Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Esther Feldman Icikson - October 23 & 29, November 5 & 12, 2001


The following is a continuation of an interview with Esther Icikson at her home in West Bloomfield, Michigan on the morning of October 29th, 2001. The interviewer is still Sidney Bolkosky.

The time you were in Siberia from, what, 1939 until...

No, we arrived there at 1940.



So you left...

We had a...

You left Chelm in... A:'39.

October '39, was it?

Around, yes.

And then went to some city in...


In uh, Eastern Poland?

Actually, I was checking it with my sister because she remembers the names of the places. And um, [pause] uh, I know the places we were in the beginning. We were in three places.


Uh, the first place was called Opalin. And it's, it's called ???, which is, it's the Ukraine. Then we stopped. We moved from there to [pause] Lebivne. It's Lebivne. It's a small place. It's a village. That's where we were with my family, my, my mom's uncle.

So who was there in Opalin?

Eh, we just...

You just stopped there.

...we just stopped there. And then we went to...

I'm sorry, and the name of the second city?

Lebivne it, uh, how did they pronounce it in Russian, I don't remember. But that was like, more of a, like a Jewish way of saying it.

Was it in, in Russia then?

No that was, uh...

Still in the Ukraine.

In the Ukraine, yes.


That was, we had to cross the Bug, the river Bug...

Right, to get...

...to get...

...from the German sections of the...

No, no, from the Polish section to get to the Ukraine. We had to cross the river Bug.


And that was the other side of the Bug. Little um, like uh, villages or little towns. And from there we went to a town that was called Giesen. But interesting enough, we, we didn't stay in Giesen. We started traveling back to Poland, like I told you before, because we weren't very happy there. We didn't have anything, we didn't have where to live. That's when the Russians arrested us and sent us to Siberia.


And that was, that was really the, the end of '39--the beginning of '40--1940. 'Cause my mom already had her baby and it was the beginning of '40.

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