3 Execution site(s)
Aleksandr P., born in 1932, remembers: “It was at the end of summer when we went to the forest to get some wood for winter. With the other boys, we saw a shooting. We couldn’t get close because the police threatened us with guns, so we looked on from afar. They were brought in open trucks. There were no children, mostly men and some women. In one truck, the one I saw, there were about 15 people. There was a German in the cabin who gave orders. The Jews were forced to get off the truck, one by one, and run towards the pit. Those who refused to run were flogged.” (Eyewitness n°1755, interviewed in Zhaskhiv, on June 13, 2013)
Zhashkiv, founded in 1636, is located 170 km west of Cherkasy, 64 km from Uman, 160 km from Kiev. According to the census in 1939, 877 Jews lived in the town. The majority of the Jews lived in the town center and held little commerce. From some sources, we know that in 1920-1930s, there was an elementary school but all the witnesses we interviewed told us that Jewish children went to school with Ukrainians. There was no synagogue as all the religious places were forbidden by the Soviets. The Germans occupied the town on July 19, 1941. By that time, some Jews evacuated to the East and men were enrolled into the Army.
Shortly after the German occupation, all the Jews were marked and registered. At the end of July till the beginning of August, an open ghetto, partly fenced in, was created. Yahad’s research confirmed this and found the eyewitnesses of several Aktions against the Jews. In the summer, about 300 Jews, women, men, children included, were shot near the brick factory. According to Nina B., an eyewitness of the shooting, the grave measured 3m long, 6m wide and 2.5m deep. Oleksandr P., interviewed by Yahad, watched another shooting in a sand quarry, about 1km east of the village. From his account, there were several shootings that took place in spring 1942 and each lasted about an hour. After being brought by trucks, the Jews were shot one by one with a revolver. According to Mikhail, in 1942, another shooting of the Jews took place in the field behind the village of Sorokotyaga, but unfortunately, he didn’t remember all details. In total, about 500 Zhashkiv Jews became victims of the Holocaust.
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