From the Inferno Back to Life
(Szczuczyn, Poland)

53°34' / 22°18'

Translation of
Mihatofet bechazara lechayim

Written by Itzhak Wertman z”l

The book is unpublished



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Translations by Sara Mages

Our sincere appreciation to Itzhak Wertman
for permission to put this material on the JewishGen web site.

 

This is a translation from: Mihatofet bechazara lechayim (From the inferno back to life),
Written by Itzhak Wertman, unpublished (H)


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Introduction 3
 
Chapter One
 
Family Background and my Life in Szczuczyn Until the Outbreak of the War 4
The background of the city of Szczuczyn 4
My father's family 6
My mother's family 9
My childhood and youth 10
 
Chapter Two
 
My Stay on the German Side (September 1939-March 1940) 20
Echenstein Camp 23
The shooting in Sobibor 24
My stay in Włodawa 25
 
Chapter Three
 
My Stay in Camps in Russia (March 1940-July 1948) 27
Crossing the border to the Russian zone, the Russian prison in Brisk and the sentencing 27
The Pechora (?) Camp (September 1940 – November 1941) 29
Lagpunkt 2 (November 1941 – September 1942)* 37
Lagpunkt 14 (September 1942 – December 1942) 39
Lagpunkt 1 (December 1942 – March 1943) 40
Lagpunkt 3 (March 1943 – June 1943) 41
Lagpunkt 8 (June 1943 – November 1944) 41
Lagpunkt 5 (November 1944 – October 1946) 42
The release from forced labor and the stay in Kanin-A'os (October 1946 – July 1948) 45
 
Chapter Four
 
The Return to Poland After the War (July 1948 – December 1949) 50
The road to Poland 50
Bialystok 51
Klodzko 52
Łódź 53
 
Chapter Five
 
The Immigration to Israel and my Life in the Country 57
My dear family members 61
 
Appendix
 
The history of the Jews of Szczuczyn and the surrounding area during the war 63
 
Map of the sites where I was in Poland 27
Map of the sites where I was in Russia 52

* Some, including many German war prisoners, were deliberately not told where they were; others confused the name of their lagpunkt, or camp unit, with the camp itself. Each of the 476 camps was, after all, made up of hundreds, even thousands of lagpunkts, sometimes spread out over thousands of square miles of otherwise empty tundra.


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