1 Execution site(s)
Arkadiy Z. remembers: "I saw two Germans asking two men to dig a hole, or a pit. They even called my father to come and help them, but finally, they left him alone. After that, they shot the two men who had been digging." (Witness N°455, interviewed in May 2011)
“We gathered in front of the courthouse. A selection was carried out and some people were chosen, then driven in the direction of the cemetery under supervision of the Germans, and shot there. I was not selected and I survived. They ordered us to go back to our houses and back to work.” [Deposition of Ishak B., a Jewish survivor on December 23, 1964]
Stolbtsy is located 69 km southwest of Minsk. In June 1941, there were more than 3,000 Jews living in the town, including several hundred refugees from the German occupied parts of Poland. The district center was under German occupation from 1941 to 1944.
After a week of occupation, the Germans shot around 200 Jews as well as several dozen non- Jews, allegedly as a reprisal for sniper fire directed at German soldiers.
In late August or September 1941, a ghetto was established. The ghetto was located in the worst part of town, and was surrounded with barbed wire. A large Aktion took place on September 23, 1942. Around 450 Jews were sent to their workplaces, and 750 Jews, most of them women, were shot in a forest, while another 850 either managed to flee or remained in hiding in the ghetto.
On October 2, another 488 Jews, mainly women and children, were shot. Another 350 Jews were killed on October 11. Following the killings in October, the ghetto was getting smaller. On January 31, 1943, the remaining 254 Jews, including those brought in from Novy Sverzhen, were shot. Over the course of the following days, the Jews who had been captured were also shot. 293 Jews had been shot by February 4, 1943. Some of the Jews who fled the Stolbtsy ghetto survived by joining the Bielski partisan unit in the nearby Naliboki Forest.
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