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Archival description
From the Jewish ghetto in Otwock, Poland collection
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From the Jewish ghetto in Otwock, Poland collection

  • RC0612
  • Collection
  • 1939-[1948]

The collection consists of correspondence received by H.D. Schwartz (also David and Eva Schwartz) in Brooklyn, New York from family members and acquaintances (Syma Grzebieniarz, D. Segal, R. Szware) in Otwock, Poland. Many of the post cards are self-addressed by H.D. Schwartz. Schwartz was apparently arranging for the immigration of family members from Poland to the United States, and Syma informed him of her activities in this respect. Several cards are stamped Judenrat der Stadt Otwock (and the Polish equivalent).

The correspondence relates to the health of the family members and the writers’ connection to children and family, urging loved ones to keep in touch through letters. Reference is made to Josek and Sara, Syma’s children, who live far away in Luck (under Russian control) and with whom Syma cannot communicate directly. One of the pieces of correspondence seems to be by Sara. It is to “brother” and “sister in law”, probably of Brooklyn. Sara informs them about having a baby. The baby is also a topic in Syma’s correspondence.

Written in Yiddish, the last piece of correspondence is a long letter (dated 20 March [1948]) about the unknown writer’s experiences as he and his family tried to flee and save their lives. It, too, touches on health-related matters, conditions in the ghetto, people and neighbours who were killed by the Germans, the constant threat of being shot, locating people who are lost, and attempts to escape the ghetto to a safer place.

Jewish Ghetto in Otwock, Poland collection