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Margalit Katz Harel papers

Document | Not Digitized | Accession Number: 2002.88.1

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    Overview

    Description
    The collection documents the Holocaust-era experiences of Margalit Katz Harel, originally of Chernivtsi, Ukraine, and her family. Documents consist of identification papers issued to Margalit’s mother Mitzi Katz as a resident of the Mogliev ghetto (Mahili︠o︡ŭ, Belarus). Photographs include pre-war depictions of Margalit in Chernivtsi and her maternal grandparents Yehudit Bartfeld Simche and Chaim Simche. A group photograph taken in Cacica, Romania in 1933 depicts the following people: Margalit, seated on left; Margalit’s second cousin Lizzi Dermar is seated on the right. Behind Margalit is her maternal aunt Berta Simche and standing right is Lizzi’s mother Mancia Dermer.
    Date
    inclusive:  1933-1943
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Margalit K. Harel
    Collection Creator
    Margalit K. Harel
    Biography
    Margalit Katz Harel was born on March 21, 1931 as Margit Katz in Putila, Romania (Putyla, Ukraine). Her father, Shlomo Salomon Katz, was a wood merchant and her mother, Mitzi Noemi Simche Katz, was a housewife. The family lived in Chernivtsi, Ukraine at Strada Constanze 5c and spoke German at home.

    In June 1940 the Bessarabia and northern Bukowina regions were transferred by Romania to the USSR. The communist authorities confiscated the family business. In June 1941 Germany invaded the USSR and on September 15, 1941 Romanian prime minister Ion Antonescu ordered around 150,000 Jews to be deported to Transnistria. In November 1941 the extended Katz and Simche families were deported to Mogilev (Belarus). Through bribes, the families were allowed to remain in the Mogilev ghetto. Mitzi Katz was able to sneak out of the ghetto to sell hers and others’ valuables for food. In 1943 both of Margit’s paternal grandparents, Tziril and Wolf Katz, and her maternal grandmother, Yehudit Bartfeld Simche, perished in the Mogilev ghetto.

    In the spring of 1944 the Soviet Red Army liberated Mogilev and conscripted them as forced-laborers. Margit, her maternal grandfather Chaim Simche, and her parents fled to Bucharest. They had hoped to immigrate to Palestine, but were unable to do so. Margit started to attend a Jewish, learned Hebrew, and joined “Hanoar Ha’tzioni” Zionist youth organization. Salomon Katz, who contracted tuberculosis in the Mogilev ghetto, died in 1946. In December 1947 the family boarded SS “Pancrescent” and sailed towards Palestine. The British intercepted the ship and the family was deported to Cyprus. In July 1948 Margit, her mother, and her maternal grandfather arrived in Haifa, Israel. On October 21, 1952 Margit married Shimon Sztrenk, a survivor from Lvov, Poland (Lviv, Ukraine). Their son, Shlomo was born in 1957 and their twin daughters: Ofra and Ayala were born in June 1967. Margit, now Margalit, and Shimon Harel lived in Ramat Gan, Israel.

    Physical Details

    Language
    Romanian
    Genre/Form
    Photographs.
    Extent
    1 folder
    System of Arrangement
    The collection is arranged as a single series.

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Material(s) in this collection may be protected by copyright and/or related rights. You do not require further permission from the Museum to use this material. The user is solely responsible for making a determination as to if and how the material may be used.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Geographic Name
    Mahili︠o︡ŭ (Belarus)

    Administrative Notes

    Provenance
    The papers were donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum by Margalit Katz Harel in 2002.
    Record last modified:
    2023-02-24 14:04:09
    This page:
    https:​/​/collections.ushmm.org​/search​/catalog​/irn510557

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