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Oral history interview with Rafael Wilschanski

Oral History | Accession Number: 2012.50.1 | RG Number: RG-50.030.0655

Rafael Wilschinski, born in November 1924 in Radom, Poland, discusses growing up in Batumi, Republic of Georgia; his parents’ backgrounds in the Lubavitch community in Ukraine; not attending a Jewish school; moving frequently because they did not want to be arrested and sent to Siberia for practicing Judaism; being treated as second class citizens since his father did not hold a regular job; going to Kursk, Russia and Voronezh, Russia when he was 12 years old; attending an underground Jewish school; remaining in Kursk and the nearby shtetl for six years; the German occupation beginning in 1941; many Jews being arrested and murdered; keeping in contact with his family; how their Lubavitch Rabbi kept his members strong through this time by emphasizing that they should look forward to the coming generations; the emigrations of the students from the Yeshiva; reuniting with his family in Samarkand, Uzbekistan; going with his family to Poland in December 1946; learning about the extermination camps; escaping through Czechoslovakia to Vienna, Austria where they were placed in an American UNRRA displaced persons camps in Pocking near Munich, Germany; going with other families to Paris, France; living in Paris and assisting the Lubavitch office for 25 years; getting married; and his beliefs about practicing religion.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Mr. Rafael Wilschanski
Dr. Henri Lustiger Thaler
interview:  2012 March 25
9 digital files : MOV.
Credit Line
Interview made possible by a grant from Edwin Goldstein.
Record last modified: 2021-02-16 15:51:46
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