist, and in 1980 to apply for a research grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). She proposed to publish a book titled: "The American Molokans as an Ethnic and Religious Group" (RS-*2061-80), but never realized that she focused on non-Molokans.

Unfortunately, the Dunns failed to produce the book by spending most of the money to study singing. (How the money was wasted — in-progress.) With my volunteered help, the H.R.S.S.R.S. only produced the chapter about singing. Berokoff's 1970s definition of "Molokan" was published in O'brien-Rothe, Linda, Ph.D. The Molokan Heritage Collection Vol, IV: The Origin of Molokan Singing,
H.R.S.S.R.S., 1989, page 1. Now we know that this book should have been titled: The Spiritual Christian Collection Vol. IV: The Origin of Dukh-i-zhiznik Singing.

In 1973, a master's thesis by W.B. Moore, Molokan Oral Tradition (U.C. Berkeley), with Dunn's guidance, was published which caused a
huge oral backlash among zealous Dukh-i-zhizniki, including false reports about Berokoff's widowed daughter-in-law. Lingering hostility and fear erupted when zealots heard that a ne nash researcher (Dr. O'brien-Rothe) had interviewed elder singer Misei Volkoff, and they raided his house the next day to confiscate his huge tape collection against his will and "protect it" from ne nashi. This delayed O'brien-Rothe's research on singing for a year, until she was given cassettes of 300 songs recorded by Dukh-i-zhizniki in Australia.

To lessen objection to Dr. Obrien-Rothe's pioneering work, I insisted on having her first draft anonymously proofread by a wide group of elder Dukh-i-zhiznik singers and potential critics who had been slandering the Dunns and Dr. Moore for a decade. It happened that the survey was primarily administered to members of the late Berokoff's congregation (Noviye Romanovskii sobranie, Freeway assembly, Beswick street church), and to singers of other congregations, by elder Jack Peter Ocip. Valov who was quite impressed with the draft. He volunteered to assure that this new research would be scrutinized, for the historic record, and collected all comments. The comments submitted showed a broad multidimensional spectrum of attitudes about outsiders doing research on "their" sacred songs, from full agreement and understanding to absolute disgust by one person, some unable to understand the point, and some initially hostile who changed their minds after reading and discussing with other readers. The results were summarized with responses by the author and included in one version of the book. (To be posted.) The process of open proofreading and a summary report apparently melted most of the zealots' opposition to research and documentation.
Valov later coauthored and edited books with George Mohoff, while others like Babashoff, Baghdanov and Shubin, published their own books, and a MA thesis by Slivkoff appeared. But when Dr. Breyfogle's was invited to Los Angeles to present his book and research in 2005, the Dukh-i-zhiznik controlled U.M.C.A. board issued a verbal order prohibiting all thesis about their faiths, as if they were an Imperial council of the Tsar Dukhov (King of the Spirits) issuing an ukaz (decree, order) upon academia.

This book in-progress is also open to you as a volunteer beta-reader to comment as it is being edited and composed. Check back often for changes and updates. E-mail : Administrator (at) SpiritualChristians.org.

In many ways, the Dunn's body of work facilitated young social scientists around the world to analyze the previously under-reported non-Doukhobor Spiritual Christians from Russia — Americans (Breyfogle, Clay, Hardwick, 2 Moore's), Australian (Slivkoff), Russians (Inikova, L'vov, Mazo, Nikitina, Panchenko, Petrov, Samarin, Zhuk), Armenian journalists (Grigorian, Mangasaryan). I met most, and have been in contact with all.

I last spoke with Ethel Dunn about 2002, and suspect she died about 2004 and was cremated to join her late husband. This updated book in-progress can serve as a short sample of the book the Dunns wanted to produce, a project I assisted for most of the 1980s and hope to finish some day, with much more information than imagined 30 years ago, about Spiritual Christians in North America.

When the 3 labels for these 3 Spiritual Christians faiths
— Molokane, Pryguny, and Dukh-i-zhizniki — are untangled and properly used with verified facts, as shown in this text, their individual histories and identities become much clearer.

— Andrei Conovaloff, Arizona, USA.

Foreword   [Contents]

PAGE 7 There are numerous reasons why the life of the Dukh-i-zhizniki Molokan people in America deserves to be recorded in a book but the most important, perhaps, is the probability that the third and fourth generation American Spiritual Christian Dukh-i-zhizniki Molokans are unacquainted with the real reason for their forefathers' emigration from Russia or how they managed to survive as a community for over sixty years up to 1969 in a large city abundantly supplied with various worldly temptations.

It is also possible that they do not know why the United States of America was chosen as a place of settlement in preference, say, to Canada or to South America and how it came about that they chose urban life in Southern California instead of remaining on the Eastern seaboard as millions of other immigrants did.  They also do not know why their grandparents failed to obey prophesy to return to Russia, to go east, or failed to form large isolated farming communes.

What was their life in Los Angeles like as a zealous minority that they clung together in one close knit neighborhood while most Spiritual Christians along with other nationalities scattered to become assimilated in the local population? Insisting, for religious reasons, on wearing full beards and their peasant clothes in the face of ridicule while most Spiritual Christians along with other nationalities conformed to local customs; periodically dropping everything to attend the funeral of a relative, a friend or a respected elder church dignitary, quitting their jobs twice a year to observe their daytime* week long holidays plus three other one day religious observances, they yet managed to support their very large families without admitting to taking public charity or assistance from [outside, ne nash] non-Molokan sources. 

* Probably after WWII, "Big Church" decided to accommodate members who could not take leave from day jobs by holding 2 services a day, or evening services on weekdays, during extended holidays. The most zealous congregations refused to adopted such a flexible holiday schedule, to remain constant (postoyanniye : постоянние) with their rituals (obryady : обряды).

To assimilated descendants of Spiritual Christians Molokans born and raised since the end of the second World War, this accomplishment may not seem very impressive because the continuous prosperity and full employment of the last 25 years [1944-1969] would lead them to believe that it was always thus, but in fact, during the first ten years of their PAGE 8 life in America [(1904-1914)] the [Spiritual Christians] Molokans were subjected to periods of unemployment when the bread winner of the family considered himself very fortunate if he worked an average of four days a week at [$1] $2.00 per day as casual laborer in a lumber yard. How did they do it?

Credit Captain P. A. Demens (Dementsov : Деменцов) for guiding them to L.A., falsely rebranding them all as "Molokans" and giving many jobs in his nearby laundry and lumber yard, and finding other jobs for many.

This book attempts to answer some of these questions. It is a narrative based on personal observations, on notes, letters and documents in the writer's possession as well as on information gathered from many anonymous persons who are old enough to have personally experienced the history of the [Dukh-i-zhizniki] Molokans in America. It is a story of a people who were and are somewhat unique among all the ethnic groups in the Los Angeles area.

Introduction — The Flight to the Refuge*     [Contents]

PAGE 9 Prophecies of [Prygun] Efeem Gerasovich Klubnikin** (1842-1915) concerning the coming of World Wars and their after effects, written in his youthful years in the village of Nikitino Nikitina, Russia*** in 1855 or thereabouts. He was buried in East Los Angeles, Califronia.

     * Though a major theme in his book, these terms (flight, refuge) are not exactly defined by Berokoff. Their meanings and translations can be interpreted by his context and experience with believers and followers.
         — "Flight", or journey (Russian: pokhod: поход), is revealed in examples for destinations from Russia to California and Western states, Mexico, South America, Iran then California, and Australia from California, and back to Russia from everywhere. But the flight back to Russia has not happened. This term in context is similar to the Svobodnik (Freedomite) term: trek (Russian : трек), journey [by foot, and back to Russia]. Both groups have spiritual songs about pokhod and trek. See my edited version of: Moore, Willard B. "Communal Experiments as Resolution of Spiritual Christian Sectarian Identity Crisis," University of California, Berkeley.
         — "Refuge" (Russian: ubezhishche : убежище) appears to be where Klubnikin and Berokoff settled and were buried — Los Angeles County. In the final sentence on his last page 155, Berokoff implies this is the "first refuge
," as he encourages "... emerging younger leadership to ... search for a second refuge ..." This term appears in context similar to the Anabaptist German term: bergungsort ("place of refuge" : to escape [from restrictive legislation], or [obey God's call and come to the] place of salvation [to be saved]); more than: sammlungsort : ("place of refuge" : a meeting place [with God], a tabernacle). Comparable Russian terms could be: сокрытие (concealment, hiding, escape), and место сбора (gathering place, venue, sobranie). Anabaptist scholars compiled a document archive and bibliography about their Central Asia trek, c a. 1880, and I list and link to their most relevant material online to show Dukh-i-zhizniki how their pokhod originated from Anabaptists who migrated to Russia from Germany in the 1800s.
  **  For Spiritual Christians who retained their ancestral Southern Russian dialect, Gerasovich must be pronounced Herasimovich.

***  Nikitino village, Yerevan guberniya, is now named Fioletovo, Armenia, where in the year 2000 there are about 4 separate Dukh-i-zhiznik congregations and
one Molokan congregation.

Pages 636 and 651, Book of the Sun, Spirit and Life  (Kniga solntse, dukh i zhizn' ; Книга солнце, дух и жизнь).

Story, Tale 2. ПОВЕСТЬ 2.  О взятiи съ земли мира
"Kings will go to war with China. From the time of the war in China, peace will be taken from the earth. [2] There will be powerful wars in the East. From the time of the war in the East the wrath of God will spread throughout the whole earth.
Пойдут цари воевать на Китай, с Китайской войны миръ будет взять с земли. 2. На востоке будет сильная война; смешается кровь с водою, и с восточной войны разольется гнев по всей земле,
[3] There will be great groaning and crying of peoples, blood will flow everywhere. Great misfortunes and agitation among the peoples; tortures, torment and persecutions. [4] People will fly in all directions; to mountains, caves, forests and to different countries. [5] Separations of father and son, mother and daughter, husband and wife … 3. Будеть великий плачь и стон народов, кровь нещадно прольется повсеместно, настанеть великое бедствие и волнениe в народах: мучения, скорб, казнь и претмснения.  4. Великое бегство по всем местам: в горы, ущелья, лмса и въ иныя земли.  5. Разлука отца с сыном, матери съ дочерью, мужа съ женою.

*      *     *      *

Story, Tale 2. Song about the journey ПОВЕСТЬ  22.   Песнь о noxoде.
"Let us sing loudly a song about the flight to a place of refuge. [2] The Lord has sent His angels with trumpets to all the people; to go, to go on a journey, to remove themselves from worldly worry.
Воспоемъ громкую песнь, о походе въ место убежища !
2. Господь послалъ Ангеловъ съ трубою, возвеститъ всему народу; итить, итить в поход,-удалиться от миpcкихъ забот!

[3] We shall stand firmly on our feet, the Lord will give us His help. He is our joy and our strength.
3. Станем твердо на ноги, Господь дасть нам помоги. Онъ-радость и крепость наша.
[4] A herald is flying from heaven, his command is to prepare us for a journey (pokhod). [5.] Angels are released to torment and to punish harshly everyone throughout the universe". 4. Вестник с неба летитъ, собираться в поход велитъ. 5. Решаются Ангелы, на жестокую казнь и мучение, повсеместно, по всей вселенной.

Why did they wait so long in Russia? 
Why did 99% stay in Russia?

Why did the non-Doukhobor Spiritual Christians in the Caucasus (Pryguny, Maksimisty, Molokane, Subbotniki, Zionisty, Novyi izrail', …) wait 50 years after Klubnikin's prophesy to migrate, until after 1900? And, why did less than 1% of them move to the Americas? What is real, and what is myth?

Oral history simply repeats that they left Russia to avoid war and injustice, and for the most zealous to follow prophes(y, ies). Here I try to present the broader context, clustered in chronological order, of some of the many changing geopolitical, economic, sociological and religious events that could have caused 1% to leave while 99% stayed home. (Check for updates. Submit your own missing alleged reasons.)

  1. no arrangement for mass exodus was arranged as done for Doukhobors in 1898 to Canada,
  2. no huge free tract of tax-free land was given in America for communal colonization as done in Russia or Canada, though large tracts of land were offered for adjacent homesteading in Hawaii and for purchase in California, Mexico, Texas, and other states.
  3. improved economic policies and religious freedom in Russia,
  4. prophesies to stay in Russia (false prophesies to leave, or instead go east or south),
  5. huge 100-year celebration in 1905 of religious freedom for Molokane (other faiths joined in celebration) in Russia, and
  6. negative reports mailed from the U.S.A. and delivered in person by those who returned from the U.S.A.

Though many factors prompted non-Doukhobor Spiritual Christians to migrate from the Caucasus among the wave of Eastern Europeans to North America around 1900, the oral history of each Spiritual Christian family that immigrated to California reports different reasons for their ancestors' journey. Berokoff began his book (above) with parts of the Klubnikin prophesies beginning about 1852, then discusses just a few of the many possible reasons for migration. Following is a somewhat chronological comprehensive list of clustered likely factors which could have affected their migration from Russia to California, contrasted with plausible reasons why the vast majority (99+%) stayed home in Russia.

Reasons  TO  Leave — Why  1%  went to the Americas.

  1. Economic
  2. Personal / Religious
  3. War
  4. Freedom
  5. Dukhobortsy (Doukhobors)
  6. Tolstoy
  7. Motivation
  8. Demens

Reasons  NOT TO  Leave — Why  99%  stayed  home.

  1. Economic
  2. Personal  / Religious
  3. War
  4. Freedom
  5. Doukhobors
  6. Tolstoy
  7. Little Motivation

Contents    —   Chapter 1>

Spiritual Christian History
Spiritual Christians Around the World