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Oral history interview with Nisio Katzenelson

Oral History | Accession Number: 2009.29.51 | RG Number: RG-50.590.0051

Dr. Nisio Katzenelson, born on September 7, 1905, describes his two brothers and sister; his parents, Demetrio Katzenelson and Sonia Braslavsky; his cousin Berl Katznelson; his father’s immigration to Argentina from Ukraine when he was 15 years old and his work in the field of Dr. Yarcho, in the region of Gualeguaychu; how after the JCA (Jewish Colonization Association) established the Jewish colonies his father was the first Jewish farmer in Lopez y Berro, district of Colon; life, jobs, and production in the colony; his mother, who was born in Basavilbaso in the Lucienville colony; his mother’s work in the farm and abilities; working on his father’s farm; the school in the colony and his education; his Spanish teacher Abraham Chudnovsky, whose son (Gregorio) was his best friend; learning Hebrew from his grandfather, Alter Braslavsky; learning Yiddish in Lopez; the non-Jewish family in town, the Ferreyra family; games played in the colony and the first soccer ball; religious observances and celebrations; his family’s piano; his family’s appreciation of reading and literature; how many newspapers and other publications were picked up in San Salvador, in Yiddish, Russian, and Spanish; being sent to his grandfather’s farm in Lucienville at the age of 10; how the first agricultural Jewish cooperative was found in Basavilbaso by his grandfather and his grandmother (Victoria “Vita” Wulfsohn de Braslavsky) began the Society of Ladies for Charities there as well; his teacher Yedidia Efron, who prepared him for admission in high school; attending the High School Fraternidad in Uruguay and living there for five years; not experiencing antisemitism while attending school; moving to Cordoba, Argentina, where he studied medicine for six years; becoming the first doctor in the Ubajay colony; the economic crisis after 1928 and not always being paid for his services as a doctor; funding the university studies of his two brothers; helping his father with the colony; the failings of the JCA; his religious life in Ubajay; moving to Concordia after eight years in Ubajay; getting married to a Catholic woman and raising his children Catholic; and his theories on why the colonies declined.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Nizio Katzenelson
interview:  1989 May 25
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, acquired from the Asociacion Mutual Israelita Argentina-Communidad de Buenos Aires
Record last modified: 2020-09-15 09:25:42
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