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Yefrosinia TS., born in 1922, described the life of the Jewish colony Neuleben: “YIU: Did you go into the shops as well?
W: Yes, I did. There were two shops.
YIU: What did you buy there?
W: We bought sugar and sweets, everything we needed. They also sold fabrics to make dresses. They had everything one could need. They were very nice to us. They gave us loans and we could pay them back whenever we could. They just made a note and we paid in one or two years. They were very nice. When you enter the shop, they asked you to sit down. There was also a tailor in the shop who took orders for clothing. You could buy fabrics and order a dress at the same time.” (Testimony n°1998, interviewed in Bereslavka, on March 31, 2016)
“In September 1941, in the district of Bereslavka, 44 Jews workers of the kolkhoz aged from 1 to 70 years old were murdered in the kolkhoz Neuleben.” [Act of State extraordinary commission, RG 22.002M. 7021-66-124]
Bereslavka is a village located 76km south of Kirovohrad, today’s Kropyvnytsky. The former Jewish colony Neuleben, located a couple of kilometers away from Bereslavka, doesn’t exist anymore. The village was founded as a Jewish agricultural colony in the early 19th century. According to the local witness interviewed by Yahad, the villages were divided in two parts, the Jews lived on one side of the river, and the Germans and Ukrainians on another. During the Civil war the Jewish population suffered from pogroms and looting. There was a Klub and two Jewish shops in the village and one religious building where everyone went to pray, including Jews, Germans and Ukrainians. There were mixed marriages between Germans and Jews. The majority of Jews worked in the kolkhoz. There were also artisans and merchants. The Germans occupied the village in early August 1941.
For about one month the Jews continued living in their homes without being marked or registered. In September 1941, they were all taken in trucks towards the sand quarry where they were shot. In all, there were 44 victims.
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