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[Page 280]

Letters from the Diaspora (1935 - 1939) cont.

Chana Pores from Dusiat to her Friend Henia Blacher in South Africa[1]


“We shouldn't divide Eretz Yisrael …”


20.7.1937 “Collective Shomeri” in Kaunas

Dear Henia,

How are you?

I received your letter and I was very interested to hear about you and about our new movement in Africa. I am very happy that you are continuing to be a part of our Zionist movement.

You will probably be amazed by this letter. You will ask how come I am writing a letter from the “collective” in Kovno. So I will write you all about myself.

I think that you know that I studied sewing, and now in Dusiat there is nowhere to study and sitting at home with no work, and in general living in a small shtetl, is just not the thing to do.

Consequently I decided to come to Kovno and learn a trade and now I am in Kovno and learning knitting. It is quite a good trade here and in Eretz Yisrael.

As you can see, I am in the “collective”. I hand over a certain sum each month, and this is already considered hachshara [training for life in Eretz Yisrael]. Yes, you might be amazed that I am already at hachshara. Perhaps it was early to go to hachshara, but I can't wait.

I feel well here, even though I am the youngest person here. Nevertheless there is almost no difference and I don't feel it. The members are very good, and the situation in the “kibbutz” is also good.

I have been at hachshara for the past two months. I have begun the first step to self-realization and I also plan to complete it.

Heninke, perhaps we will meet again sometime, even though I can't imagine that a moment will come and we will see each other, but I am certain that our mutual aspiration will yet bring us closer.

There is a major crisis at present in our Zionist movement, and who knows how it will end, but now we have to accept our fate and hope that things will eventually be good.

Henia, what do you say about the division of Eretz Yisrael? What impression did this news leave on the members of your movement?

Oh, it is a great pity. No matter what, we shouldn't divide Eretz Yisrael for which we have already sacrificed so many people. It is heartbreaking to think what our situation is there at present.

Henia, what's new with you? How are you feeling? I saw you in a picture. There is a girl here who corresponds with a boy from Johannesburg. You had a picture taken at camp. Oh, how I would like to see you now. I have missed you so much lately, and I have to write you.

Here in the environs of Kovno the Leaders Conference has already begun. Gershon Slep and Gershon Baron have come from Dusiat. We spoke and I told them that I had received a letter from you, and they also looked at the picture that you are in. Gershon Baron plans to remain here if he finds work. We will write you together in the next letter; he will also write. I also frequently attend the conference.

I have almost no more news to write you. I think that Sheine Chaitowitz will tell you everything. I accompanied her to the train. Regards to Beinish [Yudelowitz] and Nechama [Yudelowitz]. I wrote them once and they didn't answer me. I don't know what the reason is, but nevertheless, they could have answered me if they had wanted to.

Thank you very much for the coupon you sent us. Without the coupon we really wouldn't have been able to answer you, as we are already at hachshara, and we only receive stamps twice a month, so it is clear that we have to write home.

Nu, I will end now. I have lots more to write you, but I can't today. I will write more next time.

Keep well. Your devoted Chana

I am waiting for an immediate reply. Regards to your Rachel [Blacher] and to all your family. Regards to all the Dusiaters and also to my relatives.

Henia, send us pictures.

I am sending you my new address.


Kaunas, Panevezys g-ve No. 4 b.2
For Chana Pores “Chalucams” [chalutzim]


In the margin of the letter written (in Hebrew):

As I am unemployed, I ask you to find me a job. Chanka

Tzila Gudelsky (Shub): “Chanka” is Chana Beiman who was a member of this “collective”.



  1. Henia Sneh's private collection. The letter was written in Hebrew. Return


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