About this blog

Nearly 70 years after the holocaust Eastern Europe is still covered by neglected Jewish cemeteries, ruins of synagogues and other remains of  Jewish institutions – stranded ships at the shores of time. The traces of Jewish life are still there, but they vanish day by day. It’s only a matter of time until they are gone forever. There are no municipalities, no foundations and no miracles to save them. Public interest is often low and sometimes overshadowed by guilt. The future of this unique cultural heritage is in our hands – and partly some of this private initiatives are very efficient. This blog tries to recall those places into public consciousness and wants to encourage people for the rescue of a heritage we all share.

As Swiss diplomat and historian Simon Geissbühler said, “commemoration is also an act of justice” towards those men, women and children who died as innocent victims in the genocide, known as the holocaust. It is an act of justice towards those who survived as well.

Most of the entries in this blog are based on my personal experiences. They have the character of a travel diary and are not a scientific documentary. Don’t expect me to post daily. Posts will appear as trips give reasons for it. There will be times of frequent posts and days of silence.

12 thoughts on “About this blog

  1. My family was from Viznitz. I am thinking of trying to go there with my cousin. I would like to know more about the logistics of doing this. Are you willing to correspond via email? I would really appreciate learning more. Thank you so much!

    • Shalom Marthe Schulwolf,
      Just read today 02 April 2013 your recent posting in the “Vanshed World,” blog, if you have not gone yet to
      Viznitz and are still interested in logistics, maybe I can help. I too was in Viznitz, (very short visit mainly in
      Chernowitz and shteitels north-east of Chernowitz) with a cousin in May-June 2010.

      Please contact me at: Sabaisio@yahoo.com

      All the best,
      Aizic Sechter

      Marthe Schulwolf

      February 10, 2013 at 10:23 pm

      My family was from Viznitz. I am thinking of trying to go there with my cousin. I would like to know more about the logistics of doing this. Are you willing to correspond via email? I would really appreciate learning more. Thank you so much!

  2. Shalom Christian,
    Very interesting.
    I visited the Chernivtsy area with a cousin in May-June 2010
    Mainly to visit this area because my ancestors both from the side of
    my Mother and father lived there and many are buried there.
    My father’s shteitel is Klishkivtsy which is in the middle of the road
    between Chernivtsy and Khotin, my mother’s town is just about 5
    kilometers further east on the same road towards Khotin called
    Cherivtsy.
    I would like to ask you how I could contact the groups of volunteers you
    mention that assist in clearing and cleaning cemeteries.
    Klishkivtsy has two Jewish cemeteries, the first one, one of the oldest
    in this area (if not the oldest one) dates back to about 1750 if not before
    that Jewish people were buried there not only from Klishkivtsy but from
    all the area till about 1880 when the cemetery did not have any more
    space. then a new (the second Jewish cemetery) was established in a
    other area. Jews were buried there till the early 1960s when the last
    Jews left Klishkivtsy. (During World War I and World War II the Jews
    of Klishkivtsy and the shteitels nearby were expelled from their homes
    so then no Jews were buried there)
    Today both cemeteries are in very bad condtions, specially the older one.
    Also I believe that the restoration of these cemeteries should include ways
    and means to stop the continuous growth of the plants and trrees, maybe
    with some herbicides and then putting black polythene sheets on the ground
    covered with small peebles and wood chips, and then twice or three times
    a year there will only be a need to go over the small growth with some
    herbicides. What do you think?
    Please reply to my email address: sabaisio@yahoo.com
    Aizic Sechter
    Israel

  3. My family was from Chernivitsy area. We know very little of their history. They left for Canada in 1896 and we never heard about he ‘old country’, except about the plum trees and orhards. My great grand parents fled and established businesses in whatever land they could get on the prairies, which turned out to be not great for farming. They left behind everything in Bukovina. It is most amazing to visit there through your photos.Thank you for this photo and word legacy of a ‘forgotten place’.

  4. Hi,

    Just ran into a link to this blog, I did not know about it before.
    I like what you have written, good work, important posts, I will follow.

    I am an artist/architect/photographer who documents old Israeli architecture, in Israel, especially abandoned buildings and especially from the 20th century so I feel close to this agenda.

    Thanks,
    Sharon Raz

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