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Tomashpol'
 (09-010.52-F) -  Shelf Number: MDV 700
 IUCAT




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Date: May 27, 2007

Participants: Sapozhnik, Klara Naumovna. Interviewed by Dov-Ber Kerler, Moisei Lemster.

Location recorded: Tomashpol', Vinnyts'ka Oblast', Ukraine

Language: Yiddish

Culture Group: Jews, Yiddish-speakers, Ukrainians

 Recording Content:   

This tape begins with the research team en route to the home of Klara (Khaye) Naumovna Sapozhnik. (Part 1 of 2. See MDV 701) She sums up her current situation with the following words: “It’s a hard life and now it’s gotten even worse". Much of what Sapozhnik relates to the researchers is repeated information from her 2005 interview. Sapozhnik was born in 1924 in Tomashpol’ the same town, in which she has always lived even during the war years. Her youngest sibling Yidl/Yura currently lives in Ashdod, Israel and has severe health problems.

The interviewee recalls the hardships of hunger and poverty in her youth, and the tragic deaths of her first husband and son in the postwar years. Both her parents worked in agriculture and with livestock on a half-Jewish kolkhoz called Gigant. At the time of this most recent interview, Sapozhnik lived in what she describes as an old Jewish home, complete with old mezuzahs, near where a synagogue used to be. Sapozhnik shares information about her sisters, among whom are Dvoyre (b. 1916), Sure (b. 1917, she moved to the Far East) and Zina (who moved to Moscow in the 1930s).

The interviewee remembers various traditional foods served on shabes (Sabbath) and shares family fish recipes. Sapozhnik attempts to describe the Yiddish schools that were once in the town, but notes that she herself never had any schooling because her family lived on a kolkhoz; she therefore remains illiterate. Sapozhnik returns to the war years, further detailing what it was like in the Tomashpol’ ghetto, and how the Jews who had been sent to the town from Bessarabia were killed. Sapozhnik takes great pride in her garden and tells the interviewers about her crops, including flowers, potatoes, onions and seabuckthorn, the latter of which she makes into an oil that she is able to sell. Before he died, her husband used to make wine from their grapes. Towards the end of the tape, Sapozhnik tells the interviewers how after the war there were very few Jewish young men in the town as the majority had been killed in the war. Her mother knew and practiced folk remedies, such as the usage of bankes (cupping), a traditional form of healing.