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Sulamita Simenauer Konar collection

Document | Not Digitized | Accession Number: 2003.289.1

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    The collection documents the Holocaust experiences of Sulamita Simenauer Konar’s mother Chana Pomerancblum Simenauer and grandmother Mina Zalcman Pomerancblum, both of whom survived in hiding under false identities in Jeleśnia, Poland. Included are a registration form (Meldebestaetigung) issued to Chana under her false identity of Maria Kolodziejczyk, and two occupancy registration forms (anmeldung) issued to Mina under her false identity of Luzie Wilczynska.

    The form issued to Maria Kolodziejczyk stated that Maria, maiden name Szczepan, was born on June 20, 1918 in Skala, in the Lvov region, was a seamstress and resided at the house of Franciszka Bulawa; her husband was Johann and her daughter Christine, born on March 15, 1940 in Sosnowiec, resides with her. Dated: June 14, 1944 in Jelesnia. The forms issued to Luzie Wilczynska stated that she was born on September 3, 1890, and resided in the house of Karl Smagon in Jelesnia in April 12, 1944, and in the house of Franciszka Bulawa in Jelesnia on July 6, 1944.
    creation:  1944
    Collection Creator
    Sulamita S. Konar
    Sulamita Konar was born Sulamita Simenauer on November 19, 1940 in Sosnowiec, Poland. She is the only daughter of Heinz Simenauer and Chana Pomerancblum Simenauer. Heinz was born in 1915 in Bielszowice, near Katowice and worked as a store window decorator. His parents were Joanna Nebel Simenauer and Josef Simenauer, and he had three siblings: Erik, Frida and another brother lived in Nowa Wies. Chana Frymeta Pomerancblum was born in 1913 and was one of four children of Mina Zalcman Pomerancblum and Hershl Pomerancblum. The family owned a tobacco store, where Chana helped out. Chana’s siblings Motek, Lola and Wilek all helped out as well.

    In 1938 Heinz moved to Sosnowiec, where he met Chana Pomerancblum. They married in July 1939 in a Jewish orthodox ceremony. After the German invasion of Poland in September 1939 the Jews in Sosnowiec were subjects of immediate repressions. Sulamita was born at home on Modrzejewska Street in Sosnowiec in November 1940. In 1942 Hershl Pomerancblum was shot and killed in the street and his son Wilek was a witness to this killing. In July 1943, shortly before the liquidation of the ghetto, Chana escaped the ghetto and arranged for her daughter to be smuggled out of the Srodula ghetto. Sulamita was put in a bundle of dirty linens and carried out as if it was laundry. Heinz didn’t join his wife and daughter because he felt that since he couldn’t speak Polish he would not be able to hide. Chana purchased false papers for the name of Maria Kolodziejczyk and Sulamita was registered as her daughter, Christine. It is likely that Chana’s sister Lola, who was active in the Sosnowiec resistance movement, helped with obtaining the false documents.

    With help of Chana’s Polish school friend, the mother and daughter reached town of Jelesnia in the Beskid Mountains. Chana tried to make a living by knitting sweaters from unprocessed wool. Sulamita attended church, but without her mother. Chana stayed in touch with her mother, Mina, who was also in hiding. In April 1944 Mina arrived in Jelesnia and joined her daughter and granddaughter in hiding. Her false name was “Luzie Wilczynska.” A man with the last name of Willner, who used to work for the Simenauer family in Now Wies prior to the war, managed to escape from a labor camp and came to hide in the house with Chana, Sulamita and Mina.

    One night German soldiers came to search the house and Chana opened the door, bundled in a blanket. She was very pale and when she was asked about it, she calmly explained that she suffers from TB. Sulamita stood next to her mother, fully aware that if the Germans will find Mr. Wilner, they will all die. The Germans immediately left after Chana’s mention of TB.

    In January 1945 the Soviet Red Army liberated the area. Chana, Sulamita, and Mina went to Bielsko-Biala, where they were reunited with Motek Pomerancblum, who survived in hiding. They found out that Lola, who married Mr. Mikelis in the Srodula ghetto, obtained false South American papers, but she was caught by the Germans, while traveling by train. Wilek Pomerancblum survived several concentration camps. All other members of the Simenauer and Pomerancblum family were murdered in the ghetto or in Auschwitz. Sulamita and other members of the surviving family moved to Walbrzych. They all applied for visa to immigrate to Israel, but Sulamita and her mother were refused numerous times. Mina died in 1949 and Sulamita and her mother moved to Warsaw a year later. In 1964 Sulamita married Wlodzimierz Konar (Kohn), who was born in Krzemieniec in 1940. He and his older brother and parents fled to Uzbekistan, where they survived the war. In 1968 the Konars left Poland for the US. Their son, Allan Konar, was born on August 22, 1972. Sulamita and her husband settled in Staten Island, NY.

    Physical Details

    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
    Jeleśnia (Poland)

    Administrative Notes

    The collection was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2003 by Sulamita Simenauer Konar.
    Record last modified:
    2023-04-07 11:30:56
    This page:

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