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 (09-010.06-F) -  Shelf Number: MDV 375

No streaming derivative is available.

Date: June 26, 2005

Participants: Waldman, Manya Abramovich; Gvinter, Sara Yankelevna; Gvinter, Yuzek. Interviewed by Dov-Ber Kerler, Dovid Katz, Efim Vygodner, and Jeffrey Veidlinger.

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

Language: Yiddish, Russian

Culture Group: Jews, Yiddish-speakers, Ukrainians

 Recording Content:   

The tape begins in Uman with the continuation of an interview with Manya Abramamovich Waldman. (Part 2 of 2. See Accession # 09-010.54-F MDV 740) She talks about her family history and her time in evacuation in Kazakhstan during World War II. She discusses her return to Uman after the war and the destruction she encountered. She emphasizes the importance of telling future generations about the war and the Holocaust.

The tape then cuts to the team traveling en route between Uman and Bershad. The team arrives in Bershad and is welcomed on the street by Efim Vygodner, the head of the Jewish Community, and his son. The team chats about local accomodations and possible interview subjects. The team travels through Bershad’. Footage of Bershad’.

The team finds Sara Yankelevna Gvinter, nee Oistrakh, and sits down for a formal interview with her in her house. (Part 1 of 3. See MDV 376 and MDV 602) (see also: Accession # 09-010.54-F MDV 733) She is later joined by her husband, who was born 1931 in Bershad. She was born in 1930, although her passport says 1928. She explains that her parents wanted her to work at an earlier age than was permissable. She discusses her childhood in Bershad. She talks about the Bershad’ ghetto during the war and the Pechera concentration camp. She spent three months in Pechera. She recalls specific atrocities commited by the Germans to which she was witness. She fled a mass shooting in Pechera, and credits Ukrainian peasants and partisans with saving her. She sings a few songs, including "Oyfn yidishn beys oylem" (In the Jewish cemetery) and "Vinter teg" (Winter days).

00:22:53 The formal interview with Gvinter begins. She provides personal information and discusses her family. Gvinter explains that for work reasons her passports writes 1928. Her father passed way during the Great Hunger in 1933.
00:26:38 Gvinter talks about her family, particularly her grandfather. He died during the Civil War. Gvinter's father was a carpenter.
00:28:05 Gvinter speaks about her life during World War II. She also speaks about her family. She was imprisoned in the Pechera concentration camp in 1943. Gvinter explains that the camp was first under German and then under Romanian occupation. She then briefly describes the living conditions in the camp. Before her deportation to Pechera, Gvinter lived in the basement of a synagogue in the Bershad ghetto. She recalls refugees from the region, who stayed at their house, as well as describes the encounter with a partisan.
00:31:26 Gvinter talks about her life before the war and discusses her family. She attended a Yiddish school for two years. Gvinter's older sister died at on the front. She then addresses praying customs and briefly returns to her camp experiences, as well as her return after the war.
00:34:27 Gvinter's husband Yuzek describes a local synagogue in Bershad. She then explains how she and Yuzek met. Yuzek was a tailor and she was a seamstress.
00:35:36 Gvinter returns to her experiences in the Pechera concentration camp, as well as her escape. Specifically, she recalls a family who was murdered. Gvinter was injured in 1943. She describes how she returned home and met her sick mother.
00:39:07 Gvinter sings the Yiddish song "Afn yidishn beys oylem" (in the Jewish cemetery), which was sung by the family in Pechera. The song is about the Jewish suffering in the camp.
00:41:08 Gvinter talks about her life in the Bershad ghetto at the beginning of the war. She also mentions the Jewish police and recalls how a bomb destroying her house. Gvinter then addresses her encounter with a partisan. She also recalled the hanging of partisans. Gvinter then describes how she was deported to the Pechera camp, dressed in peasant clothing.
00:46:22 Gvinter speaks about her life in the Pechera camp. She describes how she was buried alive in a mass grave, after German executions. She then talks about her and her mother's lives toward the end of the war. Gvinter also mentions her war medals and lists local partisans.
00:53:25 Gvinter sings another song from the war period: "Vinter teg" (winter days). She then returns to her life during the war, including observing forced labor and bombing.
00:56:50 Gvinter shows a photograph of herself in war military regalia. She then speaks about her life after the war, when she lived underneath the synagogue. Gvinter worked in an artel and her mother was a pastry cook.
00:58:38 Gvinter shares her recipe for strudel.
01:02:31 End of recording.