2 Execution site(s)
Yefrosynia D., born in 1933: “It was already cold when a group of Jews was brought here. They were herded into the stables that belong to the kolkhoz (collective farm) . While staying there, they were guarded by the policemen. It was forbidden to leave the stables, although many of them did. As they had nothing to eat, they went to the houses located not far away from the stables to ask for food from the locals. Some had money to pay for the food, others exchanged the food for the clothes. From time to time, a Jewish woman and a young Jewish boy of about 15 years old would come to our house. They would come to stay in a warm place during the day, and for night they would come back to the stables. They spoke Ukrainian but it was very difficult to understand them.” (Witness n°2776U, interviewed in Potashnya, on September 10, 2021)
Potashnya is located 148km (92mi) southeast of Vinnytsia. According to the residents interviewed by Yahad, Potashnya was home to Ukrainians; no Jews lived in the village before the war. There were two kolkhozes [collective farms] in the village, which later were united in one. Agriculture was the main occupation. The Jews lived in the nearby town of Bershad, located about 9km (5.6mi) away.
Potashnya was occupied by German and Romanian forces at the end of July 1941. The village remained under the Romanians and became part of Transnistria in September 1941. Over a thousand Jews were brought here in the fall 1941 from Chernivtsi. They were confined in the stables that belong to the collective farm. The stables were guarded by the policemen who would rob the Jews and take all their valuables. Even though it was forbidden to leave the ghetto’s territory, many of Jews did in order to go ask for food. Some Jews would find shelter with the local people who gave them food and a warm place to sleep. According to the monument, about 1,000 Jews died from starvation, cold, and inhumane living conditions under the occupation.
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