Nemorozh (Nyemorozh) | Cherkasy

/ Hanna Zh., born in 1929: “There were women, men, old people. There was one old Jew. They told him: “Oh, what a terrible time you are having.” And he said: “Don’t worry, they started with us, they will finish with you.” ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum Hanna Zh., born in 1929: “They were holding each other’s hands and screaming. I cannot think of it. Their voices… It is impossible to think of it, then they were driven away.” ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum Ivan P., born in 1930: “Once I saw Jews digging the pit near the pigsties. An elder Jewish man approached the pit, took off his hat and put it on the ground. He was ready to die, but the German decided to not shoot at him. He let him go back to the camp.” Ivan P., born in 1930, at the execution site. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum Ivan P., born in 1930, with Yahad’s team near the former pigsties where several hundred Jews were detained. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum The former pigsties, or stables, where several hundred Jews brought from Zvenyhorodka were detained. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum The barn that belonged to Hanna’s family and where a Jewish woman was hiding for a while. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum The Yahad-In Unum team during an interview at the witness’ yard. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum The able- bodied Jews from the camp in Nemorozh were subjected to perform road construction of the Transit Highway IV (Durchgangsstrasse IV) project. ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum The execution site of several hundred Jewish inmates from the labor camp. Today it is a private property and there is no marker.  ©Les Kasyanov/Yahad-In Unum

Execution of Jews in Nemorozh

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before:
Stable (pigsty)
Period of occupation:
Number of victims:
Several hundreds

Witness interview

Ivan P., born in 1930 : “At this moment I was in the fields grazing my cattle when I saw a column of Jews being brought. The column was long. They were all arranged in lines of four, as if it was a military march. The column was escorted by guards. I remember they had dogs, but I will not be able to say if they were Germans, policemen or someone else. There were many more people in the column than the ones confined in the stables. They were taken to the natural pit. I couldn’t see them, because I was on another side of the river, but shortly after I heard the rattles of the machine guns. The shooting lasted for two or three hours. After the shooting, someone came by truck to pick up the shooters, and they left in the direction of Zvenyhorodka.” (Witness n°2751U, interviewed in Nemorozh, on August 22, 2020)

Soviet archives

“[…] The German bandits carried out terrifying atrocities in the camps of Zvenigorodka and Nemorozh. They forced the Soviet citizens to perform heavy and insurmountable work and inflicted on them the inhuman pain before being assassinated […].” [Act drawn up on April 19, 1944 by Soviet State Extraordinary Commission; GARF 7021-65-241, pp.81-86]

German archives

“Investigation in the framework of a trial against Franz Becker, former Gebietskommissar of Zvenyhorodka who is accused of the following murders, held in Drotmund, on December 20, 1977:
Case n°6
Date : June 1942
Place : labor camp in Nemorozh
Victims: 3 infirm Jews
Operation mode: Shooting […]”[BArch B162-9138, p.75]

Historical note

Nemorozh is located 80 km (50mi) northeast of Uman and 120 km (74mi) south west of Cherkasy.  Before the war, the village was home to Ukrainians and several ethnic Germans. There were no Jews living in Nemorozh. A big Jewish community lived in the town of Zvenyhorod, located 5km away. On the eve of the war 1,957 Jews lived in Zvenyhorodka comprising 14% of the total population. 

Holocaust by bullets in figures

Nemorozh was occupied by the German troops on July 29, 1941. A labor camp was created in Nemorozh in May 1942. About 300-350 Jews fit to work were displaced from Zvenyhorod to the camp. The camp was created in the collective farm stables, although according to the local witnesses, they were pigsties. The territory wasn’t fenced in, but it was guarded by the police. The Jewish inmates from the camp were used as labor for the repair and construction of the Transit Highway DG-IV (Durchgangsstrasse IV). Those inmates who became ill and incapable of work were shot dead in small groups outside of the camp. The exact number of the isolated shootings is unknown. In the end of May 1942, 150 Jews were selected and taken to the camp in Smilchyntsi, where on November 2, 1942, they were shot along with other Jews in the Gubskiy forest, located between Zvenyhordka and Smilchyntsi. The remaining Jews from the Smilchyntsi camp were transferred to the Budysche camp. On May 8, 1943, the inmates were taken back to Nemorozh, where they were murdered three months later, on August 23, 1943.

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