Friday, September 26, 2008

More on Egan Schmit-Michael (Mischa) Svarg

Just a little.
At this point I may add to Egan Schmit (also spelled Schmidt, Schmitt or Schmitz) story that he was a mathematician born in Latvia, a communist militant, probably enlisted initially with the Mac-Pap Canadian International Brigade, transferred to the XV Compañia de Zapadores (engineers), who died on or around the 19th of August 1938 in the Sierra de Pandols, during the Ebro river battle in the Spanish Civil War. He had reached the rank of captain, so he was at the time of his death the commanding officer of the engineers unit that erected the monument to the IIBB, and then his memorial gravestone.

I may add that the “Zapadores” of the republican army were very important in the long lasting battle, as they not only built all the bridges and planks to cross the river, but also were crucial on the building of trenches and refuges that allowed the republican fighters to survive the tremendous onslaught of the air bombing and heavy field artillery the nationalist poured on the Pandols and Cavalls hills for more than 100 days.

Most of this information comes from different correspondents of the “Guerra Civil Española” forum in the Tinet webpage ( a very active discussion list on the subject of the Spanish Civil War.


audiotalaia said...

some guys in Edinburgh asked me about the Spanish Civil war, so I forwarded to them your blog!

Also I told them to read George Orwell's Homage to Catalonia I think it's a pretty good book about the atmosphere in Catalonia during that time.

cheers uncle!

Rickard Jorgensen said...
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Rickard Jorgensen said...

There is a photograph of Egan Schmidt at Tamiment Library in New York (reference 11_0771s) dated October 1937 and he is mentioned in the Merriman diaries of that time.

Rickard Jorgensen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.