Stayki | Vitebsk

The Yahad-In Unum’s team during the interview. ©Jordi Lagoutte/Yahad-In Unum Yevdokia T., born in 1928, Belorussian, was rounded-up along with other children and taken to a camp in Beldres. ©Jordi Lagoutte/Yahad-In Unum Raisa Sh., born in 1931: “Prior to the execution all the villagers were gathered near the school.” ©Jordi Lagoutte/Yahad-In Unum The school building where the Jews were gathered prior to be taken to the execution site. ©Jordi Lagoutte/Yahad-In Unum Monument at the execution site, in the woods close to the village of Stayki. site. ©Jordi Lagoutte/Yahad-In Unum Monument at the execution site, in the woods close to the village of Stayki. site. ©Jordi Lagoutte/Yahad-In Unum

Execution of Jews in Stayki

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before :
Memorials :
Period of occupation:
Number of victims :

Witness interview

Yevdokia T., born in 1928: “I was going to school; I was eight or nine years old at that time. They were living in Stayki, well not in Stayki, but in a settlement. They were living there. We bought them things. They had houses and they stood there… Now there is a drugstore; they were selling things there, like candies, minty candies, I remember. […] They had minty candies; they were called “sen-sen”. It’s the old-fashioned name. “Sen-sen.” We had no money, so, there were two Jewish women there, they told us: “Tell your mother to give you some eggs.” So, my mother gave me a pair of eggs and they gave me candies in exchange, well candies and… Well, they had different stuff packed. I bought this. And then, my children, when the war started…I already didn’t go to school or anything…we also feared that the Germans would take us somewhere.” (Witness n°1036, interviewed in Stayki, on October 29, 2019)

Soviet archives

« [Summary] There are only lists of victims. According to the list 17 Jews were exterminated in Stayki. No other detail is provided.” [GARF 7021-84-2]

Historical note

Stayki is located 30km (18,6mi) north of Orsha. The first records about the Jewish community go back to the 18th century. In the beginning of the 19th century about 400 Jews lived in the village making up roughly 30% of the total population. In the mid-1920s the Jewish population decreases due to relocation to bigger towns. According to the local residents, there were about a dozen Jewish houses close to the railway station. The majority of them were merchants; they had small shops inside their houses.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

Stayki was occupied by the German army in July 1941. A part of the Jewish population escaped to the East.  The remaining Jews continued to live in their homes until September 1941. On September 29, 1941, an aktion was carried out by the Germans. Before being taken to the execution, all the Stayki Jews were rounded-up at the place near the local school. Then, they were taken to the woods where they were shot with submachine guns. According to the eyewitness of the shooting, the local population was forced to go watch the execution, even though nobody took them there by force; they went by themselves. According to some sources there were two mass graves at the site. Besides the Jews there were ten communists murdered on the same day.

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