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[Page 222]

Notices and Lists

Translated by Judie Goldstein

Yiddish Names Of The Krinik Streets

Amdurer Street, Bath Street, Bialystoker, Community and Grodner Streets; Halinkerke Street; Chaykl's (Azheshkove) Street; Pottery Street; the Market and Marketplace; Mill Street (Koschelne [Church]); New and Sokolker Streets; Post Office and Currant Streets; Peretz Street; Tzerkve [Russian Orthodox Church] Street; Police Station Street; Synagogue Street; Synagogue Courtyard; Shishlevitzer and Blacksmith Streets; Narrow Street (Wonske).

 

Names Of Regions

“Tiflis”, “Kavkaz”, Yenta's Courtyard, Forest and Orchard.

 

Jewish Farmers in Krynki

During the time of the German occupation during the First World War, many Jewish families started to become involved in agriculture, especially at the edges of the town and the surrounding areas. Even after the war, there were some who continued working in agriculture, especially in growing potatoes.

Similarly, we find (according to the census of Dr. Lipowski of the JOINT), that 37 Jewish families in Krynki farmed 10 Dessiatin[1] (more than 100 dunams) of land. 135 people were occupied in this, and 246 individuals were sustained by this. In 1927 as well (according to the accounting of the Y.K.A.), two Jewish families in Krynki farmed an area of 21 hectares (200 dunams).


Translator's Footnote

  1. 1. An old Russian unit of area. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dessiatin

 

Jews On The Krynki Town Council

In 1927 the Krynki Town Council, according to a proposition from a member Bendet Nisht, and with a majority of 19 votes to 15 – decided that all official announcements and orders of the Town Council will be printed not only in Polish but also in Yiddish. Also that at the meetings of the Town Council one may speak and make speeches in Yiddish.

To carry out this order it was necessary to get the agreement of the District Governor.

(According to “Grodner Moment” of 25th November 1927)

 

The Community of Krynki Declares a Boycott of Nazi Germany

In the spring of 1933, the leadership of the Jewish community of Krynki sought to organize a boycott of Nazi Germany. It appointed a special committee for this purpose. They declared a public fast day on May 8, and posted large placards calling on the Jewish residents to close their stores and stop their businesses that afternoon, and to gather for a public meeting in the Great Synagogue in the evening. A prayer service would be conducted, and speeches would be given, including from the rabbi of the town, about the situation of the Jews of Germany and the Soviet Union.

 

Dedication Of The “Public Heder”

The “dedication” of the “Public Heder” in 5690 [1930] was a “city event” in Krynki. Rabbis, social workers from various cities and towns, gentiles and also Reb Meyer Karelitz from Vilna were invited and came to the celebration.

An orchestra played and the

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Sokolker cantor sang synagogue music. Moreover greetings – first to B. Ayon, Chairman of the Kehila [Jewish Community Council], that gave the “heder” 500 zlotys and even promised support; then Zev (Velvl) Weiner in the name of the “Building Council”, Shalakhovitch – from the “Council,” Segal – from the workers, Rudy – from “Linat HaZedek” [staying overnight with the sick], Tarlovski – Chaiman of the Loan Without Interest Fund, Yitzhak Slapak – from the retailers, Melamed – from the besmedresh, Lublinski – from the Zionist organizations. Then the non-Jewish representatives of the government; and then rabbis and other prominent guests and especially the “host”, the initiator and manager of the “Public Heder” – Rabbi Mr. Hezekiah Josef Mishkovski.

The second part of the program that went on until late at night, was dedicated to “calling down blessings” and this brought in over seven hundred dollars, a large sum in those days.

“It was joyous to see how the men and women carried their contributions to the building of the heder” writes “e'n” (the Kuznitzer Rabbi Mr. Nissen Ekstein) who took part in the celebration. In the Vilna “Dos Vort” [The Word] (delivered according to M. Tzinovitch). “And it was a beautiful moment” (writes there “Abraham ben HaChaim”, son of Rabbi Mr. Kh'I Mishkovski), when “a poor man who goes around to houses, brought his contribution of eighteen zlotys”. “Even those only concerned with the leftist groups had - - under the influence of the celebration gave significant contributions, above their means”. And further “women” due to the initiative of the native rabbinate Breyna Miskhovski, brought their contributions, not satisfied with what their husbands gave.”

At the end the people, young and old, Hasidic rabbis and ordinary people, in ecstasy sang and lost themselves in a “festival dance”. And with the singing they went to the dance “Preparing for Tomorrow”.

 

“Krinker Vakhnshrift”

A Zionist publication, “Krinker Vakhnshrift” [weekly] appeared in the shtetl in 1918.

 

“Funken”

Several books under the name “Funken” [sparks] - “organ of “Poalei Zion” and “Freiheit” in Krynki – appeared in the summer of 1927.

kry223.jpg - Editors of 'Funken' Krynki 4 Jun 1927
Editors of “Funken” Krynki 4 Jun 1927

 

“The Young Revolutionaries”

An illegal communist publication “The Young Revolutionaries” appeared in Krynki in September 1928.

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A Book About Krynki And Krynkers

An important memorial book about Krynki (118 pages printed on glossy paper) was published in 1930 by landsleit [compatriot] in Chicago (United States) for the 15th anniversary of the founding of the “First Krynker Relief Union”.

The book, written in soft, homey, Krynker Yiddish, was edited by the Heiman brothers and Ab(raham) Miller who published an important work. Ab(raham) Miller described life in his hometown, studies of Krynker economic development since the 18th century, the raging struggle of the Krynker Jewish workers for freedom and better working conditions, daily life and the various figures and characters of the shtetl and the ordinary people.

The book, to this day a rarity, contains memories of other participants, material about the Jewish Public School and institutions and a lot of rare photographs.

A considerable amount of this Krynker literary treasure of this new elaborate edition was used here for our “Yizkor Book.”

 

Investigator, Man Of Letters And World Scientist

A Krynker

Hersch Mintz was born in 1906 in Krynki, went to heder there, later graduated from High school in Grodno and in 1927 from the Polish Teacher's Seminary in Lemberg. Since 1928 he has been in Australia where he continued his education at the University of Adelaide and Sydney. Later he became a lecturer of European literature.

During the Second World War he took part as an officer in the Australian Navy and settled afterwards in Melbourne and was active in Jewish community life.

In the scientific field Mintz helped in the evaluation and theory about wool – as a part of its basis. He was the first university wool investigator who divided the original quality of wool and put it in table format that is now used throughout the world. His work about wool and sheep serves as a handbook in the universities and his work is acknowledged as the greatest contribution in this field.

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He is well versed in literature in several languages, write Yiddish, Hebrew and English, is a contributor to the “Australishe Yiddishe Neyes” [Australian Jewish News] newspaper and of this Jewish-English and English press, where he publishes in succession works about Jewish literature, theater and culture. In the Australian Jewish “Kdima” [priority] Almanac he published works about the history of the Jews in Australia. He is the author of books in English and Yiddish about the history of Jewish communities in Southern Australia (English) and Jakob Spears journeys and visit in Australia as a travel agent from Israel in 1861 (published by “YIVO”).

Hersch Mintz is especially active as a Jewish cultural worker for the Zionist pioneer youth movement and for the “Histadrut [labour] campaign”.

During his second visit to Israel in 1964, Mintz led negotiations concerning preparations for a movie about the sheep in ancient times in Israel due to archaeological discoveries. The agricultural faculty in Rehovot invited him to lecture about wool science and the possibility of raising Merino sheep in Israel.

Translated by Jerrold Landau

Great responsibility, ideas and a sense of justice demanded of a judge

 

Kry225.jpg
Master Sergeant Chaav Inbar, native of Krynki, seated on the judge's chair of the Israel Defense Forces. She is the daughter of Hindka, the sister of Bendet Nisht. She is a judge in the military court of the Israel Defense Forces.

 

The only female judge in the Israel Defense Forces, and apparently the only one in the world, is the young woman, filled with humor – Chava Inbar, the daughter of Hindka, who is the daughter of Shmuel Nisht, the father of Bendet Nisht. She studied law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Before her appointment as judge, she served for ten years as a defense lawyer in the advocacy of the northern command, in thousands of cases of absenteeism, refusal to fulfill duty, careless use of weapons, etc.

(From B. Landau, Bemachane [In the Camp] newspaper of Israeli soldiers, 2 Cheshvan, 5730 [1969].

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Additions

The Fundraising campaign in Krynki in 1903 for those injured in the Kishinev Pogrom

As in many Jewish communities in Russia, Krynki conducted a fundraising campaign for the benefit of those injured in the Kishinev Pogrom. The campaign took place in the spring of 1903, a short time after the slaughter of the Jews of Kishinev. This was an expression of Jewish fraternal feelings. In Hatzefira of Warsaw from 23 Sivan 5663 (June 10(23), 1903) [1]), a list of approximately 300 donors from Krynki, the majority being businesses.

Let this also serve as a list of testimony to the names of those families by including them in Pinkas Krynki. (In general, the names are written as they appear in the list. The kopeck amounts are noted only with numbers.)[a]

Sent from Krynki to the government authorized committee in Kishinev to support those injured by the disturbances:

Collected by L. Garber, B. Hirszowicz, B. Kniszinski, M. Swarcman – from the local rabbi and head of the rabbinical court 5 rubles; N. Kniszinski 10 rubles; Grosman-Lewin Co. 8 rubles; L. Garber, B. Hirszowicz, Tz. Fabrikant, Y. Margolis, Y. Garber, D. Kniszinski, P. Onuszewicz, Garber brothers – each 5 rubles; Iwenicki brothers, A Brustyn, M. Szwarcman, V. Ch. Nakdimon, Y. Torlowski – each 3 rubles; Sh. Wiener 2.50 rubles; Dr. Halbert., M. Szimshonowicz, Y. Slower, B. Kincler, B. Stolarski – each 2 rubles; M. Chazan 1.30 rubles; A. Garber, H. Garber, M. Garber, A. Zalkin, B. Kalinowicz, N. Ostrowski, B. Y. Iwenicki, A. Gotlib, A. Mordechilewic, Dentist Awerbuch, Sh. Goldberg – each 1 ruble; A. Bajdel, W. Slapak, Krupnik, Sh. Nisht, Ceszler brothers, A. Listokyn, W B. Fink. A. Lazicki – each 50 kopecks; D. Okun – 35; A. Fajnberg, M. Kuzniec – each 30; W Gurawic, Ch. Bunimowicz – each 20; A. Braude, Y. L. Chajes, Z. Szajnberg, Y. Broneg – each 1 ruble; P. Kohen, Laszer, each 50 kopecks.

 

From Factory Workers

Tannery of N. A. Kniszinski: Z. Otwezski 1 ruble; N. Trachimowski, Y. Gel, Ch. Finkelsztejn – each 20 kopecks; Y. Ajlin, Y. Borkowski, M. Janowski each 15; L. A. Lampert 50; Sh. Tewel, E. Gering each 30; Ben-Tzion Kantor, S. Surowicz, Walenti, A. Wiener, Zajdka each 25; Kohn, A. Bunim, Sh. Y. Rachkin each 50; P. Moszcanski, W. Melnyk each 25; W. Kac, Ch. Z. Kaplan, A. Kroln, A. Lider, A. Lopote, M. Lejbrowicz, L. Ostrinski, M. Farber, Y. L. Kundzic each 50; B. Szturmak, S. Tryzwa, A. Pandera, Y. Brzeszowski, Y. Sh. Ajnszmid, M. Bortnowski, Sh. A. Goldszmyd each 25; S. Reizen 20.

B. Kniszinski Tannery: Ch. Morani, A. Szkilewski, A. Szyf each 1 ruble; A. Mendelson, A. Y. Krynker each 50; M. Chirig 30; M. Lebendik, W Kopel, D. Krinski, Y. Charas, A. Ch. Krynker, Ch. Judelewic, W. Goldberg, Zisl each 25 kopecks.

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Grosman-Lewin Tannery: A. M. Sikorski, D. Stambler, M. A. Zonenberg, each 1 ruble; Sh. Chowski, M. Lesnik, each 50; A. Y. Seliber 36; Sh. Adinak 30; A. Roitbart, L. Gercowski, Z. Birnbaum. G. Nowyzak, L. Slower, Y. Gershuni each 25; M. Szepjocki, F. Bordon, N Langerfajgn each 20; H. Kurkyn, A. Czyk, A. Grecowski, M. Eksztejn each 15; N. Chawer 10 kopecks.

A. Brustyn Tannery: Grobsz, Y. A. Fajnsod, Sh. Wilenski each 5; A. Charo, Tz. Gendler, A. Kohn, Y. Kalia, Y. Gordin, Y. Charo, T. Lew, A. Gliman each 25 kopecks.

L. Garber Tannery: L. Lew, H. Lew each 50; H. Szturmak, Y. Grynberg, Sh. Wajsman each 25; M. Kotlier, Charanzaj each 20; Sh. Kozelczyk, E. Epsztejn, M. Zev, H. Bobor each 15; L. Charst 10 kopecks.

Y. Garber Tannery: M. Epsztejn, Y. Slapak, L. Nemirowski, D. Szoszan each 50; Sh. Chaszkes, R. Morber each 40; M. Liakow 25; Y. Hant 15 kopecks.

Garber Brothers Tannery: Sh. Elizerowicz, H. Stoliar, P. Szklorski, Y. Pruzhansky each 50; B. Orenowski, A. Tykocki, Ch. H. Gendler, Y. Eplbaum, M. Tykocki, Z. Boszniak each 25; Iwoszkowski 10 kopecks.

Y. H. Nakdimon Tannery: W. Gurewic, M. Kaplan each 50; Y. Glembocki, Y. Aleksandrowicz each 40; Sh. Kaplan Y. Ch. Griszcinski, Y. Terkel each 25; M. Kozelczyk, Sh. Zolto each 15 kopecks;

Ivenicki brothers tannery: B. Szkolnyk 50; Sh. Grosman 30; W. A Studnyk, M. Terkel, Ch. Tresczan, L. A. Brewda each 25; Sh. Socharewski, P. Grosman each 20; B. Belicki, D. Tykocki, Ch. Leibowicz, W. Szurmak, Bojlmat each 15.

M. Margolis Tannery: A. Zylberblat 25; Y. Wajrman, H. Lipski each 15; B. Szturmak 10 kopecks.

Tz. Fabrikant Tannery: Y. Szajnberg, W. Leibowicz, P. Rabinowicz each 50 kopecks.

A. B. Frajdman Tannery: A. B. Frajdman 1 ruble; B. Done, Sh. Slower each 50 kopecks; L. Feldman 25 kopecks.

N. Epsztejn Tannery: N. Epsztejn 50; Y. Yatom, A. Brewda each 25; N. Najman, Sh. Lezjorowicz each 15; A Polk, Z. Majster each 10 kopecks.

Dubinski-Kirzszer Tannery: W. Sikorski, M. Kirzszner, M. Dubinski each 50; Y. Gozszanski, Y. Ch. Zubowski, N.Barkin each 25; Y. Poliak 15 kopecks.

 

From a Special list:

A. Yatom, M. Lublinski, Sz. Jacewlan; Y. L. Zaleski, Y. Limder, M. Lubelski each 2 rubles; Karpowicz 1.25 rubles; Mordchilewicz, Sh. Mordchilewicz, Y. Wilenski, A. Jacewlan, M. Chackel, Y. Cackel, A. Lowski, A. Paczewocki, Sh. Yacewlan, A. M. Yatom, M. Pruzhanski, Y. Lew, N. Edelsztejn, M. Margolis each 1 ruble; Sh. D. Sapirsztejn 75; A. Gendler, Sh. A. Chait, M. Polewocki, L. Rotbart, M. Afrimzon, Sh. Kotlier, A. Farber, N. Borowski each 50; M. Pivka's, B. L. Drajzy, Y. Lezjorowicz, A. Fel, A. Perlman. A. Puria, Sh. Edelsztejn, Y. K. Tewel, A. Furman, Ch. Y. Zalkin, Ch. R. Marac, T. R. Grosman, A. Galiant each 30; Ch. Alian 35; N. Polanski, Z. Szynder, Tz. Hercberg, M. A. Sochen, Y. D. Melamed, Sh. A. Temkyn, M. Gabai, Sh. Wajn, Y. Becalel, R. Gozszanski, A. Klotnicki, A. Mordchilewicz, D. Elkan, A. Najman each 25; M. Szolker, M. Zalkin, Y. Z. Chait, Sh. Glembocki, A. Kugel, Z. Sapirsztejn, Y. Kapoler,

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N. R. Rojtbard, A. Efron each 20; Y. Morn, W. Mosztowlianski, Z. Kapica, Ch. W. Leiber, Sh. Toker each 15; T. Kohen, Y. Lewin, B. Z. Nisht, D. Prenski, Y. Szafer, Y. Tewel each 10 kopecks.

Small donations 20; Menchenewicz 50; A. Walker 29 kopecks.

Ancis-Listokin Tannery: A. W. Wiener, Sznajder, Kos each 25; Listokin 50; Tz. Mordechilewicz 15; Ancis-Listokin 2 rubles; A. Kugel 1 ruble.

Assistants of the Sh. Priwes company – 31 ruble.

Total transferred: 188 rubles, 30 kopecks.

 

Kry228a.jpg
Beis Yaakov Girl's School

 

Kry228b.jpg
Students in the General Chede

Translator's Footnote

  1. The two dates were given in the original text. They seemingly represent the discrepancy between the Gregorian and Julian calendars, as the Julian calendar would still have been in use in Russia at that time.

Original footnote:

The arrangement of the names is as it was in the aforementioned newspaper, by donor and company. The kopeck amount is listed only with a number, without specifying the currency.

 

[Page 229]

During the Time of the Storm
1939-1941

Translated by Jerrold Landau

 

At the Outbreak of World War II
Fear and Terror

The devil, Hitler may his name be erased, attacked Poland on September 1, 1939, and the Second World War broke out. A draft of men of age 18 and over was immediately called. Some of them immediately became German prisoners, and never returned.

Quickly, the buzz of airplanes was heard over Krynki. They began bombarding the [market] square unimpededly. The youth went to and for trying to reach the front, for which nobody knew the whereabouts…

On the 8th of the month, the Nazis already reached Grodno, having passed over Krynki. Fear and terror took hold of the Jews. The elderly fasted and recited Psalms. The Polish police and city leadership did not even have time to escape. The confusion was great, and everyone hid in the houses, without even sticking their noses outside.

In the meantime, the German troops arrived, wearing their clunky helmets. They revealed the secret that the Russians were about to enter the town. The news quickly spread through the community, and aroused sparks of hope in their hearts.

 

22 Months Under the Protection of the Red Army
Temporary Rescue and Anxieties

On September 15, an airplane appeared in the sky with the red star clearly visible on its wings. It dropped flyers on the town, informing the residents that the Red Army was approaching, and would reassure their lives and property. While the Soviet troops were approaching Krynki, and the Polish police was still present, the local laborers did not wait. They grabbed the rule into their hands, and raised a red flag over the town hall.

The Jewish residents welcomed the Red Army with enthusiasm, good wishes, joy, and flowers. Veteran Communists even jumped atop the Soviet tanks and kissed the soldiers. Our Jewish brethren breathed a sigh of relief. Even the wealthy people and manufacturers, who had reason for concern, were satisfied, for at least they were saved from death.

Not many days passed before the Soviet authorities began to impose their rule upon the town. Factories and real estate were nationalized. Private ownership of businesses was liquidated. They reorganized the foundations of the cooperatives.

Enthusiasm for the regime was dimmed with the passage of time among those who had awaited it. For some reason, the new authorities did not place any trust in the members of the Communist Party. They even suspected them of being Trotskyites. On the other hand, the authorities did not refrain from relating with more trust to those who were not among the ranks of the party, for example, to the physicians and pharmacists.

In the interim, life in the town found its routine, and a Soviet way of life spread through.. The wealthy, especially the manufacturers, were for the most part arrested and deported to Siberia. Thus, they were saved and remained alive. Those who remained in place found themselves in a very bad situation. Everyone made efforts to find some sort of employment. On the other hand, many Jewish families who had been previously unemployed found employment as officials and laborers, and were satisfied with the change of times.

The situation of the refugees who had escaped and arrived in Krynki from central Poland, which had been conquered by the Nazis, and who were unwilling to accept Soviet citizenship, was very serious. They were deported to the interior of Russia. However, in general, the population worked, and the Jews waited for better days.

The saying that was then common among those going through the town, attributed to the Slonimer Hassidic rabbi, was “German conquest means certain death, whereas Soviet rule is life imprisonment.”

[Page 230]

Teaching in Krynki During Soviet Rule

by Arnold Rozenfeld

Translated by Jerrold Landau

I spent time in my native city of Radom, and more than once I recalled far-off Radom , where I had spent such happy days in my life when I served as a teacher in the Hebrew school there.

Then the Second World War broke out. Within eight days, Hitler's troops took over all of Poland. Anyone who did not succeed in escaping on the first day of the war could not leave the place. I was among them.

I wrote about the suffering that I endured during the first three months of Nazi rule in Radom in my book “Three Months in the Nazi Hell of Radom.” However, I did not despair, and I hatched all sorts of plans to escape from the talons of the Nazi murderers. One day, I was prepared to set out on a journey, and the question stood before me: to where? In my predicament, I recalled Krynki, and told myself: “If I can only get to there – I will not fall. I will live!” However, the distance was far, very far. I wrote some things about it in the aforementioned book. However, I reached Krynki.

It was no longer the small town that I had left many years previously. There were already hundreds of Russian Communists there, including Jews, under the rule of the Soviet Union. I could no longer see any signs of joy, or happiness in the eyes of my few acquaintances, as it was many years previously. Already on my first day in Krynki, I found a group of my former students, including Eli Gozanski, Mashka Kaplan, Chana Rubinsztejn, and Rachel Aharonowicz. When I arrived, they looked after me like an older brother. I will never forget all that they did for me during those days so that I would feel good. They did this with all their heart. I was never particularly fond of the Yiddish language, and did not know it well, but nevertheless, “vos tut men nisht for parnassa?” (what does one not do for a livelihood?) When my former student, Chana Rubinsztejn, came to me to invite me to teach in her Yiddish school (with Yiddish as the language of instruction), at which she was the principal – I did not refuse. However, despite all my good intentions, I could not adjust to teaching in this language that was strange to me. This was despite the fine manner with which my principal related to me, and her request that her husband, comrade Perlman, work with me to prepare my lessons. I felt that I could no longer continue there. At that time, my dear friend, Eli Gozanski, made every effort to pull me out of the “mud.” The supervisor of the Russian school knocked at my door every day, and did not let up until he set me up in the Russian school.

I was offended that my role was an unimportant teacher during the first month. However, it quickly became known there that I could give a great deal to that educational institution, which was a high school with a very large number of students. Most of the teachers were Russians, and it was headed by a Jew from Minsk whose name was Lewin, if I am not mistaken. He was a dedicated Communist, but an upright man with a good heart. He found out by chance that I had a high level education, and was an expert in German, with a great deal of experience. One day, he transferred me to teach German in the upper grades. I demonstrated my knowledge of that language, and I quickly became the sole expert of it in the town. Every important examination in German was conducted by me, and I was the only one who taught it in any important government institution. My financial situation flourished from day to day. It is worthwhile to note that in those days, the two Kozlowski brothers had an honorable position in the education network in Krynki. The younger was the vice principal in the high school, and his older brother was the supervisor of schools. I do not know what their fate was after I left Krynki for the second time.

Incidentally, I benefited from full room and board in the home of Rachel Aharonowicz, my former student in Krynki. She was like a sister to me. I never felt lonely if I had anyone close.

Who knows if I would have survived the war had I not become a “person of Krynki.” At the end of the school year, a few days before the outbreak of the war between Russia and Nazi Germany, I was stricken badly by a stomach ulcer. My situation was particularly bad, and the doctors recommended that I be sent urgently to Zheleznovodsk for convalescence. To my good fortune, I went there to convalesce, and thus was I saved.

 

From Krynki to the Land of Israel
via the Soviet Union and Syria

by Yehuda Eckstein

Translated by Jerrold Landau

I recall that during the time of the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1933, when the German scouts entered Krynki,

[Page 231]

they left it within a few days, and the Red Army entered, the Jews exited the synagogues enwrapped in their tallises to greet the redeeming army. How great was the joy among the people.

I, whose longing and pining for the Land of Israel disturbed my rest, left my family and town, and set out in October of that year to Lithuania, which had not yet been conquered, with the intention of reaching my desired destination. I reached Vilna, and joined the hachshara kibbutz on 37 Sovoch Street. This was a refuge for many chalutzim [Zionist pioneers] who escaped to Lithuania from Poland with the hope of going from there to the Land. Among them were the Krynki natives Avraham Dranicki, Berle, and others who were together with me in Hechalutz Hatzair [Young Hechalutz], and who did not succeed in coming to the Land. May their memories be a blessing.

News spread through Lithuania for some time that the British had placed the Land of Israel into the hand of the Jews, who had established a state. We all knew that, to our dismay, this was not true, but rather a tale. I spent approximately 16 months there. When we visited the YIVO (Jewish Scientific Institution) there, we registered in the guestbook: “Our aspiration – to the Land of Israel. Krynki natives, December 10, 1940.” Yehuda Eksztejn and other signed.

I left Lithuania on the 18th of that month, and I arrived at my desired destination, the Land of Israel, on January 5, 1941, after journeying on a difficult trip through the Soviet Union, Turkey, and Syria. I went to Kibbutz Ramat Hakovesh.

 

The Remnants of Hechalutz Hatzair

by Chaim Sheinberg

Translated by Jerrold Landau

When the Soviet army entered the town at the beginning of the Second World War, our movement knew to begin clandestine work. A group of members made contact with workers who arranged the smuggling of chalutzim across the border of White Russia to the “independent” Lithuania of that time (region of Vilna), from where there was a strand of hope that one might be able to set out for the Land of Israel. Some indeed arrived in the Shacharia Kibbutz of that city, including the late Yehudale Eckstein (of Ramat Hakovesh), and Lea Sapir, who succeeded in making aliya to the Land during the years 1940-1941, at the beginning and at the height of the Holocaust.

Other Krynki natives of that kibbutz found their way, at the time of the invasion of the Nazi brigades, into the pioneering clandestine resistance at the ghetto. Let us remember here our comrade Avraham Dranicki (Walutiner), who fell in his resistance against the Nazis in a town near Kovno.

I myself, the final secretary of Hechalutz Hatzair of Krynki, encountered the war as I was preparing for aliya in the kibbutz in Baranovichi. I had good fortune, in that after going through ghettos, forests, and camps, I earned reaching the shores of our Land. May these few lines serve as a form of a memorial monument to the memory of those enthusiastic and dedicated pioneering youth from our town who dreamed of being with us here, but were cut off and did not make it.

 

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