Return to ATM Online Collections  > AHEYM: The Archive of Historical and Ethnographic Yiddish Memories  > L'viv

 (09-010.29-F) -  Shelf Number: MDV 557

No streaming derivative is available.

Date: May 10, 2003

Participants: Pensatii, Abram Isaakovich; Dorfman, Boris Mikhailovich. Interviewed by Dov-Ber Kerler, Jeffrey Veidlinger.

Location recorded: L'viv, L'vivs'ka Oblast', Ukraine

Language: Yiddish, Russian

Culture Group: Jews, Yiddish-speakers, Ukrainians

 Recording Content:   

The first brief part of the recording is a tour through Lviv, led by Boris Mikhailovich Dorfman and Abram Isaakovich Pensatii.

The second part of the recording includes a formal interview with Abram (Avrom) Isaakovich Pensatii, born 1914 in Odesa. (Part 1 of 2. See MDV 558)

00:00:00 The camera collects town footage from the van while Dorfman points out the his former workplace. He was the chief engineer of a pharmarcy company.
00:02:11 The formal interview with Pensatii begins. He provides personal information.
00:04:11 Pensatii provides personal information. He moved to Kyiv from Odesa in 1934, before moving to Lviv in 1939. He then speaks about his family. Pensatii became an orphan in 1919. His father, who passed away in 1919, worked at a printing plant. Pensatii grew up with one brother, who died in Odesa in 1941.
00:07:36 Pensatii discusses his life before the war in Odesa. He studied at a Jewish technicum, where the language of instruction was Yiddish. Pensatii explains that the students of the technicum were sent to learn a profession at a factory in 1928. Pensatii became a turner within six months.
00:11:52 Pensatii talks about prewar Jewish life in Odesa. He mentions the positive relations between Jews and non-Jews and recalls non-Jews who spoke Yiddish.
00:16:19 Pensatii addresses his religious education, when he went to services at Odesa's Great Synagogue. Pensatii also mentions that he frequently visited the local opera house.
00:18:07 Pensatii speaks about his life and also work as turner at a workshop before the war. He was drafted into the Red Army in 1934 and sent to Kyiv shortly thereafter. In Russian, Pensatii talks about military figures. After his military service, Pensatii worked at the main post office.
00:27:03 Pensatii speaks discusses his childhood memories and prewar religious life in Odesa. He recalls how members taught him several prayers and speaks about visiting cantors on holidays.
00:33:39 Pensatii addresses his participation in prewar cultural life. He then speaks about holiday celebration, including Shabbat HaGadol (Sabbath immediately before Passover) and Passover at wealthy people's home.
00:36:29 Pensatii speaks about Sabbath food customs. He also talks about his visit to America. He then addresses Sukkot and Yom Kippur celebrations before the war. In particular, he recalls visiting a local bookbinder for the holiday.
00:42:05 Pensatii mentions Purim and Passover celebrations and food customs before the war. He remembers how he asked the Four Questions.
00:45:25 Pensatii speaks about his father who was shot in 1919 by French soldiers. His older brother took care of him at an orphanage. Pensatii then addresses Yiddish literature.
00:48:56 Pensatii speaks about his life before the war. He worked at a factory and studied at the Workers' University (Rabfak) in the evenings. Pensatii also mentions Yiddish theater and music performances.
00:52:02 Pensatii addresses prewar Yiddish press. He also speaks about German language instruction before the war and then about catching Nazi criminals.
00:59:46 End of recording.