Albert Einstein could become a professor of Belarusian State University
In December 1931, Einstein wrote in his diary that he decided to leave Berlin. The reasons were clear – a year ago the Nazis got 107 seats in the Reichstag instead of 12 previously. By this year he had already received the Nobel Prize, had created the theory of relativity and had got honorary degree from the University of Geneva, Zurich, Madrid, Brussels, London, Oxford, Cambridge, Glasgow, Manchester and others. Two years later, the genius settled in the USA. But at the time when Einstein wrote in his diary, the final decision about the place to live wasn’t accepted. It is known that Minsk was one of the places where Einstein could move.
In 1928-29 Minsk was the place where European brains were concentrated. At that time Einstein’s assistant Jakov Grommer came from Germany. He was an outstanding personality who worked with Einstein almost thirteen years, longer than anyone else.
Jakov was born in Brest in 1879. He studied Talmud exclusively till 26 years and was going to become a rabbi but his bride refused to marry because of his appearance. This occasion became the reason of his moving to Germany where he became to do science.
Grommer received a diploma of Doctor of Science in Mathematics in the University in Göttingen. In 1915 Jakov moved to Berlin and became an assistant of Albert Einstein.
The first mention about Grommer was found in Einstein's work on cosmology in 1917. In 1925, Einstein wrote that Jakov Grommer assisted him in all calculations in the theory of relativity.
In 1928 Grommer moved to Minsk because of the "brown plague". Einstein wrote a letter of recommendation about his assistant to Belarusian scientists. It goes without saying that on November 1, 1928 Grommer started his career at Belarusian State University as a professor.
Grommer continued communication with Einstein. The famous scientist even corresponded with the director of the institute where Grommer worked.
In 1931 the great physicist decided to leave Berlin. Creative environment, which was described in Grommer’s letters attracted Einstein. That’s why he turned to official circles BSSR and wanted to link his fate with BSU and the Academy of Sciences.
Belarusian scientists excitedly whispered about it in the margins. The first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Belarus Nicolay Gikalo couldn’t take such an important decision without Moscow’s decision but Stalin denied Einstein’s arrival to Minsk.
Then Albert Einstein moved to America where he continued his work. But the intellectual elite of Minsk felt awkward, and to smooth out the situation a few years later Einstein was offered to be elected an honorary member of the Academy of Sciences. But the decision of the Communist Party of Belarus on this issue wasn’t made or was negative.
Jakov Grommer died on April 11, 1933 because of his terrible disease acromegaly. Grommer bequeathed his body to medical institute for study. In 1937 the Presidium of the Academy of Sciences banned to put in books Grommer’s photographs and his name.
But in the mid-1950s to the early 1960s after Einstein's death a possible arrival of the famous scientist in BSSR was repeated from high tribunes during meetings and conferences of the intellectual elite of the country many times.