Pan Surmach


 Source: www.placematters.net node 1536

For me Surma was all about Pan (Mr.) Surmach, the founder. I visited often on my wanderings around town when newly single and exploring the world anew

Pan Surmach was a master bee keeper. I asked him how you learn to keep bees. "The bees teach you." I even took my two daughters to visit his home and garden/apiary in Saddle River, New Jersey one summertime. It was idyllic there in the thick Raspberry bushes, bees swirling all around. 

 Source: gudrungeorges.blogspot

In the photo image above just left of center is a painting by his daughter Yaroslav Surmach his New Jersey home and the large gardens and apiary.

Source: gudrungeorges.blogspot

Still some of the very best honey. Raspberry, in season. Iron rich Buckwheat. Goldenrod. Also, bee pollen. And, notice the propolis. Raw "Bee Glue". Powerful medicine for sore throat and respiratory infections.


Source: gudrungeorges.blogspot

Above shows the back office paneled in pine after traditional Ukraine farmhouse/cottage interiors.

Myron Surmach told the story of the shop's founding in hisautobiography: Istorija mojeji Surmi: Spohady Knyharja (The History of My Surma:Memories of a Bookseller, Vydavnyctvo Surma: New York, 1982).


Old school guy with the purse. I took the more current portrait of Pan Surmach for the cover of his book in the early 1980s. Another on the inside. Cost me $15.00 to process large prints for publication. Gave it to him at cost. Mr. Surmach balked at the price. He did have me sign a legal release, though, for any claims on the image.

Not a problem. He was most generous to me with his time and interest. 

I just learned that the store will be closing closing in June 2016.


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