Askania-Nova (Askaniya Nova, Neu-Askanien, Askanija-Nowo) | Kherson

/ The view of the town of Askania Nova © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum In the center of Askania Nova © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum The Germans’ Kommandantur  was located in this building © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum Anatoliy B., born in 1936 saw the execution of 6 Jews in a sand quarry © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum Yahad’s team during an interview near the execution site © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum Nina C., born in 1931: “People were shot in the sand mines next to the slaughterhouse. One day, a Jewish woman was taken there by cart with her 3 children, but somehow she managed to come back.” © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum About 200 Jews were murdered here by Germans. Back then it was sand quarry. © Aleksey Kasyanov /Yahad-In Unum

Execution of Jews in Askania-Nova

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before:
Sand quarry
Period of occupation:
Number of victims:
About 200

Witness interview

Anatoliy B., born in 1936, remembers: “I saw only six Jews being shot in a sand quarry. But I know that many other Jews were also killed there along with non-Jews. I lived close by and often, during the night, I heard human moans coming from the quarry, but my parents never let me go there.” (Testimony n°2217, interviewed in Askania-Nova on May 24th, 2017)

Soviet archives

“I saw groups of 10-15 men, women and children consistently being taken from the prison to be shot in the sand quarries situated 700 meters south-east of Askania-Nova. [...]About 200 Jews were shot and buried in the sand quarries [...].” [Deposition of Yevheniia N. given to the State Extraordinary Commission on September 30th, 1944; RG 22.002M:7021-77-417 (p.69)]

Historical note

Askania-Nova is located 145 km south-east of Kherson. It was founded in the early 19th century as a rural settlement of Chapli. In 1828, the Saxon Count Ferdinand, Anhalt Ketten, bought about 51,000 hectares of land to make a German agricultural colony. The estate was renamed  Askania. In the late 19th century Friedrich Falz-Fein was the owner of this land. He founded a nature reserve, Askania-Nova, to protect the local native flora from farmers and the cattle breeders. In March of 1919, Askania-Nova was confiscated from the Falz-Fein family by the Red Army as part of the State Nationalization Program.  In 1939, only 22 Jews lived in the settlement. They lived off agriculture and small-scale trade.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

Askania-Nova was occupied by the German troops on September 14th, 1941. Shortly after the occupation, a new starosta as well as a new police was appointed by the Germans. The German kommandantur was created. Over the course of Yahad’s field work our team, with the help of local villagers, identified two execution sites of Askania Nova Jews; one is located in the sand quarry south-west of Askania Nova and another can be found close to the village of Henichesk. According to the historical sources, about 200 Jews were shot in Askania Nova in fall 1941. Along with the Jews, 15 prisoners of war were shot in October-November 1941.

 For more information about the execution in Henichesk please refer to the corresponding profile.

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